Author - David Moyes, CAS Policy Officer
Have you ever found that a parcel delivery to your home has been left in a strange place, and perhaps lost or damaged as a result?
In Fife we have an array of wheelie bins – four of them each – and while I think they give our streets a kind of colourful barcode of environmental conscientiousness, I know some of my neighbours think otherwise. However no one in Fife would deny that these bins – specifically the grey one, which is for paper and cardboard – provide a vital refuge for parcels that are delivered when the intended recipient is out. My Edinburgh-dwelling colleagues are surprised that any delivery driver would put a parcel in the bin, but in Fife it’s a relief to come in to find a card on the carpet with “grey bin” scrawled beneath some kind of corporate jolliness such as “sorry we missed you!” or “while you were out…”.
Unless, of course, its bin day.
Last year at CAS we helped a local bureau client claim compensation for the loss of a parcel that the delivery driver had placed in a bin on bin day, and ended up at the dump. We were unsure what the regulations actually had to say about this – if a delivery operator is contracted to deliver a parcel, what actually counts as delivering it?
As far as rules go, it’s important to be aware that the situation is different for Royal Mail compared with other delivery operators. Royal Mail postmen and postwomen are not allowed to leave a parcel in a visible on unsecure place. However other delivery operators can define their own rules in their terms and conditions, so if you’ve had issues in the past it’s a good idea to be aware of what the T&C says.
But this issue has two sides to it. On one hand, no one wants their parcels to be stolen or damaged because it was left in an unsecure place. On the other hand we all want our parcels delivered first time, and don’t want to have to collect it from the local delivery office – which, for those who have reduced mobility, can be a real problem.
We’re going to be putting together guidance to help consumers understand their and the operators’ rights and responsibilities, and to make it easier for consumers to get things sorted out when they go wrong. To help us understand how things can go wrong, tell us if you’ve ever had parcels left in weird places, or lost one or found it damaged as a result of where the delivery person left it.
Leave a comment below or email me at email@example.com to tell us your stories.