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Would you make an au pair pay?

(120 Posts)
gooseegg Sun 13-Jul-08 01:28:58

If your au pair had had her purse stolen with her front door key in it would you insist on her paying the full price, half price or have no need to contribute at all financially to the cost of a replacement front door lock and new keys?

The au pair was out with friends in a nightclub - so drunk that she was an easy target.

The purse was later discovered in a car park by security guards with (thankfully) all her debit cards and her passport still inside. But our front door key and her mobile phone were missing.

In the purse she had left a document (a money transfet form) with our address on - which also wasn't taken, but which may have been read and have now provided a thief with our address and the means to break in easily.

The lock will need to be changed tomorrow, and dh and I have a difference of opinion on who should pay for it.

nappyaddict Sun 13-Jul-08 02:10:06

Do you have insurance that might cover it?

Cynthia32 Sun 13-Jul-08 02:43:08

I'd say half and half.

bossykate Sun 13-Jul-08 06:21:02

no i wouldn't make her pay, but i would have a discussion about taking reasonable precautions wrt to the keys in future.

remember she has been the victim of a crime - it could have been you in a busy cafe, supermarket or restaurant. i don't think it is fair to assume it is all her fault because she was drinking.

justabout Sun 13-Jul-08 06:40:57

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Weegle Sun 13-Jul-08 07:10:56

I would not make her pay but I would have a talk about safety and securing your possessions and explain that if it happens again then she will have to pay. Explain to her she must not keep your address with her keys. And ask her to take greater care of how she looks after her keys when she is out drinking.

littlestarschildminding Sun 13-Jul-08 07:46:20

I would not make her pay this time..but I would have words about security and ensure that she realises if it happens again she will have to pay.


SimpleAsABC Sun 13-Jul-08 09:23:44

I'd suggest asking her to pay.

Then you'd see whether or not she's taken the situation seriously.

Then I'd probably just pay yourself (feeling a bit hard done by!!) and hope that she has the sense not to let it happen again.

foofi Sun 13-Jul-08 09:26:06

No, I wouldn't make her pay - as long as she understands the seriousness of what has happened and doesn't keep your address and your keys together in future.

LynetteScavo Sun 13-Jul-08 09:32:07

I wouldn't make her pay, but I would let her know how much it was costing.

As already said, seh was a victim of crime.

I would imagine the cost of a new lock would be a massive % of her weekly wage.

nannyL Sun 13-Jul-08 09:37:11

I dont think you should make her pay

I have a HUGE bunch of keys (and have never lost them [touches wood])

BUT in my old job they had extensive building work done on their mansion....

and they 6 external doors which they all had the same key for, so had 6 locks especially made...

they gave me the key to it on a key ring which I then attached to my bunch of keys.

About a week later on the school run the key on the key ring they had given^ me^ fell off the bunch of keys.

The only place it could ahve been was at the school (on a very small area betweeen where i parked and picked up the children) OR their HUGE gravel drive...

given it was never found at school we had to assume it was on the drive. and therefore all 6 door locks had to be changed, re-made, and they were only about a week old!

(Incdidently the key has never be fund)

I didnt offer to pay and wouldnt have even if they asked, i was NOT negligent, they key fell off their rubbishy key ring.

I apreciate your Au-Pairs situation was slightly differenet, but she didnt loose it, it was STOLEN by a theif. She was a victim of crime and i dont think its fair that you make her pay.

(In the event that they find the thief im sure you could claim the cost back from him)

If a thief STOLE your car while the au pair was using it would you make her pay the excess?

nbee84 Sun 13-Jul-08 09:47:23

Agree with lots of others on here.Don't charge her but a big talk about taking care when out drinking/not keeping documents with keys/the cost incurred to you for replacing locks.

Check your house insurance. You may be able to claim.

wilbur Sun 13-Jul-08 10:05:34

I wouldn't make her pay, but def give a stern talking to about security and not keeping your address in her bag. I'd make it clear that if it happened again in similar circumstances that she will have to contribute. I imagine she is mortified about the incident and hopefully that will make her shape up. TBH, au pairs are usually young girls and are not professional employees (and I am speaking as an enthusiastic au pair employer myself) and so the occasional disaster along these lines is par for the course. At least she wasn't mugged.

unfitmother Sun 13-Jul-08 10:09:40

Poor girl, I'm with bossykate.

squeaver Sun 13-Jul-08 10:12:21

Don't make he pay, but make sure she know how much it's costing you. Hopefully, that'll be a lesson to her. If she was your teenage daughter would you make her pay?

gooseegg Sun 13-Jul-08 10:55:22

Thanks everyone.

It's dh who is insistent that she pay the full cost.

This isn't the first time she has had her purse stolen, although the first time it happened she had not been drinking. It was taken from her coat pocket when her coat was hanging over her seat at the cinema.

She is a lovely girl and I completely trust her. When she goes out she likes to drink lots of vodka - which I privately don't like or approve of. I keep that to myself because she like anyone else has the right to enjoy her wages and to spend her free time as she likes so long as it doesn't adversely affect us.

I do feel (perhaps controversially) that the fact that she was drunk and had deliberately set out to get drunk is irresponsible and gives her some blame for a thief having taken advantage of her.

In the same way as I would describe someone who deliberately drives when drunk to be responsible for causing an accident, and yes in the same way as would describe a drunk woman to be 'partly' responsible for being sexually assaulted.

She has been a victim of a crime and I have comforted her and been very relieved she wasn't hurt or had her passport taken

I do have a teenage daughter (20 now), and I would expect her to pay if it had been her. I would however expect the proportion of what I would expect her to pay to be a fair one with regard to what she could realistically afford to contribute towards it - even if only a tenner.

I'll check our insurance and show this thread to dh.

themildmanneredjanitor Sun 13-Jul-08 10:58:39

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

NumberJill Sun 13-Jul-08 11:02:16

She's an adult, albeit a young one, and I do think she should contribute. Not pay all, as you are in a position of care to her, but pay a significant amount.

nannyL Sun 13-Jul-08 11:05:46

shock at "I would describe someone who deliberately drives when drunk to be responsible for causing an accident, and yes in the same way as would describe a drunk woman to be 'partly' responsible for being sexually assaulted."

consuming alchhol does not give anyone the right to SEXUALLY ASSUALT a person.... end of.... sorry
thats MY opinion!..... I think its also how the LAW of this country works too actually

FabioTheLiterateCat Sun 13-Jul-08 11:08:18

I am horrified that you think a drunk woman is partly responsible if she is sexually assaulted.

bamboostalks Sun 13-Jul-08 11:15:40

I had some sympathy with your situation until I read your appalling and disgusting, YES, disgusting comment about women assuming responsibility for the actions of rapists. Wise up to yourself, I suppose if your au pair had been raped you would have liked her to make some appropriate recompense as well.

ElfOnTheTopShelf Sun 13-Jul-08 11:18:35

Sorry gooseegg but that is the WORST comment I have EVER seen on a thread.

RubySlippers Sun 13-Jul-08 11:19:05

gooseggs - your comments are REVOLTING

unfitmother Sun 13-Jul-08 11:19:25

As I said earlier, poor girl, having you and your DH as an employer. I find your comments repugnant. shock

bamboostalks Sun 13-Jul-08 11:19:34

And to draw comparisons between a drunk driver and a rape victim is beyond anything I can believe would be ever written on these pages. Have a good long think about your rationale and forget about the door!

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