Today, I received an outcome from the USPS that I wasn't expecting. I was denied an international insurance claim.
So, here is my tale of caution when dealing with the USPS:
I bought a Jacques Fath dress for a photo shoot but it ended up not being exactly what I wanted but I knew with this particular label that if I didn't like it I would be able to sell it for what I put into it. It was a beautiful dress just not quite what I wanted when I tried it on. So, I listed it in ebay and I put no international bidders because I didn't want to deal with the hassle of insurance etc and when you are speaking about a valuable dress you normally don't want to take the risk. But, somehow a lady in Germany won the dress. I went through with the transaction as I figured the lady had won it and little did I know what awaited me.
So, I packaged the dress and off it went insured. A month later the lady received the dress (It was sent Priority Mail!!!). When she received it, she opened it in front of a customs inspector and the box was damaged from sitting in water and inside was the dress all moldy. Yes, my heart sank when I heard this. I had wrapped it pretty good but I didn't seal coat it! I guess I should have used a zip lock bag and really sealed it in but I didn't think about this kind of thing happening. It wasn't winter time.
The dress could not withstand sitting in a pool of water by the post office for what would have been at least three weeks. I think it got misplaced and was put in some cold, damp, wet spot for three weeks and the cardboard of the sealed box couldn't handle it all. But, of course, the USPS says it's my fault. I'm telling you all this tale so that you know it is just about impossible to get insurance money back from USPS. I have learned never to send anything valuable internationally through the USPS even with insurance. If you have to send something valuable, try another carrier. The customer service is not there with USPS. You can't talk to them directly. It's just bad all around. There is no one to complain too all you can do is accept what they say which sucks!
So, in my opinion, this is the fault of the post office as the box was sealed and I used their box!!!! I paid extra for insurance! But, I got my claim back and the post office says it is my fault. I give this as a tale of caution to those shipping with the USPS. In order to really benefit from their insurance claim, I do not know what you must do. So, now I am out the poor moldy dress and my money.
I'm letting this all go now as a valuable lesson about packaging and international insurance.