In Holiday Guide

The package never made it onto your porch. Or it did but it's gone. Now what?

What to do when packages are lost or stolen

It's annoying and disappointing when a package doesn't arrive when it's supposed to, but it doesn't have to be costly.

First off, to determine if it was lost in travel or stolen after delivery ("porch pirates" are real!), track the package through the delivery service.

If the item was shipped through the post office and it was not delivered, the shipper will be directly refunded – as long as it was insured. However, if the package was stolen – which can be determined if the carrier scanned it right before delivery – then it's considered a crime that should be filed with the police. Go here to start a claim with the USPS.

If an item was sent domestically through UPS and did not show up, the recipient has to wait 24 hours before reporting a missing package. However, as soon as they do, UPS begins an investigation. UPS refunds pretty much all missing packages, whether stolen or lost, by issuing a refund to the seller. Go here to report a missing package with UPS.

If you order something FedEx, file a lost package claim online. It takes about five to seven business days to resolve a claim, but FedEx usually takes responsibility and issues a refund. As the sender or the recipient, you have 60 days to file a claim for damaged or missing items and up to nine months to file a lost item report. Start a claim with FedEx here.

Amazon Prime members receive very fast shipping, and if the package does not arrive, the company has a no-questions-asked policy and will provide a refund after 36 hours. If packages are late, Amazon will credit your account for the inconvenience. Go here to report a package missing from Amazon.


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