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Posted (edited)

I'm another one of those victims that are out of pocket due to Hermes negligence/fraud. Wish I'd read posts on here before I used them. As a result I am out of pocket by £1240.

 

I have been sent the usual emails from Packlink and hermes and have decided to pursue a claim. I hope to update you with the progress. 

 

Thanks to this forum I have compiled the following: 

 

Quote

 

Letter of claim – parcel reference number xx. Claim reference number xx-xx

 

On 13th June 2020 I used your services to send a parcel containing a iMac 27inch computer, with value £1246 to an address in xxx

I have now been told by yourselves and also by Packlink that you have lost the item.

 I have tried beginning a claim process – but although I have made strenuous attempts to contact your offices – both by your formal complaints route and by other means, I have had no success.

Looking around the Internet, I now understand that you are overwhelmed by complaints because of your generally poor handling of people's property, your technical breakdowns which have resulted in incorrect scanning of barcodes and the confusion of labels, the possible theft of items from your warehouse – and also apparently the routine sending by you of parcels placed in your care to an auction house in Birmingham – often bearing senders addresses or recipient addresses – and often within as little as three weeks of the item having been sent.
 
You should understand now that under the Contracts (Rights of Third Parties) Act I enjoy all the rights of a contracting partner – and it is on this basis I shall be issuing a court claim against you.
 I'm afraid that given your record and your reputation, I'm not prepared to accept any further delay and I'm afraid that access to your customer service function has now become unreasonably difficult to the point where I consider that you are deliberately obstructive.

As a result of this, I'm writing to inform you that unless I have full reimbursement of the value of the parcel – which was properly declared – plus the fee paid for the courier service within 14 days that I shall bring a claim against you in the County Court and without any further notice.

Yours faithfully

 

 

I have prepared my claim ready to send out after 14 days: 

Quote

 

The claimant who is a litigant in person use the services of the defendant courier company to send a computer value of £1239.56 to an address in xxx.

Tracking reference xx claim reference xxx.
The defendant courier service lost the parcel and has refused to reimburse the claimant or to process his claim.
The claimant seeks reimbursement of £1239.56 plus the courier fee of £5.92 plus interest pursuant to section 69 of the County Courts act 1984

 

 

Appreciate your feedback on the above, I hope to keep you posted on the outcome.

 

Thanks

Edited by ns64
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Maybe you could just start off by running through the story please. If you would give us a bullet pointed chronology.

In particular, what was the item? On what basis have they denied liability? Was the value of the item properly declared?

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appreciate the prompt reply, :

  1. The item was an iMac 27inch computer
  2. In terms of liability, hermes have asked me to refer to packlink to handle on my behalf. And have always asked me to contact Packlink/Ebay on every correspondence.
  3. At no point do I recall being asked to declare the value of the item when ordering via packlink. But I assume that It is tied to ebay item on sale?

Chronological events below, worth noting the buyer did also communicate with hermes throughout but got nowhere.

  • 06/062020 -  listed an iMac 27inch computer  (2018 version) on ebay
  • 13/06/2020 - sold on auction for  £1239.56, used PackLink, only service available for the size and weight was hermes. It was next day delivery, and I selected that. I don't recall any option to insure etc
  • 13/06/2020 - received email from packlink with label to print out
  • 15/06/2020 - item was collected by Hermes, a receipt for collection was provided
  • 16/06/2020 - tracking on hermes site updated to indicate that the item is to be sent to depot (which depot not specified)
  • 17/06/2020 - receive the message 'We are sorry your parcel has been delayed, we'll have it on the move in the next 24 hours' 
  • 20/06/2020 - contacted hermes support to get an update, told they will escalate further but requested to contact retailer so they can contact on my behalf
  • 21/06/2020 - contacted ebay, who advised to contact packlink to step in, packlink responded with Delays, damage and any type of disruption with your parcels are always imputable to the carrier you have chosen to deliver your parcels. Told I would be eligible for £25 insurance.
  • 22/06/2020 - sent email to Packlink to request update,
  • 23/06/2020 - response from Packlink, responded with At the moment we have no update on this case. We have requested information from the carrier and we hope to be able to offer you a solution soon. 
  • 26/06/2020 - contacted Packlink for further information, same response as that received on 21/06/2020. Packlink request further information on the description of the packaging, shape etc. This was provided.
  • 30/06/2020 - created a loss claim on Packlink
  • 30/06/2020 - contacted CEO to raise a formal complaint expecting reply in 7 days, indicating that item was not sent out with reasonable care and skill, asked for refund of service fee and out of pocket expenses.
  • 30/06/2020 - create case on resolver, sent complaint to hermes
    • ebay opened dispute from buyer that he has not receive the item
  • 01/07/2020 -  received  response from hermes .."We can see that the parcel has not moved in our network since then." and to contact Shipper/Reseller . Responded to say unacceptable and quoted not handled with care.
  • 03/07/2020 - told by hermes forwarded to support team and they have a delays due to recent events. 
  • 06/07/2020 - ebay refunded the buyer
  • 07/07/2020 - sent claim letter expecting response within 14 days.
 
