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  #1  
Old 12-06-2008, 06:37 PM
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El Conquistador El Conquistador is offline
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Default I fought FedEx, and won!

I have certainly read my share of FedEx and UPS horror stories and the brick walls folks have run into trying to collect monetary compensation for the damages inflicted by same. Well, I bring you hope!

I sold and shipped a mandolin via FedEx Overnight from California to Georgia. I made sure everything was packed really well and "insured" it for the sales price. It arrived with a small, but distinct, crack at the tailpiece. Not only was it going to cost the new owner the price of the repair, but, the loss in value as well. (It was a somewhat rare piece with a great deal of collectors value.)

First, you need to know that only the shipper can file a claim. So, I immedieately contacted FedEx and got the usual runnarround. They really ask for all kinds of stuff that almost always gets people to give up. They try to make you do everything online. You have to look very hard to find a number to actually talk to someone. However, I must admit, once you do talk with someone, they are relentlessly nice.

I finally got my claim made online and recieved a letter a couple of days later from them asking for original bills of sales, "legitimate" estimates of repair, and legitimate estimates of value. And, ominous warnings of getting everything to them within the legal timeframe, yet, no timeframe is mentioned.

Now, I had purchased this thing in '87 and didn't still have my original reciept so that meant I would need an appraisal. I called the guy who bought the mandolin and asked him how much he was willing to do to get compensated. He asked if he could get the price of the estimate back in the claim. Again I called FedEx and was told that the price of the estimates could be re-imbursed. My guy went ahead with both the appraisal (Gruhn), and the estimate and sent them to me.

It was at this point I discovered this: http://www.oldcloset.com/claims.htm

This is the golden key, the rossetta stone, the open sesame for all your shipping claims. Armed with this knowledlge, you need only to throw the name around liberally when speaking to FedEx and UPS employees and everything changes.

After speaking the third time to the FedEx claims department and letting them know that I knew exactly what my rights were, they folded like a house of cards and did not even require an inspection of the instrument! I simply sent them the estimate of the mandolin both pre and post damage, the estimated cost of repair, the cost of securing same, and they sent me a check for the entire amount!

Knowledge is power!
LC
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  #2  
Old 12-06-2008, 06:43 PM
walkin_man walkin_man is offline
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Sweet! Thanks for the info.
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  #3  
Old 12-06-2008, 06:43 PM
mcphersonnut mcphersonnut is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by El Conquistador View Post
I have certainly read my share of FedEx and UPS horror stories and the brick walls folks have run into trying to collect monetary compensation for the damages inflicted by same. Well, I bring you hope!

I sold and shipped a mandolin via FedEx Overnight from California to Georgia. I made sure everything was packed really well and "insured" it for the sales price. It arrived with a small, but distinct, crack at the tailpiece. Not only was it going to cost the new owner the price of the repair, but, the loss in value as well. (It was a somewhat rare piece with a great deal of collectors value.)

First, you need to know that only the shipper can file a claim. So, I immedieately contacted FedEx and got the usual runnarround. They really ask for all kinds of stuff that almost always gets people to give up. They try to make you do everything online. You have to look very hard to find a number to actually talk to someone. However, I must admit, once you do talk with someone, they are relentlessly nice.

I finally got my claim made online and recieved a letter a couple of days later from them asking for original bills of sales, "legitimate" estimates of repair, and legitimate estimates of value. And, ominous warnings of getting everything to them within the legal timeframe, yet, no timeframe is mentioned.

Now, I had purchased this thing in '87 and didn't still have my original reciept so that meant I would need an appraisal. I called the guy who bought the mandolin and asked him how much he was willing to do to get compensated. He asked if he could get the price of the estimate back in the claim. Again I called FedEx and was told that the price of the estimates could be re-imbursed. My guy went ahead with both the appraisal (Gruhn), and the estimate and sent them to me.

It was at this point I discovered this: http://www.oldcloset.com/claims.htm

This is the golden key, the rossetta stone, the open sesame for all your shipping claims. Armed with this knowledlge, you need only to throw the name around liberally when speaking to FedEx and UPS employees and everything changes.

After speaking the third time to the FedEx claims department and letting them know that I knew exactly what my rights were, they folded like a house of cards and did not even require an inspection of the instrument! I simply sent them the estimate of the mandolin both pre and post damage, the estimated cost of repair, the cost of securing same, and they sent me a check for the entire amount!

