Ethical & Legal Responsibilities of a Hotel

Written by hans fredrick
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Ethical & Legal Responsibilities of a Hotel
Hotels have legal responsibilities to their guests. (hotel image by Yuriy Rozanov from

Hotels have certain ethical and legal obligations to their guests and customers. When people study at hotel management programs, this is one of the subject areas covered. It's the responsibility of hotel management to make sure all staff and employees are aware of their code of conduct, and to see that it's enforced.

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Physical Safety

Hotels have a certain legal obligation to protect the physical safety of their guests. This encompasses several different aspects of managing a hotel. Any physical hazard that might pose a threat to the safety of a visitor, such as a wet floor, must either be corrected, or adequately marked with warnings. This applies to threats that can be seen by the guests, and those that may not be immediately visible. Hotels also have a certain amount of responsibility to provide reasonable protection to guests from harm that might be caused by other guests of the hotel. If harm occurs to a guest that can be legally attributed to a direct action or non-action of the hotel staff, the property could be legally liable.

Personal Property Protection

There are laws in place designed to protect hotels from being held liable if personal property belonging to guests is lost or stolen on hotel property, but there are exceptions to them. If the theft or damage of an item that's in a guest room is attributed to hotel staff, the hotel may be liable. Hotels usually post signs that declare that they're not liable for damaged or missing property. Property that goes missing while left in common areas will not be the responsibility of the hotel. If guests wish to have property protected, they're usually required to place it in the hotel safe. In the event they do so, their property would be insured should it go missing or become damaged.

Industry Ethics

All hotel employees are held to certain ethical responsibilities. This can be seen in the ethical codes established by regional hotel associations such as the Nebraska Hotel and Motel Association. These ethical standards require that hotels follow the laws and safety standards that apply to their industry. They require that innkeepers deal in an honest and fair method with their customers. They also emphasise policies that are against all forms of discrimination. According to the Nebraska association, they will strive for "conformity to our policy of non-discrimination in all endeavours."

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