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Parcel Force smashed guitar but won't pay compensation

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Hi all, I'm here to see if anyone can guide me on my rights please as sofa I've just found a brick wall to bang my head against!


I sold a guitar on eBay and sent it via Parcel Force 48 fully compensated at slightly more than the guitar was valued for peace of mind to the buyer. The guitar was in a thick padded Gibson case (soft type) that lots of inbuilt protection. The guitar was then put in a slightly modified cardboard guitar box and wrapped tightly so there was no room for it to move around. The box was then covered top to bottom and around the middle in white and red fragile tape so it could be seen from all directions.


When I took the box to my local post office the post master said "due to security reasons can you please tell me whats in the box?". I told him it was a guitar and he laughed and said he knew due to the shape. I paid £16 for the postage using Parcel Forces 48 service and an additional £15.00 in compensation to insure it up to £600.


The buyer contacted me a couple of days later and said the guitar had snapped where the neck meets the body and sent me pictures. I immediate filed a claim with PF, sent proof of postage, compensation, pictures of the guitar before and after and proof of value.


Two days later I got a email back saying it was rejected as the packing was insufficient. I challenged this as I had sent many guitars before using the same packing method and asked for evidence. They showed me a guide to packing a guitar and how they "recommend" there method but couldn't show me anything in there terms of carriage that a claim would be rejected for not following there "recommendation".


I was then passed to an manager who then pointed out that there was a problem. Under PF terms of carriage it states that items excluded from the enhanced compensation include all musical instruments. So it turns out that they have said they have turned my claim down due to insufficient packing however they doing even offer insurance (compensation) for any musical instrument never mind how its been packaged. PF told me that its the PO fault as they should know the PF terms and that they do not offer enhanced compo therefor should not of sold it and made me aware. They said that the PO have a system called Horizon and that clearly gives them clear details on what can and can not be covered.


Taken from there website - Musical instruments - no enhanced compensation is available.


I went back to my local PO where I shipped the guitar and the post master became immediately defensive when I said PF will not and do not offer enhanced cover on any musical instrument, He claimed he did not know this and he was accepting no liability. He later phoned me maintaining he was not liable but admitted after looking through terms of carriage found the exclusion for musical instruments but referred me back to PF.


So this is where I am. I believe that I was miss sold compensation by the post master at my local post office. He knew it was a musical instrument, he asked me what it was. He still sold me the compensation even though they did not offer it for what I was shipping. If he pointed this out I would never of sent it and told the buyer to collect in person, cancel or take it at his own risk.


PF have offered me the £15 I paid in compensation back but I have refused this as I believe that if I accepted it I would close this situation and have no comeback.


So where do you recommend I go next? Has PF been neglectful in handling my Parcel or have I been miss sold by the post office?


I am currently £500 down and can't really afford to be. I have an appointment at the local CAB office but this isn't for a couple of weeks due to them being busy and my work commitments.


Any advice would be greatly appreciated.



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You don't have a claim agianst PF since they do state there is no enhanced insurance for musical instruments. (with carriers these days you do wonder what they are willing to carry)


Potentially you might have a claim against the PO, since oyu informed them what is in the parcel and they then sold you insurance. I'm sure that someone will be along later with a greater brain than myself on these matters but I would be thinking of making a claim against the PO through the courts.

It is easier to enter a rich man than for a camel to pass a needle

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Hi James and welcome to CAG


My opinion is that the Post Office is responsible as they accepted the parcel. They are just trying to wriggle out of their responsibilities.


I would take it as far as I could with them and if still no result, a letter before action. This may have the desired effect but if not, you could sue them in the courts.


I do seem to remember a case (quite a while ago) where the Post Office lost with a similar case.


This thread, while not the same as yours may offer you some advice on what to do.



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I know this is a slightly old post, but I had a similar experience with a musical instrument.


I was aware of the 'no enhanced compensation' as it was on the 'items not included' list,

but I did phone and ask if the instrument would be covered for at least the basic £100.

I was told yes... but PF own staff on their helpline.


As I had sent this instrument to myself many times over with PF I did not really have too many worries.

I pack it well and it arrives when it should.

(I travel around and don't have a car.)


On receipt this occasion however, it was cracked at the top of the frame.

I was giving up playing it, and wanted to sell it on Ebay.

My harp devalued from £350 to £100 over night!


Sadly I was away travelling and didn't find out until some months later, but as a regular customer I made a claim anyway.

No good!

It was past the 60 days.


Not only that even when I took it to the top they said my case did not warrant any goodwill and sent me packing.


Shame on you PF!

How did it get broken in the first place!

Next time I will offer collect only....




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