Knowledge is power!
LC

Good for ya glad it workt out for you.
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Old 12-06-2008, 06:54 PM
Ranger1964 Ranger1964 is offline
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Wow I thought beating the carrier was simply legend of old. I once heard a similar tale, a legend of sorts. It goes like this, "Once upon a time, a long time ago, a man won an argument with his wife. But it was just that once, and a long time ago!"





Glad it worked out for you!
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Old 12-06-2008, 07:35 PM
Ryler Ryler is offline
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That is excellent knowledge to have for all shipping I may do in the future. Thank you so much for posting it. And congratulations on the outcome.
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Old 12-06-2008, 07:50 PM
mmmaak mmmaak is offline
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Thanks for the link!

I don't live in the states, but I have shipped with all the "common carriers". Does this apply to DHL or are they considered "uncommon"?
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Old 12-06-2008, 07:56 PM
Matt Mustapick Matt Mustapick is offline
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Congratulations, and thank you thank you...the Internet at its absolute finest!
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Old 12-06-2008, 08:07 PM
rosewoodsteel rosewoodsteel is offline
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I don't even use FedEx anymore.
A few weeks ago I needed to ship a guitar to Texas and wanted it insured for $2500. FedEx told me they would only insure up to $500. They told me if I needed more insurance, I had to purchase it from a private company.
I took the guitar to UPS the following morning and had them insure it for $2500.
FedEx was a waste of my time.
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Old 12-06-2008, 08:17 PM
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copied, pasted into Word.doc, and saved with the hopes of never having to use it. Most excellente!
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Old 12-06-2008, 08:58 PM
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I had a claim with FedEx a few years ago for a crack in the finish during shipping. I had to jump through their hoops, but I eventually got a check for the estimated repair costs (around $450 if I remember correctly) and sent it to the buyer. Persistence is definitely key.
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Old 12-06-2008, 09:29 PM
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Congratualations, LC, and thanks for the info.

Bill
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  #12  
Old 12-06-2008, 10:27 PM
donh donh is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mmmaak View Post
Thanks for the link!

I don't live in the states, but I have shipped with all the "common carriers". Does this apply to DHL or are they considered "uncommon"?
in the USA, they are considered "dead"

anywhere they are still in business they are indeed a "common carrier"

:-)
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Old 12-06-2008, 10:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mmmaak View Post
Thanks for the link!

I don't live in the states, but I have shipped with all the "common carriers". Does this apply to DHL or are they considered "uncommon"?
DHL is considered "in financial trouble"

Don't use them. My shipper stopped using them several months ago because they are bringing out all these obscure insurance requirements and regulations to make claims more difficult as one way to save money so they don't go bankrupt.
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Old 12-07-2008, 12:04 AM
Tony Tony is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rosewoodsteel View Post
I don't even use FedEx anymore.
A few weeks ago I needed to ship a guitar to Texas and wanted it insured for $2500. FedEx told me they would only insure up to $500. They told me if I needed more insurance, I had to purchase it from a private company.
I took the guitar to UPS the following morning and had them insure it for $2500.
FedEx was a waste of my time.
That's strange: I just shipped a guitar with FedEx and insured it for $2500.
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Old 12-07-2008, 01:54 AM
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cpmusic cpmusic is offline
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I work for FedEx, and while I'm not authorized to speak for the company, I'd like to clear up a couple of things.

First, FedEx doesn't sell insurance. It's either because FedEx is not authorized to sell insurance or because insurance laws vary from state to state (possibly both), but what you buy from FedEx for the extra payment is an increase in declared value over the standard amount. That doesn't mean you won't be covered if your shipment is lost or damaged, but the distinction is an important one from a legal standpoint.

Second, while I may be biased, I don't believe the company wants to cheat anyone on a legitimate claim. They don't want overpay, but cheating honest customers is no way to do business. The problem is that, like UPS and USPS, FedEx is often the target of fraudulent claims, so they have to be cautious. Filing online is a good and fast way to get started, but it's vital to follow up by phone; the customer service line is sufficient for a start, as they can transfer you to anyone else in the company. And, of course, documentation is important.

I hope this helps. I know it's frustrating when a package is lost or damaged, and that alone can try anyone's patience, but persistence is important. Be civil, but keep at it.
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Last edited by cpmusic; 12-07-2008 at 02:00 AM.
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