Should Your Retail Firm Join The Rush To Civil Recovery?

Retail firms all over Canada have jumped on the Civil Recovery bandwagon in recent months and security firms offering this service have seen their client books almost burst at the seams. Civil recovery is turning out to be a highly effective way of fining shoplifters or recovering damages through a civil court. So, with ever-rising wages, energy prices and shrinkage, it is worth hiring a security firm to operate a civil recovery scheme in your stores?

What Is Civil Recovery?

6551534889_9c8ae52997 It’s a way of recovering your financial losses from people who steal from your stores. Security companies send out letters to shoplifters their guards catch demanding payment usually in the region of $600 to avoid the issue going before a civil court. Depending on the security firm you use, your store will receive up to 40 percent of all the money that the firm recovers. It does not replace the criminal process and no evidence of criminal guilt is required.

How Does it Work?

As a retailer, you simply have to hire a security firm to oversee your store security. They will provide personnel, monitor CCTV equipment and deal with the civil recovery process. From the moment they detain a shoplifter, the civil recovery process will be handled entirely by the security firm. There are no legal costs related to implementing the process for you as a retailer. The shoplifter gets handed a notice and will later be mailed a letter from a lawyer working on behalf of the security firm. The letter will demand a settlement amount and threaten the individual with legal proceedings before a civil court.

The Advantages Of Civil Recovery

The main advantage is that the scheme is a proven way to lower rates of theft in stores that implement it. There are no up-front costs and as the security firm keeps 60 percent of whatever they manage to recoup, recovery is self-financing. As a retailer, you stand to benefit from lower rates of theft, the chance to recoup some of your lost profits and the potential to earn enough money to put towards the cost of maintaining and upgrading other security features such as CCTV and tags.

Drawbacks To Implementing Civil Recovery

Choosing the right security firm is essential as you are effectively entrusting them with your customers and not all of those caught shoplifting are the serial offenders you might imagine. While many people caught will be serial offenders, there is a significant sub-set of ‘accidental shoplifters’ who you risk alienating. This group includes some of your loyal customers who honestly forget to pay for something. For instance, imagine a hardworking mother preoccupied with stress from problems at work, who fails to see her kid sit on a candy bar in the cart. Heavy-handed recovery tactics with the threat of court proceedings may scare this people in this group and cause you to lose them as customers. It is therefore important to only work with established security firms whose professionally trained security guards you can trust to act ethically at all times.

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  • 16 Orfus Road Suite 201
    Toronto, ON
    M6A 1L6
    (647) 478-8376
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    Peter Kopelis
    pkopelis@riskprotectiongroup.com
    (647) 478-8376 Option 1

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