 

 

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Thank you.

So we are claiming in respect of a lost computer whose value was properly declared or of which Packlink/Hermes were aware because of the eBay process.

You are the sender, you sold the item on eBay. You chose not to take out their compensation cover.

 

Hermes is trying to shove your to Packlink – but Hermes is not formally declined liability.

Your letter of claim is fine – but I think that I would have given Hermes a little more time – particularly because I would want to see the basis on which they declined liability.
So I think that sending the letter of claim was maybe a little precipitative.

It will be very nice, for instance, if they declined liability on the grounds that your computer contains glass. Believe it or not, this happened before with the television.

Of course I think you have got a good case – but at the end of the day it is open to a judge to decide.

I would suggest that you hold fire on the letter of claim – even though you have sent it – and push forward a claim and see what actually happens. I would try to give it at least another couple weeks because hopefully Hermes will decline the claim and you will then have some definite evidence of their grounds for refusal – or else, they failed to deal with it and that also you would be helpful to you.

If you feel that you don't want to wait then by all means issue the claim on the fifteenth day. However I don't think it's can cause too much extra delay if you give it another two or three weeks – probably three, before issuing the claim.

In the meantime I hope you read around this forum about how to bring a small claim in the County Court. I hope you read all the Hermes stories and been through the slideshow. You could also register with Moneyclaim – if you haven't done so already.

 

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Thanks, I have registered on Moneyclaim. The slideshow was very helpful thanks.

I will wait a few weeks longer and see what they respond with and keep you updated.

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Chase them up a bit – maybe twice a week so that you've got a good paper trail of having done your best and the lack of response on their part.

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Just to update on this, received the anticipated reply from Packlink. Still chasing hermes every week.

 

Quote

The compensation claim for loss of the shipment XXX in favour of XXXX has been accepted.
 

⚠️ CONCEPT AMOUNT PAID VIA
Goods Compensation £25 PayPal
Postage cost refund £ 4.93 + VAT where applicable Same payment used to pay the label

 

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Okay well I suggest that you decline the offer from Packlink and continue chasing Hermes and maybe in about seven days or 10 days time you can consider pursuing a letter of claim and then starting the county court claim.

 

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Thanks, I have requested Packlink decline the compensation. It fell on deaf ears and they sent it anyway despite declining more than once 🙄

 

Regarding the claim, I will be submitting the below explanation, does it look ok? 

 

Quote

The claimant who is a litigant in person use the services of the defendant courier company to send a computer value of £1239.56 to an address in XYZ.

