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What Happens if UPS Damaged My Package?

Ever asked the question: “What happens if UPS damaged my package?” When damages occur to a package during its shipment, the shipper or receiver often demands reparations. At the same time, they quickly identify a guilty party and blame that person or company for the damage that occurred to the package. If you go online, you can easily find a host of complaints regarding UPS and their damages policy.

However, many of the claims filed that are investigated by UPS are denied (if they are denied) for clearly outlined reasons. The most common reason that a damages claim will not result in repayment is improper packaging. UPS outlines proper packing technique for deliveries, and if the item was not packed well, it is not ensured by the repayment policy. This policy is only void if the delivery truck is involved in an accident or the parcel is damaged during a search.

Customers who ship packages need to pack their boxes properly. If they do, when damages occur, they can easily file a claim. Upon claiming damages, UPS will inspect the damages and make their own report. If the claim is authorized UPS will review the documents and ensure that the customer agreement was met. Once the documentation is verified, a refund will be issued. Everyone wishes it could be that straightforward every time.

The truth is, UPS is a business like any other business. They must protect their policies strictly, and when they can find reason to retain payment for services rendered, they will do so. Customers who are uncertain about the safety of their packages in transit may want to insure a package.

If they do not purchase insurance, taking photographs of the packaging is wise (not all people have to time for such rigorous detail work). In the event of damages, a photograph of packaging by a shipper is a quick way to verify a claim that the parcel was improperly handled during shipment. Any customer of UPS should be fully aware that the company has a reputation as a customer-first establishment, and every customer should be prepared to fight for their rights as a customer by proactively engaging the disputes and keeping documentation. Keeping these thoughts in mind, you will never need to worry about what to do if UPS damaged my package.

4 Responses to What Happens if UPS Damaged My Package?

  1. Laura Fellows says:

    UPS damaged my package-a cello, for
    which additional liability coverage was purchased in the amount of $3000. The
    same cello, manufactured by the same company is listed on the Internet for
    $3300. Repair estimates were $2900 and $3650. UPS has stated this is a valid
    claim (damage was due to rough handling & not the packaging). UPS has
    stalled for three months even though they have had all of the required


    This stalling seems arbitrary &
    capricious. They have not actually denied the claim; they just keep looking for
    a smaller number-a much smaller number, even though they have told me outright
    on the phone that they know that would not replace the cello they destroyed.


    They informed me on the phone that
    there is a clause in their tariff policy whereby they can pay a purchase price
    if there is a sale. The policy actually reads, “where the involved property was sold to the consignee”. In
    this case the cello was shipped to a local music store (the consignee) for
    convenience-they were not purchasing the cello. And the business owner who
    shipped the cello to me-we had a “handshake agreement” and there was no
    invoice. UPS policy states that they can “request”
    an invoice. They have refused to do anything unless they could obtain this
    invoice that does not exist. So, they are doing nothing.

    The UPS interpretation of all this is
    that the consignee is not where the cello was shipped and signed for, but whomever
    UPS wants it to be. They also seem to believe that if the cello was being sold
    to me without an invoice and it was not shipped to me, well it must be fraud.
    Huh? There is no law stating that there must be an invoice for every purchase,
    and “request” does not mean ultimatum demand.

    I have read that they only pay about
    14% of their claims. From what I can see they do spend an incredible amount of
    time-and money-fighting valid claims rather than paying them.

  2. Anonymous says:


    My experience with UPS has been that if your package is
    damaged and it is uninsured, they will not pay. On the other hand, if you paid
    to have it insured and it is damaged, they still do not pay. Their default
    position is that any damage is due to improper packaging. The Internet is full
    of these stories. Fed Ex treat their customers far better.  Go
    Fed Ex.

  3. Bill Gunneson says:

    UPS Claims

    Package was
    picked up by UPS at my home 2/15/13 (Friday) in Delaware

    The item was
    wrapped and taped with card board, forming an inner box around the item, then
    $20.00 worth of bubble wrap was wrapped around that, and then it was placed in a
    box. The box was not only taped closed
    at seams but several runs of packaging tape was used to tape in all directions
    to keep package secure.

    If the
    packaging wasn’t adequate the driver should have said so.

    Item is
    delivered 2/22/13 (Friday) in California

    received at destination after delays by UPS stating address was wrong, which it
    was not. Receiver calls the evening of
    delivery and states that the item is broken.
    I request he take pictures and send, which he does immediately.

    following day the claim is filed with UPS 2/23/13 (Saturday). I am told by UPS representative that UPS will
    either, (1) Inspect the damage at receivers home, or (2) Pick up package and
    take it to UPS station for inspection, and then I would be contacted.

    Feb 23 I
    receive an unknown $12.00 charge from UPS in email

    March 2nd
    I receive an unknown $4.62 charge from UPS in email

    numerous (6-8) calls to UPS I am finally told the item is on its way back to
    me. I inquire about the claim/inspection
    and am told it has not been inspected.

    March 9th I
    receive a $91.25 charge from UPS in email (return shipping from California to

    calls are placed and confusion still continues on the part of UPS as to what is
    going on with this, like the call I received from the Delaware UPS station asking
    if this package was suppose too be coming to me or going to California?

    And still no
    answer regarding the claim.

    Finally on
    3/15/13 (Friday) I receive a voice mail from UPS stating that the claim is denied
    because of improper packaging.

    Through the
    tracking number I see the package is scheduled for delivery on 3/18/13 (Monday). It does not arrive until 3/20/13 (Wednesday).

    delivering driver is the same driver that picked up on 2/15/13. The box doesn’t resemble a box, but looks
    more like a ball of cardboard and tape.
    Looking at my expression the driver was curious and asked something like
    “what is going on with this”? I told him
    the long story as he shook his head throughout.
    I also told him that the claim was denied which he said was “normal”. I explained the damage, a metal cover that
    was broken and he stated that in order for that to have happened the box must
    have been dropped. I asked if he
    remembered picking up the package on 2/15/13 and he stated that he did, and
    that it was a late pickup (5pm) and that UPS had sent two trucks to pick
    up. Yes, he remembered right, because as
    he was loading the box in his truck that night another UPS truck pulled
    up. I asked what he thought of the packaging
    when he picked it up and he stated that “it seemed fine”.

    Upon my
    inspection, some of my original packaging materials are not present.

    So in total
    about 5 weeks for UPS to handle this from start to finish.

    As for the
    damaged item, a replacement cover is probably about $100. If UPS had inspected in California like they
    said they were going to do and contacted me I could have given the buyer the
    $100 for a new cover and story over.

    In addition
    to all this, since the item was an eBay transaction, and with all of the delay,
    which I was faulted for, the buyer filed a formal complaint against me with
    both eBay and PayPal. PayPal decided in
    the buyers favor, refunded him and back charged my account the selling price and
    shipping fees, a total of $1053.00.

    And of
    course my reputation as a seller on eBay has been tarnished.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Not ever using UPS again…I used extreme care in packing something and was confident the double boxing and a nod from the person in the UPS store that it was good to go. I ship many things and always use great care in packing, sometimes over packing. They mangled the shipment, and I have to say, with or without insurance, UPS needs to understand that it is someones property that they are entrusted with…needless to say, they threw the responsibility of their recklessness back on the UPS store where I shipped from and they would not make good on the damage. The owner sighted that “We are independently owed and operated”…Oh really…so all those miles on the road are either your responsibility or not…fortunately there are other options in the shipping business.

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