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Owner threatening to sue

ceredigion
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11 posts
7 reviews
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Owner threatening to sue

I was unhappy about the way a hotel had charged me, I rang twice to ask them to contact me, nobody rang, when I posted a negative review not about the establishment but about the pricing he rang me asking me to retract the review and threatened legal action at the end of a heated half hour phone call, then he has sent me a letter saying he intends to sue for libel, loss of earning etc, please advise?

Berkshire, United...
Destination Expert
for Prague, Bohemia
Level Contributor
37,934 posts
78 reviews
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1. Re: Owner threatening to sue

I've read your review, and to be honest, I am not sure what you are talking about? Did they charge you twice for your stay? If so, then you have nothing to worry about, let them sue you.

Berkshire, United...
Destination Expert
for Prague, Bohemia
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37,934 posts
78 reviews
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2. Re: Owner threatening to sue

Or were you charged for something (brokage, mess etc) after you left? Is that the problem?

ceredigion
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11 posts
7 reviews
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3. Re: Owner threatening to sue

no, no damage or breakages. my bank statement showed two withdrawals of different amounts, I didn't know if I had been charged twice, why the two different charges, charged for something else etc etc, that's why I wanted them to ring me. They say its standard policy to charge each night separately?? and that's what the two charges were and then started threatening me to remove the post. Today I get a full sided piece of paper from the owner saying unless the post is removed then the post is damaging to future business, so he wants to sue for libel and any future loss of earnings, is this him just throwing his weight around or does he have good grounds, not sure if I should be visiting my solicitor for advice. He obviously doesn't tolerate anything put positive reviews, any negative he must force to be removed. So much for freedom of speech or having an opinion?

Wales, United...
Destination Expert
for Bargain Travel, Cruises, Swansea, Cardiff, Carmarthenshire, Neath, Port Talbot
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57,535 posts
453 reviews
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4. Re: Owner threatening to sue

I am not a lawyer, but in my opinion as long as you have told the truth an owner cannot successfully sue for libel. As long as two charges were taken from your account, you made two calls and they wer enot returned etc, you have nothing to worry about.

If the owner is correct, and two payments were taken because they charge by the night, this seems a little inefficient. Most hotels charge per night, but manage to take the total paymen tin one transaction.

Rather than threaten you, the owner would be better advised to respond to your review stating their side of the story. Owners are not allowed to contact or threaten TA members about their contributions and you should report this. There are far better ways for owners to go about things than making legal threats.

Edited: 26 October 2013, 17:36
Berkshire, United...
Destination Expert
for Prague, Bohemia
Level Contributor
37,934 posts
78 reviews
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5. Re: Owner threatening to sue

They did not contact her, she contacted them and not via TA...I would remove the review it does not make sense.

Illinois
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1,771 posts
95 reviews
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6. Re: Owner threatening to sue

This post is a lesson not to be too specific with your TA name and where you are from. I'm assuming the owner saw that the review was done by Sarah J from Ceredigion, and thus knew who to contact. If the OP had not used her real name and hadn't been so specific with her home, the owner would not have known who had written the review, especially if she had waited a little while to post.

Berkshire, United...
Destination Expert
for Prague, Bohemia
Level Contributor
37,934 posts
78 reviews
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7. Re: Owner threatening to sue

Read OP's post!!

I rang twice to ask them to contact me, nobody rang, when I posted a negative review ( I think she means when nobody rang THEN I posted a negative review)

Hampshire, United...
Destination Expert
for Eastleigh, Winchester
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4,923 posts
106 reviews
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8. Re: Owner threatening to sue

So was the total charge correct? Or were you overcharged?

If the actual charge was in fact correct I would probably delete and resubmit the review including an actual review of your stay but you could still include a comment that the billing process was confusing and that you had problems contacting the hotel to query it resulting in written threats to sue.

The truth is the best defence against libel.

Melbourne, Australia
Destination Expert
for Sydney, Bargain Travel, Food and Travel
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25,745 posts
65 reviews
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9. Re: Owner threatening to sue

>>> I didn't know if I had been charged twice, why the two different charges, charged for something else etc etc<<<

Do you know what the nightly rate was for the room? Most people know how much they're paying per night. You multiply that amount by the number of nights your staying. Take that amount and compare it to two charges on your bank statement - does it match or is it over? It's not hard.

As for how they charge you, it's entirely their prerogative, as long as the amount is correct. Is it god business to charge nightly? Perhaps not. Is it illegal? Absolutely not.

It's not just a matter of freedom of speech, when you imply fraudulent financial activity by the hotel.

I too would remove your review, but it's entirely up to you.

Edited: 26 October 2013, 17:54
Illinois
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1,771 posts
95 reviews
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10. Re: Owner threatening to sue

Agree, KVE, I know exactly how much I will be charged since I make reservations online and print out the reservation. I was at a hotel earlier this year where the final bill was different than what I had agreed to. I simply showed the front desk clerk what I had printed out, and it was promptly changed.