Tracking reference XYZ claim reference XYZ.
The defendant courier service lost the parcel and has refused to reimburse the claimant or to process his claim.
The claimant seeks reimbursement of £1239.56 plus the courier fee of £5.92 plus interest pursuant to section 69 of the County Courts act 1984

 

Regarding the timeline of events, its quote verbose, but trying to include as much detail:

 

06 June 2020 listed an iMac 27inch computer  (2018 version) on ebay
13 June 2020
sold on auction for  £1239.56, used PackLink (which passes on value to courier service I assume). Hermes were the only service available for the size and weight . It was next day delivery, and I selected that. I don't recall any option to insure etc. Received email from packlink with label to print out.
15 June 2020
item was collected by Hermes, a receipt for collection was provided
16 June 2020
tracking on hermes site updated to indicate that the item is to be sent to depot (which depot not specified)
17 June 2020
received the message 'We are sorry your parcel has been delayed, we'll have it on the move in the next 24 hours' 
20 June 2020
contacted hermes support to get an update, told they will escalate further but requested to contact retailer so they can contact on my behalf. Advised this would be better approach than going to hermes directly
21 June 2020
contacted ebay, who advised to contact packlink to step in, packlink responded with "delays, damage and any type of disruption with your parcels are always imputable to the carrier you have chosen to deliver your parcels". Told I would be eligible for £25 insurance.
22 June 2020 sent email to Packlink to request update
23 June 2020
response from Packlink, responded with "At the moment we have no update on this case. We have requested information from the carrier and we hope to be able to offer you a solution soon." 
26 June 2020
contacted Packlink for further information, same response as that received on 21/06/2020. Packlink request further information on the description of the packaging, shape etc. This was provided.
30 June 2020 created a loss claim on Packlink
 
contacted CEO of hermes to raise a formal complaint expecting reply in 7 days, indicating that item was not sent out with reasonable care and skill, asked for refund of service fee and out of pocket expenses. * create case with hermes, sent complaint to hermes
 
* ebay opened dispute from buyer that he has not receive the item
01 July 2020
received  response from hermes .."We can see that the parcel has not moved in our network since 17th June 2020." and to contact Shipper/Reseller . Responded to say unacceptable and not handled with care.
03 July 2020
told by hermes forwarded to support team and they have a delays due to recent events. 
06 July 2020 ebay refunded the buyer. I am now out of pocket
07 July 2020
sent claim letter to hermes, will plan to take to claims court if not refunded out of pocket expenses. expecting response within 14 days.
08 July 2020 sent email to Hermes to ask if further updates
09 July 2020
sent email to hermes and packlink asking for update and if they will arrange for me to get refunded
10 July 2020
Packlink sent email confirming item is lost. Only £25 compensation £ 4.93 + VAT for postage service will be offered since enhanced compensation not bought.
14 July 2020
I declined the insurance claim offer from Packlink citing out of pocket expenses should be
 
compensated. Packlink respond with we have offered the insured value.Also send email to hermes that I would like out of pocket expenses.
15 July 2020
I declined the insurance offer from Packlink again. Hermes respond with "The reseller has their own policies to follow for these scenarios. This is why you are best speaking directly with them so they can make any further arrangements they feel necessary which may include a replacement or a refund." Respond to hermes with "I have exhausted all options with the retailer and third party, the claims process will only offer £25 compensation"
16 July 2020
Packlink sent payment of £25. + 24.92 + vat despite declination. Email hermes I want out of pocket expenses. Respond with "please contact the reseller as you don't have your item and it is the best way for you to get further assistance."

 

 

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The particulars of claim are fine – presumably you are not intending to send the timeline – but they do seem to be saying that you insured the item and that there was insured value declared. 14th of July 2020

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Thanks for the reply. I do not recall packlink providing this ‘enhanced‘ option  on purchase at all. There is a standard insurance included, to quote there email.

 

Quote

We are so sorry that your chosen carrier declared the parcel as Lost. 

We issue the compensation based on the insured value.

From our records your shipment is only covered by STANDARD COMPENSATION, you did not purchase ENHANCED COMPENSATION, therefore the amount to compensate is £25.


If it is was available it must have been very discrete or hidden entirely 

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You need to realise that for a claim of this value, Hermes are likely to defend it quite enthusiastically. There is a lot at stake for them – not just the money involved here, but also the general principle as to whether you should insure against their negligence or they should insure against their negligence.

