Table of Contents:
- Service Authorization
- Responsible Communication
- Remote Service
- Protecting Your Data
- Software Bugs - Hardware Wear & Tear
- Equipment Left Behind
- New Device Setup
- Storage Encryption/Decryption
- Privacy Statement - Communication
- Privacy Statement - Data
- Licensing Limitations
- Service Guarantee
- Manufacturer Warranty Voiding
- Turn-Around Time
- Orders and Shipping
- Who I provide service to
If you require an at-location or in-shop consultation contact me to make an appointment. Please note that making appointments with me require both of us to be prompt and communicative about delays/cancellations ahead of time by at least 2hrs. If I fail to show up for our appointment I will wave the first hour of the consultation. If I am late for an appointment over 10mins I will take %25 off your fee. If you fail to show up you agree to pay the first 1 hour of consultation fee. If you fail to contact me, or contact me under 2hrs before the consultation about a delay/cancellation, or show up late, you agree to a %25 addition to the fee. Please see my rates for more information.
You authorize my service when you bring in your device, request service via other means, for instance, but not limited to, an E-mail or Phone request. I will have you approve the service by an Authorization or Service Order Form. You can approve this authorization or order by signature or email response. Your approval can happen in a phone conversation with me or an electronic/letter communication but I usually confirm that authorization with a follow up Authorization or Service Order Form. When you authorize a service, I have a responsibility to provide you a reliable experience which usually results in a successful outcome. There are certain conditions that fall out of my responsibility and liability to you, like inadvertent data loss, or hardware failures while servicing a device. Data loss can happen while Encrypting/Decrypting, scanning a file system of a storage device, while diagnosing, repairing, or replacing hardware and/or software. I rely on you to protect your investment by maintaining backups of your data before requesting service.
Its very important to me that I provide the best possible service and that means that after I completed my service on your device, I want to return your device to you in a timely manner. I rely on you to provide me with timely responses to my requests, especially if you require a quick turn-around on the service of your device.
In certain cases, failure to follow up on my request for communication in a timely manner may increase the estimated turn-around time and if the delays in communication significantly impacts my work flow, I reserve the right to charge additional fees outside any fees I quoted or estimated to you to compensate me for any over-use of my bench time.
Unless my work schedule is nearing the end of the day, I will respond to communications within three hours, or less. There are a few exceptions to this time frame: If I am on a emergency appointment where I cannot get away, I am on vacation, I am out sick, or it is during off hours. If I am occupied with any of these situations, I will respond to any and all communications on the next business day. My home page should have a post with a status update on my availability if something happens that prevents me from operating inside of my normal working hours.
Evaluations (10min, in-shop only) are free. Please note, an evaluation is a quick guesstimate, based on my experience, of what the problem might be, and the costs involved. It’s not a precise result. If I communicate any costs to you during this evaluation, they are estimates of what costs might be, and not precise quotations. If you want an accurate assessment/diagnostic, quote of costs, request a full diagnostic/assessment.
Diagnostic fees cover my time in troubleshooting an issue, and for me to provide you with a expert report on what I think the problem is based on my observations, or for me to provide you with a recommendation in the event the device is unable to be repaired due to time or cost. Diagnostic fees are paid upfront before the service is rendered, or, in the case of a at-location appointment, upon completion of an assessment, diagnostic, or survey/estimate in cash or check form, with the option (at my discretion) of using your Venmo or Paypal mobile app at my office when you drop off your device.
Repair fees are usually in addition to any diagnostic fees and are paid when the repair is complete, before you pick up your device, or before I leave your location in cash or check form, with the option (at my discretion) of using your Venmo or Paypal mobile app at my office when you pick up your device.
Consultation fees are per-hour, with a one hour minimum, REGARDLESS OF THE RESULTS of the service. Paid in cash or check form, with the option (at my discretion) of using your Venmo or Paypal mobile app before I leave your location.
