How To Handle Repairman's Furniture Damage?

Good Questions

Q: I contracted my condo's regular air conditioning repair company to replace my air conditioner while I was recently out on business. The work was done while I was out of town, and the service man kept in constant communication with me during the repairs.

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When I arrived back in town, however, I found that my mid-century sofa was apparently bumped with either the old or new unit, as some of the wood overlay was chipped and damaged. It's evident one of the units was place on the sofa since there are depressions on the cushions (that I assume will come out once I resume using the sofa), so this likely happened during transport of a unit.

As is obvious from the photos, the wood damage is not a scratch or dent that I can simply have someone fill in, sand, and refinish. This is a decorative portion that would require intricate handcrafting. I love the sofa, but I have a feeling the repairs would cost more than I'm willing to pay right now. I'd likely be inclined to just stain the damaged portions so they're less noticeable.

My question is, what is the standard protocol when it comes to damages that occur during this sort of situation? Is it considered accidental and to be expected? Or would it be reasonable to ask for some payment? Would I need to get the law involved? It seems like a small thing, but I am so sad about it!

Sent by Stephanie

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Regina is an architect who lives with her husband and children in Lawrence, KS. As a LEED Accredited Professional and longtime contributor to Apartment Therapy and The Kitchn, her focus is on healthy, sustainable living through design.

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