Of course it would be easy for them to restructure their tariffs so they simply start charging more for items of different value – but they choose not to do this and it says to me that this is a weakness in the system. Instead, they charge a standard delivery fee for the weight and volume and then invite you to insure yourself against their negligence.

It seems to me that a requirement that you should purchase an insurance policy against their negligent handling of your goods is grossly unfair. You pay them their delivery fee and yet for that delivery fee in effect they don't undertake to deliver without you having to shoulder all the risk if they don't do their job.

However, you must be certain that you did declare the value of the item correctly or at least through the eBay mechanism, but her needs were aware of the value.

It worries me that you say that you "do not recall…". I don't think this is very convincing in court. The courts are full of people who "do not recall" that they did something or they didn't do something. You hear all the time with politicians that they "didn't recall" something or other.

I'm afraid that nowadays it's taken me almost as a cagey way of avoiding the truth.

There isn't a whole lot to lose if you bring this case and lose it – simply your claim fee and your allocation fee – a couple of hundred quid I suppose – but you might as well give yourself the best chance and that is you need to be completely certain and you need to say in court that you are completely certain. If you say in court simply that "you don't recall" then I think you immediately had the benefit of the doubt over to Hermes.

I think this case is winnable – but not without effort and not without being completely certain of your ground. Be sure that Hermes will not say things like "they are unable to recall…"

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I had better add, although my last post might seem very negative – I'm just trying to give it to you straight. I think this is a very winnable place and of course we will help you all the way – but you have to understand that it's not slamdunk and as I've tried to emphasise, if you start approaching this radiating doubt about your position then you reduce your chances of success substantially.

I've explained you your risk factors. Of course if you win then you will get all of that back plus your money and you would have given Hermes a real slap which they badly need. In fact you would have delivered a slap to the entire courier industry because they all do the same thing – take your money to deliver something and then one additional money to insure themselves against their own negligence.

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Posted (edited)

Thanks, it's not negative at all and I would prefer it straight - I really want to give Hermes a slap! I am trying to confirm the value is declared; Packlink's email just shows the value I paid for the service, along with tracking details.  I have just got off the phone with Ebay, and they have no clue. So I believe when you use Packlink outside of ebay you are asked to declare the value. I'll confirm with Packlink if the value is declared via Ebay implicitly..

Edited by ns64
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Get screenshots of everything

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Just finished chatting with Packlink and they confirmed the value is declared via Ebay, I have a transcript and screenshot  (attached) of the conversation .

Screenshot 2020-07-20 at 09.46.27.png

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  • 1 month later...

just to keep you updated, received a response from small claims. Hermes have asked to go through mediation and  they dispute the claim as expected. My next steps are  to reject mediation and and meet the judge

 

Their defence

Why they disagree with the claim

Quote

1. If any part of the Particulars of Claim are not expressly admitted or denied below, such parts are denied by the Defendant entirely.

 

2. The Defendant serves this Defence subject to the following objection to the manner in which this claim is brought. The Particulars of Claim fail to provide details about any contractual relationship which is alleged to exist between the Claimant and the Defendant.

 

Background

3. The Defendant is and was at all material times a company limited by shares in the business of providing delivery services on a business to business, business to consumer and consumer to consumer basis.

 

4. In addition to providing delivery service to its own customers, the Defendant also works as a subcontractor to provide delivery services to customers of PACKLINK Shipping S.L (“Packlink”) who are a company registered in, Spain with the number CIF B83357863 whose registered address is Calle Amaltea, 9 28045 Madrid pursuant to a pre-existing commercial agreement to carry out delivery services.

 

5. Packlink provides delivery services to users of the online auction site/retail site ‘eBay.co.uk’. eBay.co.uk users can opt to use the Defendant’s delivery services via Packlink. This means that the Defendant does not have any contractual relationship with Packlink ‘s customers. They, as is the case with the Claimant, contract solely with Packlink.

 

6. As there is no contract between the Claimant and the Defendant, the Defendant only has limited (tracking) information about the parcel.

 

7. The tracking information shows that on or around 13 June 2020, the Claimant’s parcel entered the Defendant’s delivery network after the parcel was collected by a self-employed courier collected the Parcel from the Claimant on behalf of the Defendant.

