LM & First Class Post

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Bletchleyite

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If the TOC is responsible for lost tickets we can kiss free postage goodbye.

I think they legally may well be; a supplier is responsible for goods[1] until they are delivered. The courier is simply their subcontractor. They cannot be the customer's, as if they were the customer would be able to choose them, but the supplier chooses them.

This is why I will not post any eBay item I sell by any non-tracked method of postage, regardless of value.

[1] The only thing I can think of that would make this not the case is that the company is lending the customer an item of their property (a ticket) which evidences a services contract, but isn't quite goods.
 
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Llanigraham

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It is unfair because the customer has paid for a service which they do not receive due to the failure of the seller to deliver the ticket to the customer.

I'm not clear how that could be anything other than unfair.


I don't think it's professionally diligent to offer that type of delivery service if they aren't willing to replace lost tickets.

In terms of practical advice, it would be worth looking at the complaints process and working through it.
I think that you ought to be able to complain about this under the most recent consumer regulations,
so it might be worth inspecting the guidance to see if it fits.

The sellers responsibility ends when the item is handed to the Post office for delivery. No-one can be responsible for the PO service other than themselves.
 

bb21

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The sellers responsibility ends when the item is handed to the Post office for delivery. No-one can be responsible for the PO service other than themselves.

That is quite simply incorrect.
 

Llanigraham

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Shoddy, but not unexpected, treatment from London Midland. Failure to deliver is a breach of contract.

One option for financial recourse would be a claim for compensation from Royal Mail. I would however be asking London Midland for proof the tickets were issued and posted. Another option is, if you paid by Debit Card, a chargeback.

No it isn't!!

And you are even wrong about chargeback on a Debit Card. Now if you had said CREDIT card, that would have been different.
 

AngusH

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I think some of the puzzle here is that the customer can sort of choose, they have several delivery options, one of which is not tracked.

I don't think this affects liability due to loss, but I think LM believe that it does.

My view is that the unreliable[1] option shouldn't have been listed in the first place and that's where the failure lies.


[1] unreliable in that it is not advertised as being tracked or traceable.
 
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Bletchleyite

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No it isn't!!

And you are even wrong about chargeback on a Debit Card. Now if you had said CREDIT card, that would have been different.

You can do a chargeback on *any* type of payment card. You're confusing the situation with the additional protection you get on a credit card for purchases (over £100 I believe) where the card company is jointly and severally liable by law *even if it is not possible to charge back*.

FWIW Visa offer that additional protection voluntarily on their range of debit cards. But it is not relevant here as such.
 

bignosemac

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Tetchytyke

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The only thing I can think of that would make this not the case is that the company is lending the customer an item of their property (a ticket) which evidences a services contract, but isn't quite goods.

This is the crux of the matter.

The The Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional Charges) Regulations 2013 state:
43.—(1) A sales contract is to be treated as including the following provisions as terms.

(2) The goods remain at the trader’s risk until they come into the physical possession of—

(a)the consumer, or

(b)a person identified by the consumer to take possession of the goods.

(3) Paragraph (2) does not apply if the goods are delivered to a carrier who—

(a)is commissioned by the consumer to deliver the goods, and

(b)is not a carrier the trader named as an option for the consumer.

(4) In that case the goods are at the consumer’s risk on and after delivery to the carrier.

(5) Paragraph (4) does not affect any liability of the carrier to the consumer in respect of the goods.

But this is limited to goods, defined as:
“goods” means any tangible moveable items, but that includes water, gas and electricity if and only if they are put up for sale in a limited volume or a set quantity

A train ticket is a tangible moveable item. But the ticket is not what is purchased, what is purchased is the service that the ticket represents. A train journey is not a tangible moveable item. However one cannot access the train journey without having the tangible moveable item in their possession.

However, the OP should respond back to London Midland quoting these regulations and demand either a full refund or specific delivery. See what they come back with.

The sellers responsibility ends when the item is handed to the Post office for delivery. No-one can be responsible for the PO service other than themselves.

Wrong.
 
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Bletchleyite

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Is it?
If I Serve a Summons it is deemed Served when I post it, not when it is delivered to the recipient.

A Court Summons is a very specific thing with very specific laws affecting its delivery. It cannot be compared with the purchase of products or services, which are covered by another different set of laws.
 

bb21

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Is it?
If I Serve a Summons it is deemed Served when I post it, not when it is delivered to the recipient.

See this page from Citizens Advice.

I don't know how the legal system works, but your claim was incorrect in general.
 

Llanigraham

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I will agree about the Debit Card item, however all the other references provided are in relation to GOODS posted, and no-on has yet provided any legal evidence that rail tickets are goods and not a SERVICE.

Over to you!
 

bb21

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I will agree about the Debit Card item, however all the other references provided are in relation to GOODS posted, and no-on has yet provided any legal evidence that rail tickets are goods and not a SERVICE.

Over to you!

