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Old 07-25-2007   #1
willieWAO's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 154
Raft company employment trouble

So i was employed by a some-what reputable raft company for 3 1/2 years. The other day me and the management had a dispute which ended in me quitting the company. My problem now is my paperwork. My training logs, qualification run and class IV checkout run, is all in the filing cabinet at the company. The management says this information belongs to them, and they would give me copies. Anyone have advice? How would i go about obtaining that paperwork? Is that info really theirs? If i started work for another company, couldnt that company request the information from my former employer? Any comments and advice is greatly appreciated.
BTW- If i knew it would become this difficult i would have had my paperwork before i resigned.

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Old 07-25-2007   #2
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Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 60
I'm not a lawyer but I'm fairly sure that those records DO belong to the company. These records were assembled and compiled by the company to keep them in line with their liability insurance. I don't think that your going to have a legal leg to stand on in this case. However, out of common courtesy, I cannot think of any reason that they shouldn't share the records with you provided you haven't burned your bridge, which it sounds like you might have. Those records can be requested by a future employer but there too there is no legal requirement to provide them as they are proprietary property.

Lesson learned: All professional river guides should keep a personal river log that they update each time they guide a trip or take a clinic. This way if the sh*t hits the fan someday you can provide some semblance of documented competency. It's also really nice to have when you go to get another job.

Good luck

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Old 07-25-2007   #3
no tengo
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Baytopia, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1876
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 1,768
raft cos in CO are required by the state to keep them for three years after an employee leaves. i am sure they can make copies for you.
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Old 07-25-2007   #4
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 151
As a first step, contact the Arkansas Headwaters Recreation Area people (The River Rangers). They may have some info on who owns your paperwork, and may be able to assist you in some way. Also, try the Colorado River Outfitters Association, they may have some info.

Speaking from experience, I have never had to provide my original rookie year training log that demonstrated my 50 miles or hours or whatever, nor have I had to produce any documentation that shows I was "Class IV Certified". I have had to provide my own personal river logs, and this is pretty much a matter of course all over the country. This is the log that YOU, AS A PROFESSIONAL RIVER GUIDE, should keep yourself. This is your resume, your qualifications, your means of proving yourself legit.

When I was guiding, I would scratch down in a notebook the river section, my load, the level, if I had any swimmers, and my tip. This was mine to keep. I would do it when I filled out my time sheet everyday. From this I would recopy this without the extra stuff, just the section and mileage onto a another log that I would copy and give to the company, along with my CPR certs.

If you don't have that daily log, go back and reconstruct your seasons with a calendar handy. This will give you a pretty good rendition of your river log. Be conservative, i.e. don't inflate your mileage, and you shouldn't have any problems.
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Old 07-25-2007   #5
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 246
You can kiss those orginal logs goodbye. Get a copy of them and call it good. If they won't copy the logs for you, then you may want to persue further action.
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Old 07-25-2007   #6
Breckenridge, Colorado
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 83
just get the photocopies. The raft company needs to keep some file on record for 3 years. If you are planning on guiding in CO get the 50 initial hours too. Document miles for TL and guide instructor after your check out run and move on.
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Old 07-29-2007   #7
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 25
Teaser? No details of dispute between you and mng. Was it a safety matter? Sounds like some useful info could be in the background of this issue.
Can't agree more with the log book advice. Another advantage of a River Log is that when you get to your dotage you can look back an remember trips long forgotten...
Your story also points out the need for making copies of your training paperwork the first part of your river log. Good luck.
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Old 07-29-2007   #8
Summit County, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2007
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 28
I don't understand the problem here..You said they would make you copies, right? What's wrong with that?

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