To ask for reimbursement or not.

Curious to get peoples thoughts on what they would do about a situation.

Gets a little convoluted but here goes - I live in a high rise building with a manned reception desk, and a deactivated door intercom system. (A visitor can’t press a buzzer to an individual flat) so any parcels to be picked up by a courier have to be left with reception. I organised a collection for a parcel with a birthday gift worth £100 to go back to Australia (I’m in the U.K.). Through a cascade of issues/errors I thought the package was on the way and done. Find out six weeks later that it was never collected by the courier.

Talk to our reception staff, no sign of the parcel. Eventually discover one of the staff had cleaned out the storage area a week ago, taking uncollected incoming parcels, lost property, etc and dumped it in a charity donation bin. Presumably including my parcel. The bloke admitted to it and admitted fault for doing so, (albeit he didn’t specifically recall my parcel) but asked for it to remain between us, ie not to involve management and committed to reimbursing me if he was unable to recover the parcel from the charity.

So, my dilemma, on two points

  1. I’m not sure what this guys instructions were in cleaning out the room, and whether the charity dump was laziness on his part, hence why he doesn’t want to involve management, and he may be on a last warning or something. I wouldn’t like to be responsible for someone getting fired, even if he’s at that point due to his own fault.
  2. It is I imagine a minimum wage job, so £100 is probably quite a hit for him, whereas for me it’s not entirely inconsequential, but it’s not a major imposition either. So while the principle of the thing matters I would feel bad insisting on reimbursement if I think it would mean a major impact on his financial position.

Would you complain to management?
Would you insist on reimbursement? (If the parcel is not recovered)

Were any of the cascade of issues/errors your fault? If so, my answer to both questions is no.

I want to say no, but in the interests of full disclosure I did make an assumption. The courier company didn’t contact me to say they had failed to collect, and arrange a new pick up day, plus they sent an email to the parcel receipent to advise a parcel was on the way. (Which the receipent forwarded to me to check it was my parcel coming) I assumed on the strength of that email and no contact from the courier that everything was fine.

Go back to the fellow who asked you NOT to press it, and tell him you’re still upset and if he doesn’t want you to press it what does he suggest?
Ask him how happy he would be to be out the 100?

See what he says, perhaps he’ll offer you some compensation toward your loss, even if it’s not full restitution.

He won’t have gotten fired or in trouble due to you speaking up, and even if all he offers is deeper regret and numerous apologies, promise to do better, etc, you might feel a little better about just letting it be.

Just a suggestion, of course.

It’s a reasonable assumption that if you leave a parcel with reception to be picked up by a courier, then that transaction should actually happen. You shouldn’t need to follow up with reception or the courier to make sure the package went out, but it wouldn’t have hurt.

If you have proof that the package never got as far as the courier, then I would talk with management and try to find out why that didn’t happen. I wouldn’t blame the guy who cleaned out the storage room – he was just doing his job and I don’t think he should be held responsible. I’d say management should be held responsible if this is their policy for outgoing parcels.

I find it interesting that the two points on which your dilemma hangs are issues which you admittedly do not know whether they apply or not. That is, you are creating a problem for yourself.

In addition, neither of these issues should affect whether or not you deserve to be reimbursed. I seems to me that your reimbursement should be based on whether or not your package was disposed of through negligence or malicious actions of the people who you entrusted it to.

I think you are entitled to reimbursement… but whether to seek that through the guy or through the management is a tough one. But from what you’ve provided, seems like clear negligence on the part of the front desk to be the reason why you and your friends are out the money, and the recipient out of a gift.

I would go to management, for the reasons Shoeless suggested. It’s not entirely this guys fault. Reception should be able to get the package to the courier if you leave it with them.

They sent an email saying the parcel was on the way, /now/ they are claiming that their guy never collected it.

I’ve got no reason to believe the parcel was still in the storage room, and no reason to expect it to be still there after that length of time.

Your building should be naming and dating everything that comes into the storage room, like a shared refrigerator. And throwing stuff out after a few weeks or a few months. If you /knew/ the parcel was there, and it was only a couple of weeks, there would be grounds for complaint. As it is, I cant tell if your guy is stupid and lazy, or actually totally innocent. So /this time/ I have to give him the benefit of the doubt.

IDK, I think the guy probably took the stuff home. Either to keep or sell. Nobody throws out or gives away good stuff. You wait, he’ll show up with the opened parcel or just the item, slightly used.


A minimum wage schmuck who wants to give away $100 to cover what isn’t clearly his mistake? Something is rotten in Denmark.:smiley:

People do give away good stuff. Even moreso if it’s their company’s policy that they should.

If accepting outgoing packages and passing them on to a courier is part of the receptionist listed duties, then, yes, GreedySmurf is due compensation. If the package was left unattended with the expectation that the courier would see it and take it, not so much.

Yep. If handling packages, incoming and outgoing, is part of the duty of the reception folks, then you are paying for it, and not getting the service.

Your first post even admits that “uncollected incoming parcels” were dropped off at the charity bin. That means that your outgoing parcel isn’t the only item that isn’t being handled properly. I’d make a fuss, because who knows how many other people have lost things, either incoming or outgoing, because of this? It sounds like the building needs a better system.

No, and no.
I would decide it was on me to not have taken the parcel directly to the shipping outfit (post office, UPS, or FedEx vendor). I don’t trust anyone to not steal/lose something I’ve entrusted to them without some manner of receipt.