You made no qualification in your claim that you were only talking about rail tickets.
 

bignosemac

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Consumer legislation describes 'goods' as anything tangible that can be moved from one place to another. I've not found anything that specifically says that tickets are excluded from the latest legislation.

However, I'm not a lawyer and will defer should the contrary be true.
 

najaB

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Consumer legislation describes 'goods' as anything tangible that can be moved from one place to another.
Agreed. The issue is that you aren't paying for a ticket, you are paying for transportation. The ticket is a token that allows you access that service - it's not 100% clear if the token can be considered 'goods'.
 

exile

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Like most industries they will be customer friendly as long as it doesn't cost them too much.

They certainly should, if they want repeat custom. In this case the customer is not obliged to buy from LM.

The cost of replacing a ticket will be minimal.
 

exile

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The cost of replacing the ticket is, potentially, the full cost of the ticket if someone else uses it instead of buying their own.

Not if they wouldn't have travelled otherwise.
 

bb21

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They certainly should, if they want repeat custom. In this case the customer is not obliged to buy from LM.

The cost of replacing a ticket will be minimal.

The cost of replacing a ticket is most certainly not minimal.

Any reprinted ticket will be charged to the retailer at the full cost, unless there were an error in the printing process. This is not normally a problem if the ticket were for travel on the retailer's own company, which is why you will see TOCs more willing to sort something out in those situations.

Not saying that it is right they do not help the passenger out, but it is untrue that a replacement ticket costs very little.
 

exile

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The cost of replacing a ticket is most certainly not minimal.

Any reprinted ticket will be charged to the retailer at the full cost, unless there were an error in the printing process. This is not normally a problem if the ticket were for travel on the retailer's own company, which is why you will see TOCs more willing to sort something out in those situations.

Not saying that it is right they do not help the passenger out, but it is untrue that a replacement ticket costs very little.

The cost of printing a ticket will only be a few pence.
 

najaB

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The cost of printing a ticket will only be a few pence.
Nobody is disputing that the physical ticket will cost a few pence (at most) to produce. However, if the 'lost' ticket isn't actually lost then two passengers will have apparently valid tickets for the price of one.

Even if the ticket is genuinely lost, if TOC A has sold a ticket for travel on TOC B's service, they will have to buy another ticket from TOC B to give to their customer. They have bought two tickets from TOC B but only have been paid for one.
 

furlong

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If this sort of problem is still occurring, I think you should deal with it as a straightforward chargeback situation or breach of contract but also involve Trading Standards and the ORR. I think it's pretty unlikely that a rail ticket supplier is exploiting a genuine loophole in the law, but if they really have found one then let their lawyers explain how the loophole works to Trading Standards and the ORR so that they can work to get it closed off as soon as possible!
 

bb21

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The cost of printing a ticket will only be a few pence.

That is neither here nor there.

If LM lose a ticket priced at £50 in the post, and the system shows the ticket as having printed, reprinting the ticket will cost LM another £50.

The cost of printing matters not one jot.

I was only trying to explain the reasons behind the described behaviours by the TOC, not offering any excuses.
 

Llanigraham

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If this sort of problem is still occurring, I think you should deal with it as a straightforward chargeback situation or breach of contract but also involve Trading Standards and the ORR. I think it's pretty unlikely that a rail ticket supplier is exploiting a genuine loophole in the law, but if they really have found one then let their lawyers explain how the loophole works to Trading Standards and the ORR so that they can work to get it closed off as soon as possible!

On exactly what legal grounds?
 

Bletchleyite

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The cost of replacing a ticket is most certainly not minimal.

Any reprinted ticket will be charged to the retailer at the full cost, unless there were an error in the printing process. This is not normally a problem if the ticket were for travel on the retailer's own company, which is why you will see TOCs more willing to sort something out in those situations.

Not saying that it is right they do not help the passenger out, but it is untrue that a replacement ticket costs very little.

That adds another to the many reasons why the best approach is to buy from the main TOC on your journey and not Trainline etc.
 

furlong

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On exactly what legal grounds?

Fundamentally, by denying the passenger the service they have contracted for a reason entirely under the control of the company and its chosen agents.

If you are going to require one party to produce a specific piece of cardboard to exercise their rights under the contract, but fail to deliver that item to that party, you have surely failed to exercise the reasonable care and skill expected, and I struggle to see how any fair contractual term can override that obligation. (In effect, the company is, by the actions of its own agents, making it impossible for the other party to receive the service they paid for.)

As I said, if there really is some loophole here because of some confusion between goods and services (which I very much doubt), it needs bringing to the attention of the authorities who can act to close it.
 

bignosemac

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London Midland's 'no replacements, no refunds' should their delivery agent fail to deliver appears to be a case of caveat emptor.

Such a clause should no longer be permitted under consumer legislation regardless of the status of the 'product' offered for sale.
 

najaB

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As I said, if there really is some loophole here because of some confusion between goods and services (which I very much doubt), it needs bringing to the attention of the authorities who can act to close it.
No action needed by the authorities - LM can simply stop offering free First Class delivery. Problem solved.
 
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