- Jun 1, 2021
- Reaction score
- McDowell county North Carolina
I think usps was stalling while they searched for the package. Also some usps employees will steal mail. Not sure it's possible in your case. My 2 cents wort.Last winter I noticed a .40 flintlock on the For Sale forum that really caught my eye. I'm getting old and have a bum shoulder so a .40 sounded like a good idea. I contacted the owner and we agreed on a trade, his .40 for my Centermark Fusil de Chasse. I packed up the FdC and used USPS Click-N-Ship to create a label for Priority Mail and insured it for $1,300.00. On Feb. 23rd I handed the package to a clerk at our local post office. It should arrive at its new home in the Adirondack Mountains of NY in about 4 days. My new rifle, shipped via UPS, arrived promptly and in great shape. USPS tracking indicated the FdC cleared the San Antonio, TX regional center. Then it disappeared. Days, and then weeks, went by without further scans showing up on tracking. I initiated an inquiry with USPS. No result. My new friend in NY was very understanding and patient. After the required amount of time had passed I filed an insurance claim for $1,300.00. Then things got interesting. The USPS denied the claim saying I failed to provide adequate "Proof of Value". I had provided a link to a French smoothbore for sale by Track of the Wolf. Not sufficient. I appealed and got a letter of appraisal from H. Dykes Reber at The Muzzleloader Shop, Ltd. in Arkansas. Again, the USPS denied the claim based on inadequate proof of value. Would the USPS continue to flatly deny the claim on a package they LOST? Or were they planning to settle for a lesser amount? Luckily, we didn't have to find out. On May 3rd, more than two months after I handed the package to the clerk in Texas, it arrived at the post office in Johnstown, NY. The FdC was undamaged.
To say this was a learning experience is an understatement. How does anyone establish irrefutable proof of value on a hand-made muzzleloader, especially in a straight trade transaction? Should we both have paid dealers to sell the other party our gun for us so we would each have had a receipt? According to the USPS, a sales receipt would have been proof of value. Or would they have found another excuse to deny the claim? Be very careful, my friends.