Research/Recommendation fees cover my time in creating a estimate/quote, or communicating recommendation information at your request. The fees are charged per project or per request. Payment can be in cash or check form, with the option (at my discretion) of using Venmo or Paypal.
Project/Service fees are set fees that I charge for specific projects or services that I know are going to be fixed turn-around times. The fees are charged per project. Payment can be in cash or check form, with the option (at my discretion) of using your Venmo or Paypal mobile app at my office or before I leave your location.
Please be prepared to pay cash or check if you unable to get your mobile app working.
All payments can be made via check or cash. If you prefer to pay by credit card, you can paypal me, or [venmo me](https://account.venmo.com/u/scottrlarson) at @scottRlarson. On Venmo, my handle is connected to the business part of their service. So if you do not see my listing, switch to the business tab. All payments are due immediately upon the return of the device, for at-location services, before I leave the service location. For online services, two weeks after you receive a bill of service. My rates for at location services are per-hour with a one-hour minimum regardless of the result. If you have an expectation of a result that goes beyond my terms, please communicate that upfront, before any services I provide. You are liable for all payments after the service is started.
Notice about late or unpaid payments
There is a $1.00 fee (Per Day) for late payments. Too many late or unpaid bills will result in services being halted at a time of my discretion, or your service will be re-prioritized for timely paid customers. Repeated late or unpaid bills will result in the termination of the service relationship.
If there are outstanding payments, or if I suspect that there might be a situation where they payment method you used to pay me for my services might be returned or charged back, I will retain your equipment until the service is paid, or in the case of a concern with the payment method, until I receive written conformation that the payment I received will not be rescinded after your equipment returned. Any equipment left behind for over a period of 120 days will be destroyed/recycled. You agree that any equipment you leave behind may be sold to cover any outstanding payments not received within 60 days of the bill of service date. You understand that all personal data will be irrevocably destroyed to protect your privacy. If you leave behind a device for servicing, Scott Larson will make every effort to contact you, but if you are not reachable via Phone, Email or Post within this time frame, regardless of the reason, you are giving up ownership of your equipment. You also understand that or you fail/refuse to pay me for my services with in 60 days of the bill of service, after I destroy the data on the device to protect your privacy, I will sell that equipment to cover my loss.
When you bring your device in for servicing, after a repair, or when you agree to allow me to remotely manage your device’s security, backup or upkeep, I may install certain applications/shortcuts on your desktop that help provide ongoing services or to maintain a business relationship.
Please note that remote service requires exceptions to be configured in any security software that is installed on your computer. If you do not trust me or do not want to make these exceptions to your security software, I will not be able to provide any remote services.
With your permission, and with your interaction, remote software works by allowing a specific individual, like myself, to access parts of your computer. It’s designed to limit access to the technician, like myself. Even though I take every precaution to protect the security of your device and your data during remote sessions and setting up remote software, its setup and use is, may open your computer up to a skilled attacker. You understand that in allowing me to remotely access your computer, you take full responsibility and liability for any unintended results that may happen as a result of some form of exploitation of the software.
Below are a list of software I use and may install on your device/s and you can uninstall these applications (Excep for Bitdefender GravityZone Small Business Security) at any time if you feel you do not need them. If you have an ongoing service with me, you might want to make contact with me first:
- Bitdefender GravityZone Small Business Security: A security package that helps protect your device from threats. I ususally install this product as part of an ongoing service contract, by your request, to manage the security of your device. To protect your device from attackers, this software cannot be uninstalled without my interaction.
- Zoho Assist: Remote control software that helps me connect to your computer remotely to help you with a problem or maintain your device. There are two types of Zoho Assist:
- Zoho Assist which only works when you request help and
- Zoho Assist Unattended Agent, which allows me to connect to your device without your interaction. I only use this software to provide a requested service to you. I usually install the unattended agent only on a device that is under a system care/management agreement. I only make remote connections to your device with your knowledge and consent, usually under a pre-arranged appointment, unless an agreement is in place to perform a service in another fashion.
