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View Full Version : UPS is holding my package hostage


Hack&Lube
01-24-2006, 06:53 AM
A few weeks ago, I posted about how I had some computer parts shipped to me from the US but the seller sent it via UPS by accident.

This was in the beginning of January. UPS has basically now held onto my package for a month and now I get a postcard in the mail telling me that they will return the package to sender or it will be abandoned immediately unless I called them.

I call UPS and they tell me that they are holding my package because the original shipper wrote $5 value on it. The rep basically interrogates me to find out where I purchased it and how much I paid for it (isn't there a privacy law against this?). I have no issue with paying the neccessary duties and taxes that the government charges so I told her that I paid $190 for it via money order and she demands that I scan it and e-mail it to her. On top of that, if I do send them the proof of value, they will charge me even more brokerage fees for processing the package, she estimated $50-$100.

Otherwise, they will return it to the sender and then charge him the return freight and the brokerage fees! If neither of us pays, they'll abandon and destroy it!

What is this??? UPS is holding my computer for ransom. Are they legally allowed to do this? Either I pay fees exhorbitant fees that are about 50% of what the value of the package is to UPS...or the guy who sent it has to pay for the return trip and fees on top of that just to get it back (+initial shipping cost)?

After careful reading, I tried calling UPS out on the guarantee on their website that should a package be delayed, that the reciever is exempt from brokerage fees, as the package is nearly 3 weeks late. The rep gave me an excuse like: "well you didn't have a phone number written on the package, therefore we can't honor that since we couldn't call you immediately" and "Canada Customs caused the delay, it's not us".

My experience with Canada Customs is that if a package's written value doesn't match the contents, they'll send it anyway unless they can prove it via an invoice inside the package or something. Is UPS extorting me? They are basically holding my package for ransom and either way, either me or the sender will have to pay big time to get our package back.

Excluding the regular duties and GST which I will have no issue paying, it's either I pay for UPS's private brokerage + extra processing ($50-$100). Or the original sender pays for return freight ($30 + $50-$100) maybe even the brokerage fees themselves), or they won't sign the package back over to either of us and will abandon it. Do I have any recourse in this situation besides one of us paying the ransom?

ken0042
01-24-2006, 08:42 AM
One question, did you ask your seller to use a "friendly" customs tag?

I ask, because it affects your culpability in the matter.

IMHO- the problem came about when a ridiculous value was placed on the package.

Bill Bumface
01-24-2006, 10:17 AM
UPS are a bunch of asshats. Tell them you will clear customs yourself (which you are allowed to do).

Hack&Lube
01-24-2006, 04:14 PM
One question, did you ask your seller to use a "friendly" customs tag?

I ask, because it affects your culpability in the matter.

IMHO- the problem came about when a ridiculous value was placed on the package.

No, I never asked the sender to do anything. He shipped it with a $5 value and sent it via UPS because he has no experience shipping outside of the states before and he had already sent it before I could contact him. He thought he was doing me a favour by shipping it quickly and he even paid for the shipping himself.

Displaced Flames fan
01-24-2006, 04:21 PM
I don't understand how UPS is still in business to be honest with you. FedEx destroys them on overnight service. The USPS destroys them on non-express shipping prices and on time deliveries.

I like USPS because it works hand in hand with Canada Post, it's really a seamless transition between the two countries.

ken0042
01-24-2006, 05:30 PM
Tell them you will clear customs yourself (which you are allowed to do).

If you can do that, then that's what I would do.

Hack&Lube
01-24-2006, 06:07 PM
If you can do that, then that's what I would do.

I told that to the rep but she said, it's too late. They've already gone through the process and it was my fault for not contacting them the day it was shipped. I didn't know it was shipped via UPS until several days later when the sender finally returned my correspondance where I had asked him to ship USPS. He thought he was doing me a favour by shipping as soon as he could by courier but in the end, he's caused me unimaginable delays and headaches. They also say they are no liable for any fees because the sender didn't put my phone number on the package so they could not contact me directly when the package was held.

jonesy
01-24-2006, 06:29 PM
thats gotta hurt.

Flames_Gimp
01-24-2006, 07:03 PM
dude, the seller fudged up, so they should send him back the package plus the bill.... i mean if your going to sell stuff and ship across the border, the seller should be responsible.

photon
01-24-2006, 07:12 PM
I agree, as bad as it is if I were the seller I would take responsibility for it and eat the cost to make it right.

snappyk
01-24-2006, 07:14 PM
I got in trouble at a UPS store today because I didn't tape a box shut and buddy behind the counter was mad that I asked him to tape it shut for me, he was "busy". Whatever happened to the good ol days of customer service?

Neeper
01-25-2006, 12:57 AM
Screw UPS, I hate them. They always do a rape job on international shipments. How can they tell you that Canada Customs caused the delay. That is impossible seeing how they are the ones that clear it!! They have agents that clear these packages FOR Canada Customs.

That's really ****ty luck. I don't know what else you can do? Sounds like the seller did fudge up by putting a fake value on it.

Clarkey
01-25-2006, 01:33 AM
Was 'holding my package' too easy for Fotze to even bother with.

Reggie Dunlop
01-25-2006, 01:53 AM
You're scaring me. I've got a few very expensive guitars coming to me via UPS.

Hack&Lube
01-25-2006, 09:21 AM
You're scaring me. I've got a few very expensive guitars coming to me via UPS.

Are they coming from the U.S.? I purchased a guitar from Texas for $300 before Christmas and it arrived in 14 days via Canada Post with no duties, no taxes, nothing at all.

The post office guy just gave it to me and I was estatic.

Hack&Lube
01-25-2006, 02:43 PM
Okay, I have a different rep on the phone and this one is telling me I can't clear it myself because it has to clear in the port it arrives in, therefore I have to be in Winnipeg?

This doesn't seem to jive with what you guys told me earlier about clearing it in NE Calgary.

BlackArcher101
01-25-2006, 07:30 PM
I'm not sure how you get it to Calgary, as packages go through customs in Winnipeg for us albertans.

I think though, is that as soon as the package ships, you have to call UPS and let them know you want to do that BEFORE it get's there. Otherwise if it gets there, I think it's there until it clears or gets sent back.