Is it possible to sue FedEx for a botched delivery?

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Is it possible to sue FedEx for a botched delivery?

I was shipping some expensive merchandise to a buyer. I requested signature confirmation (have proof of this) for insurance purposes on my end. Not only did FedEx not obtain a signature, they left the package at the front door without confirming the package made it to the correct person. Additionally, their online tracking software had a “glitch” in it, that showed the package was successfully delivered, but to the wrong state. They claim it got to the proper destination, but can’t prove it. The package was stolen, and a charge-back was filed to the buyer’s credit card. In order to get my insurance money, I needed signature confirmation and proof of delivery. What should I do?

Asked on January 14, 2013 under Business Law, New Jersey

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You could sue FedEx for breach of contract and negligence.  These are separate causes of action (claims) in your lawsuit.  The breach of contract cause of action would be based on not obtaining the signature guarantee and not confirming the package made it to the correct person.

Negligence is the failure to exercise due care (that degree of care that a reasonable delivery service would have exercised under the same or similar circumstances to prevent foreseeable harm).  You will need to prove duty (of due care) mentioned here, breach of duty (failure to exercise due care), actual cause, proximate cause, and damages.

Actual cause means but for FedEx would the package have been stolen?  If the answer is no, actual cause has been established.  Proximate cause means are there any unforeseeable, intervening acts which would relieve FedEx of liability?  If the answer is no, proximate cause has been established.  Damages means the amount of monetary compensation you are seeking in your lawsuit.

Your damages would be for the loss of the package.


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