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Hermes possibly, stolen my ring


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In September ,my son and his then fiancé stayed in a holiday park, when they got home she realised she had left her ring at location. she contacted them, they said they had it and would send it on, it was sent via Hermes.

 

Hermes stated, they received the package, then said it was ready for delivery. in the interim my son and fiancé split and my son tried to resolve this, Hermes then said the packaging was damaged so they destroyed the item for safety reasons! a white gold 5 diamond bridge ring, I was informed of all this in December and have been battling since to establish how they can destroy diamonds, the packaging was damaged but not the item.

 

I wrote to CEO in December, he failed to reply. Constant emails get me nowhere, I know they have stolen it, but they cannot destroy an item without authority

The ring belonged to my late mother and is an heirloom and the only tangible item I had left of hers approx value £650 3 years ago, thus has caused me a lot of upset to think I will never see it again.

 

They have offered me £23.62 compensation.

Their incident ref is....

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What is the value of the Ring? How much was declared as the value when it was sent through Hermes?

 

Have Hermes actually told you in writing that it was  damaged and then destroyed?

Please could you post their message up on the forum.

Also, it's very important that you read around this subforum, the other Hermes stories. There are many of them and it will give you a very good idea of how we go about things and what happens.

Please will you monitor this thread for a fuller reply tomorrow

 

 

 

 

 

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I cannot say how much the declared value was when sent via Hermes,because it was my son's ex fiance who originally made arrangements for it to be sent on,Hermes claim it was insured for £20

I haven't no way of knowing where this amount cane from especially as they say the item was destroyed

It was verbally valued approx 3 years ago at approx £650

Copy of Hermes reply attached

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Thank you. This is going to be fairly complicated as there is a lot of explanation to give and also some questions to ask. I hope that you will bear with it.

I understand that the ring is an heirloom. You had it valued about three years ago – but only verbally and then the value was given at about £650.

Do you have any photographs of the ring? Would you be able to get any written confirmation of the valuation which has made three years ago? Who valued it?

I understand also that the fiancé is no longer a fiancé. Is there still a line of communication with the fiancé or is that no longer possible? It would be handy to know what the fiancé said about the declaration of value and also how the item was described when it was sent off.
It also occurs to me that although you say that the fiancé made the arrangements, was it the fiancé who actually arranged the label et cetera or was it the holiday park which did it? If it  was the holiday park then I expect that they would have useful records of declaration of value and also description of item.
It would also be helpful to have some description of the package – even a photograph.

Obviously this heirloom is extremely important to you. I understand that it belonged to your mother who died three years ago and you gave it to your son's fiancée and clearly there was a hope that it would continue to be an important item through the married life of your son and your continuing family.
I'm sorry to say that your chances of getting it back are negligible and although it will never really compensate, I suspect that the only thing we we able to help you achieve will be a level of compensation.

You suggested that it has been stolen. I completely agree. I don't think it's possible to say that it was stolen by Hermes – but I'm quite sure that some courier somewhere has stolen it and that it is either being worn by somebody that they know or else it has been put up for sale somewhere. Of course the tragedy of it is that although they will enjoy the monetary value of it – they will never be able to appreciate the enhanced sentimental value which it has to you and your family.
I'm afraid that when this kind of thing happens, the people who commit the thefts have no sense of the personal and emotional damage that they are causing.

This is going to be slightly complicated to deal with – but we can help you – but it will take some effort. I understand that you have been dealing with this for several months already and you have got nowhere. We will advance you very quickly on this but you will have to spend time reading and understanding the principles involved.
I think you will have to decide whether you are prepared to do this even though you won't recover the ring – you may find it satisfying to have a crack at Hermes and you will certainly find it a very interesting experience.
I have no doubt that you will have to issue legal proceedings. I don't know if you have sued anybody in the courts before – but using the small claims process which exists in this country, it is pretty straightforward and also it is risk-free to the extent that even if you lose, you will not have to pay the costs of the other side. Your only risk factor will be the cost of the proceedings – which may be around £200 or so.

I think that before going on to further explanations, it would be helpful to know what your comments are so far on what I have written and also whether you are able to address any the questions I have put here.

However, to keep you going – I will refer you to this thread which involves broadly the same principles as those which will underpin your own claim.

 

 

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Just a recap for my own thoughts. 

 

Son and Fiancée left a valuable ring at a Holiday park - no doubt in error. 

The now ex Fiancée arranged with the Holiday Park for the ring to be returned.

Holiday Park used Hermes Courier company to do this.  

 

You need to establish with the Holiday Park

 

Do they have receipts for the despatch

How the item was packaged for despatch - although we should not assume - it is unbelievable that a valuable ring was simply shoved into a jiffy bag ! 

