How to File a Shipping Insurance Claim

How to File a Shipping Insurance ClaimIf your package gets damaged, lost or stolen in transit and it was covered by shipping insurance, you can file an insurance claim with your carrier to get reimbursed. Today, let’s figure out how to file an insurance claim with major carriers: the United States Postal Service, UPS, and FedEx.

Most carriers allow to file an insurance claim online from your user account (which you probably already have if you’ve printed a shipping label for your package online). The basic steps of filing a claim are the same for each shipping carrier.

1. Gather supporting documentation. Although gathering supporting documentation isn’t always required, it will help your claim get approved and resolved more quickly. What kind of supporting documents should you provide? They include:

  • tracking or label number of your package
  • evidence of insurance (mailing receipt, photo of the package showing the shipping label, printout from the app you used to print the shipping label and purchase the postage insurance)
  • proof of value (retail receipt, paid invoice, printout of the online transaction, credit card billing statement, etc.)
  • proof of damage such as photos of damaged package and items (for damage claims)

2. Log in to your account and file a claim: fill out an online claim form, attach the supporting documentation, and submit the claim.

3. Track the status of your claim in your personal account. If your claim is approved, you should receive a reimbursement. If your claim is denied, you should receive a letter with the reasons for the denial; carriers typically allow to file an appeal based on these reasons.

Now, let’s take a closer look at how to file a claim with major shipping carriers.

Filing a USPS Claim

The USPS has slightly different procedures for filing an insurance claim for domestic and international shipments. International claims are different from domestic claims because the USPS has to coordinate the inquiry with foreign postal services.

One of the things that is different is the filing period, which depends on the mail service. If you need to file a damage or missing contents claim, you may file it immediately after arrival of the package but no later than 60 days after the mailing date that is stated on your receipt.

If your package has been lost or stolen, the filing period depends on the service you used:

  • Priority Mail Express: file after 7 days but before 60 days
  • Priority Mail: file after 15 days but before 60 days
  • Global Express Guaranteed: file after 3 days but before 30 days
  • Priority Mail Express International: file after 3 days but before 60 days
  • Priority Mail International: file after 7 days but before 6 months

Please note that you cannot submit a Global Express Guaranteed inquiry online. To file a claim, you need to call USPS Customer Service. Online inquiries for international packages shipped from the United States to a foreign country can be initiated only by the sender.

Domestic claims can be filed by mail. To file a claim, request to have a Domestic Claim Form mailed to you by calling the National Materials Customer Service. Complete the form and mail it to the adress on the form. Don’t forget to mail evidence of insurance and proof of value along with the form.

If your claim gets approved, you should receive the money within 7–10 business days.

Filing a FedEx Claim

You can file a FedEx insurance claim online for FedEx Express and FedEx Ground shipments within the United States, from Canada to the United States, and from the United States to foreign countries. If your shipment did not originate in the United States or Canada, you need to call FedEx International Customer Service.

Once your claim is filed, FedEx allows to upload additional supporting documentation. Please note that you don’t have to file documentation for shipments with a declared value of less than $100. The filing deadline for damage or missing contents claims is 21 calendar days from the mailing date for international packages and 60 calendar days for domestic packages. If your shipment was lost, you must file a claim within nine months of the mailing date.

Filing a UPS Claim

You can file a UPS claim for lost or damaged packages within 60 days of the scheduled delivery date. Processing usually takes 8 to 15 business days. While your claim is being processed, you can edit it and upload additional supporting documentation. If your claim gets approved, your payment can be deposited into your bank account or sent by a paper check.