Protecting Your Data
I make every effort to protect your data, but I am not responsible nor liable for preserving your data, or knowing what kind of data existed before the servicing of any device. I perform backups of your device a before a start a service, but my backups are for internal use and done for safety reasons only. If something goes wrong with a servicing, I can use this backup to restore the computer to its original configuration.
This means that whatever data was on the device, completely gets restored from my safety backup. Due to the way in which my backup software takes a snapshot of the entire storage device and through my own private verification processes to confirm the image is intact after the back up, there is no possibility of data loss at any point during my safety backups.
If you receive your device back after servicing and notice a loss of data, look to your backups, or verify the data did not get moved to another location. Also, I only keep this backup for up to 4 months after the servicing to protect your data privacy.
It’s important that you do not rely on my backups because you could misplace, or forget where your data lives and assume data is lost when, in fact, it didn’t exist on the device in the first place, or it got moved before your device entered into my possession.
It’s always important to make your own backups, and maintain knowledge of what data you have and where it lives before requesting any service, if you need help performing your own backups, contact me and I will send you info. If you need extended guidance, contact me to help you with your backup strategy.
Under dire situations, if you contact me in the 4 month period, and you need more time, I may, at my discretion, hold on to the backup image for 2 extra months, totaling 6 months. There is no guarantee that the data you are looking to retrieve, exists in my backups. For my own specific liability reasons, I cannon hold onto data any longer than the time that was specified and will have to delete it to protect your privacy with in the time periods specified above. If you have any questions about my status as a service provider from a legal perspective, please review my “Right to Self-Regulation” in my Terms of Service .
Please be aware that migrating to and from different technologies can result in problems with 3rd party hardware or software. I am your facilitator in that process, I am not representative for these third party technologies, that are out of my control. If I encounter an issue with any 3rd party technology (Hardware or Software that was not setup by me), I may need to troubleshoot/diagnose the issue, handled under my diagnostic fees, before I can continue the work. In these cases, it’s important to make manual backups of all your important data before making a service request.
Your data is your responsibility. Please be sure that the data you want transferred actually exists on the device. If you have any special programs/data outside of written documents, music, videos and pictures, I may ask you to show me where this data is stored before I can proceed with any data transfer service. That being said, I cannot account for data I don’t know you have. Verify for yourself any important data exists on the device before requesting transfer services.
Software Bugs - Hardware Wear & Tear - End of Life Hardware
In the process of updating software, or making changes to the way software functions on your device, bugs and errors can be introduced by the way in which software interacts with the operating system. Also failures in the functioning of hardware could be introduced as a result of my servicing. Some of the resulting failures could be related to, but not limited to: design flaws, wear and tear, glitches, bugs, you or any third party mishandling of hardware/software prior to servicing or improper maintenance. If this situations arises, additional costs outside the quoted or estimated fees might be required. My liability and responsibility stops at my service guarantee. If I fail to complete a specific piece of work, or I misconfigure/mishandle your device I will take responsibility.
Due to bad experiences with hardware that fails over time, I reserve the right to recommend a replacement instead of a repair for hardware that is over 7 years. Please be prepared to cover the costs for the replacement device and my time for migrating your data. The costs usually run around $1,000, or more depending on what requirements you have.
Equipment Left Behind
I am very proactive in keeping you in the loop on the status of your device. If for some reason I do not hear back from you on a communication for a period of 120 days, depending on my time constraints, I am assuming you do not want whatever equipment you have left behind, and your equipment will be irrevocably destroyed, or may be sold to cover any costs. I will do my best to secure erase your data to protect your privacy, but I am not liable for any results that occur from any kind of breach to your personal data from devices that are left behind though I excel at protecting your data. Even though I am not required to, I will make attempts to contact you before 120 days. This may involve all of the following during this 120 day period: a few calls, an email, a text message (If a mobile number is on file), and a post letter(IF I have an address for you, on file).
