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What should you do with customers who don’t want monitoring or other services

May 17, 2023
What should you do with customers who don’t want monitoring or other services
          Does your All in One agreement cover “non-monitored” customers?  We don’t have many but what about those customers that refuse to have their system monitored?    Is there language or can we add something that would show that the customer has “declined” monitoring services?
 Jarey S
          Good question.  Customers can decline monitoring for many reasons and some are, I suppose, reasonable.  A DYI customer may want notice only to his cell phone [you can still charge for that if you set it up with equipment that has to go through a manufacturer’s server and charges for that service, even if it forwards to the customer’s cell phone.  A customer may be happy with a local bell or siren; some are satisfied with a yard sign and few decals. 
          The All in One [all of them] has language that you have offered more or there is available more equipment and services.  There is always more the customer can get, right up to surrounding the premises with a moat, roving guards or the National Guard.  There’s always another system and devices that will cover more and in different ways.  If you don’t offer it you are letting the customers know it’s available from others.  It’s probably an obvious point, but should be made.  In fact it’s so important to make, I strongly recommend using and getting Disclaimer Notice signed in addition to the All in One.  We are, of course, discussing something other than commercial fire.  For commercial fire you would be very careful to tell the customer that monitoring is not optional, and the fire alarm system is approved by the Fire Marshall and that’s the bottom line.  They don’t want it, then that will have to appear prominently in your Fire All in One and the Disclaimer Notice.
          There is a difference between security equipment and services that are available to enhance security and what might be considered a basic minimally accepted security system.  For example, a customer may want to pay for a front and back door contact, one motion detector and a keypad; doesn’t want other exterior access doors and second floor protected.  That design is obviously deficient by any standards and you need to be sure your contract states that; that’s what the Disclaimer Notice, which is not a contract, is for [that’s one useful purpose of the Disclaimer Notice].  In that scenario I don’t think it’s necessary to make a point of stating that the customer has declined cameras or other devices, but the printed language of the Disclaimer Notice will have that and lots more itemized. 
          The Disclaimer Notice was designed when a customer sued claiming a burglary loss and claiming a back-up radio was never discussed or offered.  The case would have had a different outcome if there was a Disclaimer Notice.
          So monitoring is certainly something that a professionally designed alarm system would expect to include; just remember there lots of other bells and whistles.

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Ken Kirschenbaum,Esq
Kirschenbaum & Kirschenbaum PC
Attorneys at Law
200 Garden City Plaza
Garden City, NY 11530
516 747 6700 x 301