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I was going over my expenses and found a £200 charge from a hotel I stayed at over a month ago. I called to ask why, and they said that there was a "smell of smoke" and they "found something in the room" to indicate I had been smoking.

I'm not sure what they could have "found" but unless I smoke in my sleep I'm sure it's something explainable. As for the "smell of smoke" I imagine it was added to justify the charge but I guarantee they didn't smell any smoke in my room - I don't smoke ordinarily.

What is the proper procedure for disputing such a charge? If the hotel don't backdown over their claim, what legal recourse is there?

Guessing this would be civil so judgement on balance of probability - anyone know of similar case study cases?

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If you paid by a credit card, the proper procedure is to simply do a chargeback. If the hotel doesn't back down, then the credit card network will hold arbitration. I wouldn't expect them to win, since they don't have anything but their word for it.

The hotel does have the option of suing you, but it's unlikely that they will do so for £200, and again they don't have much of a case.

Their third option is to just report it to credit reporting agencies as a unpaid debt. For this, there's not much you can do other than have the fact that you dispute it included in your file. Theoretically, you could sue them for defamation, but that would be impractical.

  • Thanks for the reply I'm really appreciative – HelloWorld Dec 10 '19 at 18:01

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