New Device Setup
When you purchase a device from me, bring a new device in for setup or a tune-up, I will remove, replace, or disable features that I deem best for my customers. These fine tuning operations are done to improve customer experience.
This might include removing, replacing or disabling (also by your request): security software, preloaded apps that are not part of the required core functionality of the system, or hardware that is causing performance bottlenecks. For example, I might increase the memory size, or the speed of the storage device.
At all times the device will be remain functional, but you might have an expectation about the device that I deliberately changed. If you have a required need for a default application, or setting/customization, that would have existed with another device provider, please let me know so that we can talk about that requirement.
If you request a removal of an application, you will be liable for any ramification of that request. For instance: If you request that a default security package be removed due to the fact that you prefer to install your own and you forget to perform that operation, and that inaction causes some kind of harm to you, another party, or to any property; You, and you alone are responsible.
Due to Windows 10/11 data collection practices and the impact it has on customer privacy, when I install, reinstall, or tune-up Windows 10/11 on any machine that enters this office, I remove and disable the unnecessary and in many cases unwanted functions listed below. You can opt to install or re-enable the app or feature in question yourself by launching the Microsoft Store App on your computer, doing a search for the missing App, and then installing it. (Please note that I do not guarantee any performance improvements on any of these adjustments.):
- I disable all Telemetry and Data Collection services.
- I uninstall all Microsoft Windows 10/11 apps, except the basic, or useful ones that would prevent the normal operation of the device: Mail, Microsoft Store, Calculator, Sticky, Windows.photos, Soundrecorder, MSpaint, Screensketch, Cortana.
- I may Install new default applications to make use of: Photos(Fast Stone Image Viewer), Internet Browsing(Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome), Email(Mozilla Thunderbird) Videos(VLC), and Media Creation(Burn Aware).
I do this to give my customers a good experience with their device by decluttering the operation of the Windows operating system. This has the potential to improve the performance and user experience.
In many cases, storage device encryption prevents me from providing the services you request. I require an unencrypted storage device before I can provide any services. If your storage device has been encrypted by the default Windows installation, I will decrypt it using the credentials you supplied to me to provide the service. If you require your storage device to be encrypted, you can re-enable that encryption after the service is complete. Having a device with unencrypted storage may open your data up to theft, protecting your data is your responsibility. If you have questions about this topic or need help please, Contact me before requesting service.
Privacy Statement - Communication
During the servicing of your device, by your request, I may have to access certain areas of your file system, or online accounts, that might contain private information. I will not knowingly take any action that involves breaching the privacy to your digital information unless I receive a lawful court order compelling me give possession of your data to an individual acting in a position of law enforcement. I make every effort within my ability to secure any private/personal communications/data from any locations that I service devices at. There is a possibility that my communications (that might contain information about you, or a 3rd party) could be intercepted by an online or at-location attacker without my knowledge. If my physical location or my internal network is breached, your private information could be compromised. In cases, like these, beyond my control, I am not liable nor responsible for any results that occur due to the above situation.
Privacy Statement - Data
When you bring your device to me for servicing, I make an encrypted safety backup of your device’s system data. This includes the system hard drive, or storage device, and/or any other device that is required for the system to function normally.
I do this in case a issue occurs during, or after the service is complete, that would prevent you from accessing your device, or data. I keep this backup in encrypted form for around 4 months. This means that if my equipment were ever to become lost, or a theft occurred, the encryption method, 256 AES, serves as a significant deterrent against accessing your data stored in my backup. This safety backup is not a guarantee that I can provide to you a copy of your data, at your request, in the event you experience a loss, after the return your device. If you did not purchase a data-backup, and if I still have a backup of your data on hand, depending on my storage free space requirements at the time, I can provide you with a copy of your data under a data restore service.