 

8. The last tracking point for the Parcel was on 17 June 2020 at one of the Defendants depots. There are no further tracking points after this date and therefore the Defendant accepts that the Parcel is lost.

 

The Claim Value

14. The Claimant seeks to recover £1,315.48.

 

15. The Claimant is put to strict proof as to the value of the claim.

 

 

The Defence

16. The Defendant denies that it is liable to pay the Claimant the damages claimed for breach of contract and/or negligence.

 

17. This Defence is a response to the Particulars of Claim which are set out in the ‘Particulars of Claim’ on page 2 of the claim form.

 

Claim Form –

Particulars of Claim

18. The first sentence of the Particulars of Claim is denied as the Claimant entered into a Contract with Packlink.

 

19. The second sentence of the Particulars of Claim is admitted.

 

20. The third to fourth sentences of the Particulars of Claim are neither admitted nor denied and the Claimant is put to strict proof.

 

No contractual relationship

21. There is no contract between the Claimant and the Defendant.

 

22. The Claimant entered into a contract with Packlink.

 

23. This was made very clear during the order process.

 

24. The Claimant should desists with this claim and contact Packlink. Claim for compensation

 

25. The Claimant claims £1315.48.

 

26. As explained above, it is denied that the Defendant owes the Claimant £1315.48

 

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I have structured the defence so that it can be read properly. You could have done this and it would be helpful if you had done.

I notice that there seems to be some paragraphs missing

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Okay, well we will have to wait until the case moves along and you will receive the allocation questionnaire at which point you will have to decide if you want to proceed to a hearing. There will be a fee.

It's likely that any hearing will be telephone or video. It will depend heavily upon the papers you produce in support of your case.

Your case will have to rely on the contract – on the basis that you are seeking the benefit of the Contracts (Rights of Third Parties) Act 1999 – and alternatively in negligence.

You will have to pay out the negligence aspect because the Spanish domicile of Packlink may be raised in issue.

The negligence argument will be on the basis that they took custody of your parcel. They undertook to carry out a certain service. They knew full well the value of the item. They understood full well that you and the intended recipient of the item were the beneficiaries of the arrangement and as such it would be recently foreseeable that both of you would be affected if they failed to carry out their duty of care to a proper standard.
Hermes are a large company with systems in place in which hold out an expertise in parcel delivery and you are entitled to rely on their expertise.
In breach of their duty of care towards you they lost the parcel and as a result he suffered the kind of direct damage which would be recently foreseeable: – the loss of the parcel and the loss of its value.

We work it out later on. At some point you will have to provide a skeleton argument and we will help you produce that.

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Thanks, In the meantine will be  accepting the offer of free mediation. Will be referring to your post below:

 

Quote

 

 

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Not my post.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Just to update on this, I went through mediation this morning and Hermes responded with the usual template response that Packlink were responsible. I mentioned the right of third parties act and consumer protection act and that Hermes failed to do their job with due diligence and care. They then threw in that there is a limit the value of goods should have and then my item was on the "excluded items" list. This came out of nowhere. I argued that no such thing was declared and if that was case Hermes should have declined to deliver since they knew the value of the item and what it was. They offered £300. I declined that and said I would settle for £1100 which they were happy to do. So did lose a small amount but had to weigh this against cost versus time, so overall I'm happy.

 

Thanks for your help. I will  be sure to donate, as this forum has been of great value.

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Thank you for letting us know. I'm sorry you had to compromise on anything – but I suppose it brings it to an end and gives you certainty. Our your costs on top or does this include your costs?

Hermes are totally dishonest and disreputable

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And by the way – (this is really for the benefit of others who read this), Hermes arguments relating to prohibited items and also to value limit are irrelevant to an item being lost.
You are quite right to say that they could have declined the job – but they didn't. But anyway, the fact that an item is on a prohibited items list can only be relevant to the possibility of some damage and it is impossible that an item which is fragile or flammable or something could in any way affect the risk of it getting lost.

Those would have been the arguments to raise.

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