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Losses in shipping

At 03:48 PM 3/29/2000 -0500,  godbey at wizard_net said:
>Legalities aside, no reputable company is going to hold a 
>consumer responsible for an item that it fails to deliver to 
>the customer.

No company I know of in the "mail order" business delivers to its customers
(except for UPS and FedEx delivering supplies for which they don't charge).
 Almost all deliver to a carrier, and take NO RESPONSIBILITY for the
actions of the carrier.  They insist the customer take and pay for
insurance (often hidden in a "handling charge" and at exorbitant rates).
Then when there is a loss they leave the customer to enforce his rights
under the insurance, often with the seller's help.

I don't know what you mean by "hold a customer responsible" (blame???) but
almost no companies have an exposure to loss due to failure of the carrier
to perform.   The exposure is of the carrier because of the insurance
required by the seller.   

Because of the ubiquity of this custom and because customers may rely on
it, I will be insuring all future orders at customer expense.   I feel that
to do otherwise is to risk the customer misunderstanding who is at risk
during shipment.  I don't think this practice is fair to the customer, but
I do think it is expected by the customer.   So I will do it.
Dave Gomberg, San Francisco            mailto:gomberg at wcf_com
Jobe's Fern and Palm Spikes FREE        http://www.wcf.com/pam