Know Your Delivery Rights to get What you Deserve!

We’ve all been there. You order something or schedule a service, and you’re told you need to wait at home. It could be for an entire day or just a few hours during the day, but no matter how long you’re told to wait, it  can still completely disrupts your day. The only thing that can make it worse is if the delivery or service installation is late. Or worse still, they don’t show up at all.

For most people, a delayed or failed delivery is just something to complain and move on from, but after you read this, you will no longer be one of those people. There is a way to fight back against delayed or failed deliveries. Yes, we understand that there are unforeseen circumstances that can change delivery people’s schedules, but they need to be held to a set of standards. And, hopefully, the tips below will help them move in that direction.

We’ve broken this article up into sections so you can find the information you need easier. The first will be if the item doesn’t arrive or is late and the second is several tips on what to do get compensation for a late or failed delivery.

Tips if an Item Fails to Arrive

Parcel and money

Ordering from a retailer is basically creating a contract between you and that retailer. Delivery time is part of that contract, so if they fail on that part, then you may have rights.

1. Find your item.

Before you lose your temper, find out the location of your missing item. While you’re looking for your package, remember that you made a contract with the retailer and not the delivery service. Of course, when you’re trying to locate your package, you don’t need to worry the retailer at first. Which means in this first step, you need to reach out the courier.

Most mailing companies now days have online tracking numbers, but if yours isn’t working or the courier service doesn’t have tracking, your best bet is to call the company. Talk to the courier and locate your package, finding out what the holdup is in the process.

2. See if you qualify for a refund or compensation.

If your delivery isn’t on time or if the package isn’t in the condition it was supposed to be in, then you have a few options:

  • Refund

Any orders done online or over the phone fall under the Consumer Contract Regulation. And you don’t even need to sign anything. Under this contract, you have 14 days to cancel an order and get a full refund. Keep in mind, however, that you’ll have to pay return delivery costs. We’re not suggesting this so you can be a jerk and cancel things you’ve changed your mind about. But, it’s a great way to get your money back if the delivery is late. Plus you can do it even if the package has been delivered.

Another little loophole to consider: The Consumer Contracts Regulation says that if you paid extra to get an item faster or on a certain date, and it comes late, then you do get a full refund for delivery fees.

Moving on to in-store orders. If you’ve ordered something like a washing machine or furniture in a store and arrange to have it delivered, you’re not protected by the Consumer Contract Regulation. However, if you want a little more protection, ask them to agree to a delivery deadline and mark it as “time is of the essence”. That will get you a few extra perks.

  • Work Compensation

If you had to take time off work to wait for a delivery, and if you have to arrange for a second delivery time, you can get compensation for time taken off work. We’ll discuss that more later.

  • More Compensation

Did you know that if your late delivery caused you stress or inconvenience, you may be able to claim more compensation. Again, we’ll discuss this more a little later on in this article.

3. Contact Your Retailer if Your Item Goes Missing

Remember how we mentioned above that your deal is between you and your retailer? Well, if your item hasn’t shown up, then you need to reach out them. They’re the ones who made the agreement to give you the item and by not doing so, they’ve breached their contract with you.

4. Contact the Retailer About Damaged Goods

Some businesses will claim that because you signed for a package, you accepted it, so if it’s damaged, that’s your problem. This isn’t true. When you sign for a package, you’re saying it’s delivered, not that it’s in good condition. Receiving an item that isn’t in the condition you expect means you have the right to compensation or replacement.

However, if you’ve signed saying that you’ve examined the product, then you’ve kind of signed away your right to compensation.

5. Deliver 101

Just to refresh your memory, or inform you if you don’t know, here are a few key points on delivery rights.

  •  You can send it back if it’s late
  •  You can give delivery guidelines when you order
  •  You made a contract with the retailer, not the courier
  •  If you took time from work, you can claim compensation
  •  If there’s no delivery date determined beforehand, you have fewer rights

Tips to get Compensation for Missed Work

Okay, now that we’ve gone over those points, let’s move in to what to do if you’ve had to take time off work to wait for a delivery.

1. Remember you have a contract with the retailer

We can’t say this enough! You made a contract with the retailer, so your issues should be addressed to them. Unless, of course, you’ve witnessed the courier damage your package. We’ve all seen the YouTube videos. You know what we’re talking about.

2. Have proof you suffered loss

We’ve gone over how purchasing from a retailer implies a contract. If you haven’t received your packed, that’s a loss and a breach of contract. If you’ve missed work and the package is late or doesn’t arrive, then they have caused you harm and should compensate you for the time and money lost.

3. Compensation only qualifies for extra time off

Unfortunately, you can’t ask for compensation for the first day that the package didn’t come, because you took that time off, anyways. However, if the item doesn’t arrive the first time and then doesn’t arrive at the rescheduled time, then you are due compensation.

4. Show you tried

You need to show that you put effort in to trying to get your package. That you tried to find other alternatives for pickup. Only if you had absolutely no choice to wait for your item to be delivered can you get compensation.

5. Different tricks for different retailers

This is a simple thing to remember: When you buy online, you are automatically protected by the Consumer Contracts Regulations. If you order in a store, however, you should use the phrase ‘time is of the essence’ to protect yourself, because Consumer Contracts Regulations doesn’t apply to in store purchases.

6. Consider extra costs

If your delivery or service didn’t come on time and there was added hassle, you may be able to claim for reasonable extra costs. For example, if you paid extra for a home delivery, the item isn’t delivered, and then you have to drive across town pick it up, someone should be paying for those petrol costs. Of course, these will all be dependent on how good you are at negotiating.

7. Keep it hassle-free

You do have rights that would stand up in the court of law, but you really don’t want it to get the far. The goal is to keep it between you and the company. So, while you do have legal rights, don’t throw those words around. Not immediately, anyways. Just let the retailer know that you know your rights.

8. Educate yourself on the retailers procedures

Many companies have compensation written in to their late delivery procedures. Before contacting your retailer, read up on their procedures, so you know what to ask for and what they legally owe you.

9. Tell the company

This is a simple step. Just call the company up and let them know your disappointments. Often, this is enough to get the refund you deserve. Use phrases like ‘disappointed’, ‘breach of contract’, and ‘didn’t

meet your expectations’. Also, ask for a manager or supervisor. Ask their name and position before stating your issue. This lets them know they’re serious.

10. Write a letter

If complaining by phone doesn’t get you any results, write a formal letter explaining the situation. Keep a copy of the letter on file and make sure you make them sign for receiving the letter. As mentioned, you don’t want to go to court, but this will protect you just in case.

11. Negotiate

Exercise your negotiation skills! Know what you want and be ready to debate why you deserve it. Also, use the phrase ‘without prejudice’ when you accept compensation. This makes the offer unbinding and unusable against you.

12. Go to court

If nothing else works, it’s time to go big. Take them to court! Don’t try to do this on your own. Get a professional or someone with experience. And only do it if it makes sense financially. Keep in mind that the court process isn’t swift.

13. Small claims process

You hear a lot about small claims court, but this is actually a process in the civil claims court. This is the court for under £10,000 and it’s much less formal than bigger courtrooms.

14. File online

You can make your court claims online. Just be prepared to have a specific amount that you’re ready to state for damages.

What is the Verdict?

MoneySavingPigWe hope these tips come in handy the next time you have a problem with one of your deliveries. We love feedback so please use the comment section below. 

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