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Advice needed: Have you ever had to make a damaged shipment claim?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Eminor3rd, Feb 4, 2016.

  1. Eminor3rd

    Eminor3rd BLAAAAARRGGHH!!

    Feb 10, 2008
    I bought a bass from a TB'er. When the bass arrived, there was a sizable crack in the pickguard. The pickguard was an aftermarket, wooden piece valued at $150. I contacted the seller who confirmed that the damage did not exist before shipping and who had fortunately purchased insured shipping through UPS. The seller made the insurance claim, and told me that UPS may contact me about inspecting the item.

    Today, a UPS guy showed up at my workplace (where I had the bass shipped) asking to pick up a damaged item. I explained that the item was at home, because I didn't know about the pickup,. He said no problem, he could come back tomorrow. I asked him about the process, and he said he didn't know much, just that he was to pick it up and drop it off to the claims department.

    So I have questions:

    1. Should I give them the whole bass, or just the pickguard?
    2. If the whole bass, should I box it up first?
    3. How long should I expect to wait for a resolution?
    4. What are the chances that the claim is accepted?

    I'm kind of worried about sending the bass because I'm afraid to risk further damage from the additional handling. I'm aware that may be an irrational worry.

    Anyone with experience? Any info would be a big help. Thanks!

    EDIT: The document that the UPS guy was holding said: "CUSTOM WALNUT PICKGUARD"
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2016
  2. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Retired Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Looks like it's just the pickguard. You'll need to work with the seller to see how he's going to make it right for you, because he'll get the money for the claim.

    Here's my story. I sold a Glockenklang Quattro to a TBer in Nashville. Somewhere along the way, Fedex dropped it hard, causing two of the driver magnets to separate from their cones. I paid to have the cab shipped back to me, and I filed a claim with Fedex. They came out and picked up the cab to inspect the damage, asked me a lot of questions, then paid my insurance claim and one-way of shipping. I was fine with that. The process took about a month, which was a bit longer than they say claims take. Ultimately Fedex did right by me.
    Eminor3rd likes this.
  3. 5544


    Dec 1, 2015
    I am going to look at this through the eyes of UPS.

    Was the item documented during the packing process?
    Was the item packed properly before shipping?
    Was the item inspected for damage before accepting the package?

    Now here comes the bad part:

    The driver arrives to place where package was delivered only to find out it was not on the property. One can easily argue that the item was damaged in transit after it was delivered and UPS is not liable.
    Eminor3rd likes this.
  4. Eminor3rd

    Eminor3rd BLAAAAARRGGHH!!

    Feb 10, 2008
    Thanks for the responses, guys! Your experiences are super helpful. I'm trying to look at it from the "cons" angle, too.

    It's getting dramatic, here's the story so far:

    I got a couple PMs after posting this (and one from Reddit), and everyone warned me that I need to remember that the claim is through the shipper, so as soon as I let go of the package, I don't have any direct control over the process. Given the tight timeline, I wanted to be prepared for anything, so I went ahead and reboxed the bass and brought it to work with me. But I called UPS as soon as I got to work, explained my situation, and manages to get them to agree to do a "photo inspection," whereby they'd send me an exhaustive list oh pictures I needed to take and submit to them. I was very happy with this option, and I thought all was well.

    A few hours later, I returned to my desk from my lunch break only to be informed that a UPS guy came and took my bass from the corner of my office while I was gone. I had no idea they would do that without me signing for it, and I assumed (whoops) that once they changesd the status of the tracking number in the system, it would trickle down. But I guess it must have been the same guy from yesterday who thought he was being helpful. So I called UPS back, and explained the situation, asking that they return the bass. I was told they were on it and to expect a call within an hour to schedule a return.

    It's been about an hour and a half, and I haven't received a call yet. Wish me luck :(
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2016
  5. Eminor3rd

    Eminor3rd BLAAAAARRGGHH!!

    Feb 10, 2008
    Never got a call back. Called to follow up. Was told that I was out of luck -- not only was it not coming back today, it wasn't coming back at all. I got a little angry, flipped out a little bit. A couple periods of being on hold -- and I'm told the driver has been "convinced" to drop it back off, but it may take until 7:00PM

    So now I have to sit in my office until 7:00PM and hope this guy shows up.

    I hate the mail. I hate it.
  6. Clark Dark

    Clark Dark

    Mar 3, 2005
    I hope everything turns out okay for you. Here's where I'd like to advance some advice. I've seen so many YouTube vids of people receiving guitars and basses from Alibaba, Aliexpress, Everbuying, DHGate, et al because they want to document everything from opening the box to plugging in and playing. I suspect to alleviate any future kickback from sellers and shippers alike. Not a bad idea actually.
    farshore, sissy kathy and Eminor3rd like this.
  7. Eminor3rd

    Eminor3rd BLAAAAARRGGHH!!

    Feb 10, 2008
    Not a bad idea at all. Definitely going to do that in the future.

    Just got the bass from the UPS guy. Thankfully didn't have to wait all the way to 7. Back to square one!

    I'll have a photo shoot this weekend. I'll keep chronicling it in this thread just in case it's useful to anyone in the future. Thanks again for your advice, guys.
    sissy kathy likes this.
  8. Aberdumbie


    Jan 22, 2016
    South Carolina
    I ship custom construction materials for a living. The shipper (where you made the purchase) chose the carrier. They likely ship via that carrier frequently which gives them clout with that carrier. Any seller with any integrity would do the right thing and horror your purchase thru to delivery. You would be fortunate to get a return call from UPS. That should be the shippers worry not yours. Take a more pro active stand with the folks you made the purchase with. They deal with damage routinely and should be open and willing to assist in your problem. Good luck
    Eminor3rd likes this.

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