I am a valet parking company owner and operate valet parking for restaurants, hotels, etc. A customer valet parked with us, and was charged a $6.00 fee for the service. When our attendant went to retreive the vehicle, the car had a broken back window and personal items were stolen. Customer is claiming $4,000 in damages from break-in and theft of personal items.
The customer was given our parking stub clearly states our contractual limits of liability for theft or loss of use ($250). A copy of the contract is conspicuously posted at the valet station on a sign with large print. I think these postings conform to the section regarding bailments in the Ca Civil Code.
Additionally, we exercised reasonable care when taking custody of the customer car/keys including 1) locking car 2) parking car in well lit and reasonably safe parking lot 3)locking keys in a lockbox at the valet podium. What else are we supposed to do, post a security guard in front of the car??
Does this claimant have a case against us? Are there any other codes or case law pertaining to this type of situation which might be of interest to either party? Any help someone can provide would be most helpful.