Who valued the ring for the despatch ?  One assumes the Fiancée explained it was valuable and one would assume that even the Admin staff at the Holiday Park would not simply assume an engagement ring to be valued at £20.00 (although IMHO you should not have to pay extra insurance to the courier company for doing their job !) 

 

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Photo of an extremely similar ring attached,could almost be it.

It was changed to white gold as ex fiance had an allergy to gold.

I would have to chase my son for the jeweller who gave verbal quote,but not sure if he is still in business.

 

Each family is not allowed to contact each other due to an harrassment order on the girl,she would not be willing to cooperate anyway.

I have written to the park to get some answers as emails to them were unanswered,am awaiting their replies.

 

My mother died in 1991 and I kept the ring safe until my family wanted to use it or to pass on in life. I then gave it to my son for his fiance as he had a desire to use it.i didn't expect anyone to be negligent.

 

I have used small claims court before and fully understand how they work,but have only used for monies owed.

If I need to go down that line I will do so,but would like to cross all lines of enquiry first.

 

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Okay – we hear what you say about trying all other possible solutions before going to court. You're absolutely right of course. Court action should be a last resort.

However, you can be certain that there will be no other resort here. But you should continue with whatever procedures and processes you think might move you forward and we are ready to help you whenever you want.

In order to make a claim from Hermes – or any other courier company, you should normally need to know the value which was declared. You always have to declare a value with these people – which is fair enough. However, your claim would normally be limited to the declared value.

So if the ex-fiancé – in order to cut a corner had said that it was value £50 – then that would be the maximum you could claim. If you read around this sub- forum at some of the other stories, you will see that this point has come up before. When you agree to buy a service from somebody, each party assesses the risks and their expectations of the contract. If your fiancé told them that the ring was worth £50, then that would be the extent of Hermes liability – because as far as they were concerned, they were undertaking the risk of £50.

The problem here is we don't know what the declared value is – and it seems unlikely that we will be able to find out.

Who was the addressee? Who was the parcel addressed to? Was it you?

Despite the contractual difficulties, there is still a clear way forward, in my view.

You will see above that I referred you to a thread where we relied on the tort of conversion as part of the basis for our action. In fact the claimant won the case – but unfortunately it was not because it was defended by Hermes and they lost. It was simply that they had failed to respond to the claim and the judgement was given in default. Useful – but doesn't establish any rules for the future.

Hopefully you will be reading some of the stories on this sub- forum and you will see that this question of Hermes unilaterally undertaking the destruction of damage property has come up several times.

For some reason rather Hermes feel that they can legitimately destroy property belonging to others – even when they know who that property belongs to because they have the labels.

Even though the damage may have occurred accidentally – and may even be because of the fragility of the item in the parcel, the deliberate destruction of the item by Hermes is another matter.
They have no right to do this. And frankly I would consider that almost every time it is simply a cover for having lost the item – possibly because as been stolen. In fact the most likely scenario in my view is that somebody steals the item, logs it as damaged – and then it goes into their destruction process.

The act of destroying somebody else's property without authority is called – Conversion. It is effectively about converting your ownership of your property into their ownership. I don't know if you want the legal technicalities but by and large, the ultimate test of ownership is whether you have a right to destroy the property in question.

The only person who had the right to destroy the engagement ring was you. If in fact the engagement ring really was destroyed – then Hermes exceeded all authority.

Whether it was actually damaged and destroyed – or this was simply used as a cover for the theft of the item, is neither here nor there. Hermes have said that the item was damaged and destroyed – and I can't see them suddenly coming back to you and saying that they apologise and that they have suddenly found it. However, it could happen – and pigs might fly.

Because they have committed the tort of conversion, it seems to me that you have an excellent claim against them not only for the value of your engagement ring, but also to recover its sentimental value.

One thing that concerns me though is that you say that the ring itself was changed so that it is no longer the ring that carries the memories of your mother. In other words to a certain extent it has ceased to be an heirloom.

Please could you explain what has happened to it.

On the basis of legal action. It's very helpful that you have already some experience of bringing a legal action. You say that you have only brought it for money which was owed to you. That's fine. It will be hugely helpful if you decide to sue Hermes.
You would still be suing  on the small claims track but of course instead of suing up for a debt, you would be suing for the tort of conversion. We will help you all the way.

Please let us know about the ring and the change that you have referred to.

Once again, please make sure that you have read quite a few of the stories on this sub- forum. In particular read the stories about damaged and then destroyed goods. Also read up about Hermes requirement that their customers should insure themselves against Hermes own negligence or the criminality of their employees.

Also, even though you have taken small claim before, it will be worth brushing up and you can read on this forum about the steps involved taking a small claim in the County Court.

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