Porch pirates are keeping an eye on homes in hopes of getting ahold of your packages before you do. But what happens if they’re successful in their attempts? Here’s what you should do if someone steals your package or mail, regardless of whether or not it’s possible to recover.
What Should I Do If My Package is Stolen?
If you think your package was stolen, don’t panic. Here are some steps you can take right away.
- Check your tracking link to make sure it has been delivered. Your package delivery time may be delayed so it could still be on the way even though it’s past the expected timeframe.
- First, check with your neighbors. Unfortunately, sometimes mail carriers accidentally drop packages off at a different address. It’s a common oversight.
If your package has been marked as ‘Delivered,’ and you’ve checked with your neighbors, your package may be stolen.
- Contact the seller to make sure your package has been delivered and make sure all information is accurate. While you’re at it, ask about their policies for replacements, refunds and other solutions.
- Reach out to the shipping provider who’s responsible for sending your package. They may be able to track it and start a claim if it’s missing. If you added insurance to your package prior to shipping, you might receive a full refund for your items easier.
- File a police report to record the incident. If you have a video doorbell or outdoor security camera that caught the action you can share footage of what happened for them to hopefully find the thief.
What Happens if USPS Loses My Package?
If you believe the United States Postal Service (USPS) has lost your package you should still report it and follow the same steps to recover it. USPS also has a page online to make the tracking process easier. You’ll be able to check the status of your package, file a claim for your missing mail and complete a form for further help.
USPS may deliver a refund if you use Priority Mail Express or one of their other money-back insurance offers or guarantees.
How to Prevent Future Porch Pirates
Never leave your packages on the porch for long periods of time. It gives thieves more time to snag your mail without you noticing. There are a few ways to reduce the risk of your packages being stolen. Here are some recommended tips.
- Install home security cameras: If thieves see that you have a video doorbell or outdoor security camera, they may think twice before taking your package because its more likely they’ll be caught. And if they do, you;ll be able to share the footage with cops when you file your police report.
- Ask your package to be hidden: Some sellers and shippers ask about delivery instructions such as hiding the package behind bushes or the backyard. If you have a place around the house that is less likely for porch pirates to notice, leave a note in the instructions for the mail carrier.
- Pick it up right away: Schedule a timeframe for your package to be delivered so you can pick it up right away without any worries. You can also arrange for it to be picked up at your local post office, FedEx, UPS, or Amazon location if you’re going out of town.
- Request a signature: When you request a signature for delivery, you know it won’t be left without one. The mail carrier will leave a note at your door of the expected day they’ll return or the location to pick up the package. If you have an expensive package or important mail a signature is the best way to go.