To provide to you a service such as, but not limited to, a data transfer service, I also may need to access certain areas of your device’s file system or online accounts that could contain private information. I have strict principles against using information outside the services I provide to you, and I have processes in place to protect your private information from falling into the wrong hands. Some of those processes are communicated through this document, but if you have specific concerns, please reach out to me. That being said, I may share your personal/private information if it’s to provide to you a specific service that I subcontract to another provider, such as, but not limited to, a data recovery service provider (By your request to have data recovered), or to comply with a lawful order from a common law court. In the case where I pass information to a 3rd party provider, they have their own privacy policies that your data, or information would fall under once the device/information is in their possession. If you have specific questions, or concerns, that are outside of these described scopes, please contact me to get clarification.
Software Licensing Limitations
In certain cases, when upgrading, or replacing computer hardware; or moving a software license to another computer hardware configuration, there are no absolute hard and fast rules regarding what will actually happen when a certain software product key/license is applied to different set of hardware from the original configuration the license was applied to. If the software product you depend on, Like the Windows Operating System, is not able to be re-activated after the hardware replacement, upgrade, or software license move, you may be obligated by the licensing of the product to purchase a new license. This may incur an additional expense outside of any quotes, estimates or fees that I specify in my communications to you about costs. Any licensing challenges that come up do not change the fees owed to me for the parts I order on your behalf, or the fees related to the service I provide to you. It also doesn’t obligate me to provide you any free of charge services due to this issue. If you have questions about this limitation, please let me know before agreeing to any fees.
As a professional computer technician, I’m responsible for addressing operational related issues with technology at the time of servicing.
Preexisting unrelated/related software or hardware problems can be revealed at any time during the servicing. Occasionally these problems can be missed during a servicing. These issues can cause pervasive and reoccurring issues that may require follow-up and secondary servicing/intervention to resolve.
When these rare situations arise, If I spot the issue during my servicing I will reach out to you to let you know of a problem. When this happens, I may need to perform a diagnostic to resolve the issue, I will bill you for my diagnostic time under these circumstances, if you have any questions about these follow up fees, please contact me. Also If the problem is missed during servicing I can address these issues at a later date at my regular rates. Reoccurring issues that are attributed to the same conditions that caused the original issue, can be handled under a reduced fee (at my discretion). If the issue is closely related to the original issue from a previous servicing, I may reduce the rate in half for the second visit. Also In some rare cases, if there is a third or forth visit, I may reduce my rate to 75% of what I originally charged.
If I intuit that an issue is going to be systemic during a servicing, I reserve the right to offer a recommendation for a solution, on in lieu of a resolution.
All my rights as a service providing individual are reserved.
When I provide you a service, or if an arrangement that benefits both you and I is agreed upon, or in the works, I reserve the right not to subject myself to background checks, licenses to do business, be employed by another, or any process that subjects me to any authority other than my own.
Please note that this right is not a claim of lawlessness. I am responsible for my conduct in my personal and professional life. If there is a claim of wrong doing by an individual, I will answer that claim and take responsibility for any action I take that harms another living being.
I reserve the right to: refuse to accept you as a new customer, halt work in progress, if there is a breach in my terms of service by you, your employees, or any other person that operates on your behalf. Such possibilities for me to refuse or halt work are: using abusive or dismissive language, in writing, or in person. Making a habit of being late, or not showing up for appointments. Making a habit of failing to communicate when I require a response to continue to provide you service. Making a habit of not paying me on time or when I require it.
Manufacturer Warranty Voiding
Some manufacturers have Warranties that become voided if repairs are performed by a 3rd party. Be sure you are not voiding your warranty by having me work on your device. I am not liable nor responsible for any out-of warranty fees, or any results that occur due to this situation.
