An insurance claim (for $1300) I made, was denied for the following reason:
"Postal regulations (Domestic Mail Manual) state in part the mailer must pack to prevent deterioration or degradation of the contents mailed. Fragile items must be packaged to withstand normal mail processing and handling." / "Indemnity has been denied because items were packaged in such a manner that they could not have reached their destination undamaged in the normal course of the mail."
The following was my response/appeal (names and actual insurance numbers have been removed for obvious reasons): Having shipped innumerable packages that fall under the category of "fragile," I can assure you I know how to properly pack in order to protect an article. Further, I went far above and beyond with this particular piece. Following are the details of how the item was packed:
First, I wrapped the item [a liquid-filled record (lp) that was sold in a clear plastic sleeve] in (small bubble) bubble wrap; placed that within an lp mailer (which are made expressly for the purpose of mailing lps); sealed it with packing tape; wrapped that in (large bubble) bubble wrap; placed that entire package within a corrugated box measuring 17"x13"x13" that was packed with both kraft paper as well as (large bubble) bubble wrap, securing the bubble wrapped lp mailer securely in the middle, standing at approximately a 75 degree angle, being certain that it could not move side to side, thus insuring it couldn't shift toward any of the four sides (short of someone mistreating a package that was CLEARLY marked fragile by both me and the USPS, which also included "this way up" arrows).
As it happens, as further proof that I packed the item in more than a satisfactory manner, I shipped two (2) identical packages that day; identical in every way, including the contents and insured value! Fortunately, the other package arrived safely. As it happens, not only did one of your carriers destroy the package that was shipped to Mr. Gxxxxx, but the clerk who accepted and processed both packages from me the day I shipped them, somehow mixed up the insurance labels! If you would like some verification regarding the other package arriving safely, the insurance # is: VIXXXXXXXXUS. If you would like a testimony as to the quality packing job I did on the EXACT same item, I can contact Mr. Fxxxxxx (the gentleman who received the other, identical package) to see if he would oblige. I'm sure he would be more than happy to do so if necessary, as he has also received a great many packages of a similar variety from me.
Also, if a character reference would be to your liking, you can contact Mr. Sxxxx at the Sxxxxxxxxxx, Ohio Branch Post Office, as he was the customer service manager who was kind enough to help expedite my case when he discovered the mix up that his clerk had made with the insurance labels.
This entire process has been a disaster, and at every turn it has been made so by errors on the part of the USPS; neither the shippee nor I have held it up at all.
Please reconsider your decision, as I have a long history of shipping packages of this kind, and have always tried to utilize the USPS for my shipping needs, as you have always been the most trustworthy people to turn to for doing so. Please don't let me down.
The following was sent with my second appeal:
Afternoon, Ms. Finley. I'm contacting you today regarding a denied insurance claim appeal. I'm attaching the original appeal letter I wrote, as it explains in detail why the claim shouldn't been denied in the first place. I would like to add that the reason people purchase insurance in the first place is to cover themselves if the unfortunate is to occur. If insurance claims, that are clearly within the right if being paid are denied, why offer insurance in the first place? Rather misleading of the USPS, I think.
This entire fiasco has caused an incredible amount of undo stress and financial hardship: $1300 may not seem like a lot to some, but it most certainly is for my household.
I'm hopeful that you will take the time to thoroughly review this situation with more scrutiny, and reconsider the previous decision. As much as I would hate to do, I will seek legal counsel if necessary. Again, please see the attached letter explaining the details of the original situation, as well as why the claim should clearly be paid on.
This was the message I sent today 3-19-13, after waiting for, and never receiving correspondence from Ms. Finley:
I'm forwarding/re-sending my previous communication to you, so that you might reexamine and reconsider the USPS' position. Please review both the message below, and the attached letter that was sent for the appeal. I would also like to stress/reiterate, that when Mr. Gxxxxx returned the damaged package (including the all the packaging and contents) to the USPS location that delivered it to him, it was one of your employees who acknowledged the package was destroyed by the carrier, and kept the package and all its contents: your employee kept the package, and still has it to my knowledge. How does one justify a government employee accepting an item, acknowledging to have been damaged/destroyed in transit by their employee; denying a legitimate claim; and actually KEEPING said damaged property? This was a fully insured $1300 item we're talking about, not some $50 parcel that one can simply dismiss as a "whoops" situation. I packaged the item more than adequately; I paid for the insurance; and the USPS is now responsible to pay on the claim. Simple as that. This has gone on far too long.
I expect communication from you soon.
Unfortunately, the email bounced back, letting me know that she has either gotten wise and changed her email address, or no longer works for the USPS.
USPS insurance is a scam. There is no reason they shouldn't have paid.