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Filing a claim with USPS
March 14, 2014
8:39 am
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Troutdale, OR
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I recently purchased an 1894 18" trapper carbine at the below link. According to the USPS website, it was shipped on 3/5/14 from Arkansas. When it reached Memphis, TN it was then scanned "Return to sender/cannot be mailed as addressed" on 3/6/14. Per the seller, it was properly addressed to my FFL here in Oregon. As of today, 3/14/14, the package has still not been delivered back to the seller. I have been in constant contact with USPS and filed a case number for the "lost" package and am getting abolutely nowhere. The seller has been doing the same with no luck. It was sent registered mail and fully insured. Has anyone else had this problem? I was told by USPS that registered mail is very slow and I should not worry too much. In the meantime, I'm out nearly $5,000 with my rifle sitting somewhere in lala land. Should I not be worried??? Evidently, you have to wait 15 days before you can file a claim. How is USPS to deal with if you have to go this route? Any advice?

http://www.americanarmsandantiques.com/listings.php?id=800

March 14, 2014
10:01 am
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Wisconsin
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Registered mail can take 2 weeks to go half way across the country since it has to be signed for every time it changes hands. I would wait.

Bob

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March 14, 2014
11:40 am
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Troutdale, OR
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Thanks Bob. Maybe I'm jumping the gun on this then. It only made it 2 hours away before they decided it needed to go back to the sender for some unknown reason. Just seemed an awful long time, but since it has to be signed for every step of the way I can see how slow it could be. I feel like Ralphy waiting for that Red Ryder...

March 14, 2014
12:09 pm
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Kingston, WA
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Don,

Only the sender can file a claim. As far as the USPS is concerned, you do not exist. Until you physically sign for the item (actually your FFL), it belongs solely to the seller/shipper.

Bert

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March 14, 2014
12:33 pm
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Wisconsin
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It could be they figured out the address was correct and its on its way to you. Every time I have sent something with USPS it checks the address when its first entered and will kick back a address it does not like. With it being insured it also gets locked up every time its not in transit. I never was a fan of registered mail because of the delay. I would rather pay for next day shipping.

You already started a trace on it so there is not much more you can do. On the gun I had shipped to me, it was shipped Priority mail registered and after the normal 3 days priority normally takes I got nervous and the tracking is useless from the consumers end. It took 6 days to arrive. So you can figure to double the time it takes to ship a registered item.

If you did read the topic about shipping guns which is a sticky on the top of the Rifle forum, it has a lot of advise about shipping which you might find helpful.

http://forum.winchestercollector.org/viewtopic.php?t=2918

Bob

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March 14, 2014
2:06 pm
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Troutdale, OR
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Thanks guys. I appreciate the help. I'll let you know how it turns out.

March 14, 2014
9:02 pm
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If that seller is worth his salt. If the package was fully insured and it gets lost you should still get your money given back, especially if he makes a claim on the insurance.

Sincerely,
Maverick

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March 19, 2014
10:20 am
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Troutdale, OR
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Well, tomorrow is day 14 and the rifle still has not surfaced. I talked to the seller and he's filing the claim with USPS tomorrow (USPS requires you to wait 15 days until filing a claim). It's very peculiar that it was scanned when it was shipped on 3/5/14 in Maumelle, Arkansas and then was scanned 3/6/14 in Memphis, Tennesee as "return to sender." Memphis, TN is only 2 hours away from Maumelle, AR. There are no scans ever since. The seller and I are thinking it may have been stolen. The seller did send it fully insured via registered mail and said I'll be reimbursed for the full amount as soon as USPS pays on the claim (if the rifle is not located). Has anyone else been involved in a mess like this? If so, how eager was USPS to pay? How long should I expect to wait after the claim has been filed?

March 19, 2014
11:07 am
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Kingston, WA
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Don,

I have no personal experience with filing a loss claim with the USPS, so I can not say how long it will take for them to pay a claim. That stated, I very much suspect that they have a specified period of time (e.g. 90-days) in which they are allowed to continue trying to locate the item before they are required to pay the claim.

I also suspect that they will make a greater effort to find this item because it is a firearm that crossed stated lines (now in federal purview). It gets painful for them to report a stolen firearm.

Frankly, if I were in your shoes, I would request the seller to refund your money now. You never received the merchandise, and you are not the responsible party for its loss. It is solely between the seller and the USPS to resolve the issue. If the seller refuses to give you your money back in a reasonable amount of time (as deemed by you), I would pursue him via legal means. Again, the loss of the gun is solely his and the USPS problem... not yours. Your only involvement should be the return of your hard earned $$$$$, or the near term delivery of the merchandise.

Bert

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March 19, 2014
11:21 am
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Wisconsin
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Don,

Reading the link for the Shipping long guns I see one person went through that and it was 8 weeks for the claim to be processed. I agree with Bert that you should get your money back from the seller right away.

Bob

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March 19, 2014
3:40 pm
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Troutdale, OR
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Have a bit of encouraging news. Evidently, the seller spent half the day on the phone and at the post office today and finally got some new information. Evidently, it was just recently scanned in Los Angeles. I'm hoping that its truly on its way to my FFL here in Oregon. Maybe that "return to sender" scan was just a fluke in the system?? Talk about a nail biter...I'll definitely pay the extra money for next day delivery if I ever do this again. The USPS tracking is an absolute joke.

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