All of my services are guaranteed to be free from errors in execution. I will resolve any issue that crops up due to my error free of charge. Any device purchased from me that has parts containing a replacement guarantee from the manufacturer, also carries my 1 year service replacement warranty from the date of service. Unless I am unable to deliver the service, or item in question, all fees for provided services and any related items are final and non-refundable. Although I make every effort to ensure my customers are happy with the services I provide, shipment delays of any kind, dissatisfaction of a product or service does not warrant an exception from payment. I provide no guarantees on actual performance of hardware or software even though I make every effort to provide accurate projections. I also provide no guarantee on any interactions between 3rd party services and any solutions I provide.
Software support is usually outside of the scope of my Service Guarantee
If you request software or a service to be setup, maintained, or repaired on your device/s, and you require support during or after my servicing, I may be required to interact with the software or service provider to resolve the issue. In addition, if a change was made post-service, that caused the issue, I might be required to undue or resolve those changes. In both cases, you may incur additional charges.
I operate on a first come, first serve basis. Unless you want a priory service. If you need a faster turn-around, see my priority rates.
During my regular service schedule, I prioritize servicings based on the following: 1. Priority Customers (paid priority service 1-2 day turn-around), 2.1st Class Customers (3-7 day turn around, regular visits), and 3. 2nd class customers (1 week+). If I am waiting on parts to be shipped, I put the servicing for that device on hold and handle the next device in line based on the prioritization above. I also prioritize customers that have already paid or are regularly paying customers for service, over those that have an outstanding payments or overdue payments.
During the evaluation or in-take period, I will do my best to communicate to you the length of time a service might require. With certain technical problems, the length of time to service your device can range from a couple hours, days, or even weeks depending on the issue, and the time may change depending on what crops up during the servicing. If you cannot be without your device for the length of time specified above, purchase a backup device, or ask me about acquiring a temporary replacement loaner device. If my loaner stock is available, I can lend you a device until the work is complete. If you require access to your personal, or business data, that data will need to be transferred to the loaner device. Also applications might need to be installed to make use of that data. Talk to me about data/application setup fees if this is a requirement for you. Depending on the amount of data to be transferred, or applications to be installed, turn-around times can range between a few hours to a few days depending on the size of the data, the complexity of the transfer, or my current time constraints. For faster service, check out my priority service pricing.
Orders and Shipping
I tend to order hardware from online suppliers, instead of relying on brick and mortar vendors for the reasons specified in my “Laptop Buyers Guide” article. As I prefer to use high quality parts, in most cases, I will not depend on purchasing products from local distributors. When purchasing products from online vendors, shipping times can sometimes be hit or miss. Any times I communicate about shipping are estimates and are subject to change depending on courier conditions, or the information I have at my disposal at the time.
Items that get lost in shipping are handled under the courier’s claim handling system. Only after completing the claim process, and waiting for that process to complete, will you be compensated for lost items.
Shipments that don’t arrive on time, or are late requires resolution with the online vendor. In these cases I have to submit a case, and wait for the process to be complete for shipments to be redelivered. This process can take weeks, or in rare cases, months.
If you are not prepared to wait for packages to be delivered, which under normal circumstances can take 3-7 business days, and in rare cases, such as items shipped from out of the country, up to a month, so I can perform my services, please reach out to me to discuss alternatives. I am not liable, nor responsible for delay shipments. Should you wish to cancel any services related to delayed, or items lost in shipping, my service fees are not refundable.
When there is a need to order parts for the servicing of your device, I may mark up the item by 10% to cover price changes related to post COVID market volatility. I’ll use some of that fee to cover handling or the work involved in finding a replacement. I may return the a portion of that fee as a credit on your bill, or refund you if there isn’t a service to apply it to.
Who I provide service to
I provide technical service solely to individuals. If you own a business, or you work for a business all service related dealings will be handled by you and I. If you want someone else to engage with me on a service in question on your behalf, please provide your consent in writing to allow that someone to speak for you, and act on your behalf.
When you request a service from me, recurring or otherwise, it is by contract. Please note that any arrangement is only between you and I. As such, if I provide a service to you that results in an exchange of property (My services for any payment method you use to compensate me) that exchange does not include any 3rd party.