image showing a delivery driver at a door delivering a parcel to support what to do when a delivery goes wrong

When Delivery Goes Wrong

When a delivery goes wrong, it is hard to know what action to take. We are all used to ordering items for delivery these days and most of the time it is a very convenient and easy way to order things we need.

by Claire Kendall

Sometimes consumers complain that a delivery company has apparently left a parcel on the doorstep. Alternatively, the driver could have delivered to a neighbour. Then, it disappears. When you call to report the matter the company may send you a photograph of the parcel on your doorstep. They use this as proof that they have delivered the item. The company rarely wants to do anything else to help.

It’s All in the Proof

The photo of the item outside your house is just that. It is not proof that you took delivery of the item.

If the seller refuses to help you, they have the burden of proving that the ‘risk in the goods‘ has passed to you. The risk in the goods is referring to your responsibility for the items. The law says that the seller of the goods remains responsible for them until the goods come into your physical possession. Basically this means the goods are in your hands.

If you want a neighbour to take in your delivery, then you can specify this to the seller. However, the goods remain the responsibility of the trader until they are in the hands of your neighbour.

Risk of Theft

Leaving goods outside your house means that the seller takes on the risk that the goods might be stolen. If this happens, then the trader should take the necessary steps to refund you or resend the goods if necessary.

What to do When Your Delivery Goes Wrong

If you are having any issues with this issue and need some assistance by calling:

The Consumer helpline 0808 223 1133.

Website: Citizen’s Advice Consumer Issues