OT: Postal charges for forwarding mail?


T

Tim Downie

Whenever I've had to forward any unopened mail I've just readdressed the
envelope and stuck it back in a post box without paying any more postage.

Usually this works although earlier this week one letter "bounced" and came
back to our house despite my attempts to obliterate the old address.

What I've never been sure of though is the what the rules/laws are regarding
postal charges. I've always assumed that for standard letters there is no
charge. How about bigger letters or parcels?

I've tried googling but that just seems to throw up info about Royal Mail's
paid for forwarding service (after a house move say)..

Just what are the rules? Are they online anywhere?

Tim
 
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D

Dave Osborne

Tim said:
Whenever I've had to forward any unopened mail I've just readdressed the
envelope and stuck it back in a post box without paying any more postage.

Usually this works although earlier this week one letter "bounced" and
came back to our house despite my attempts to obliterate the old address.

What I've never been sure of though is the what the rules/laws are
regarding postal charges. I've always assumed that for standard letters
there is no charge. How about bigger letters or parcels?

I've tried googling but that just seems to throw up info about Royal
Mail's paid for forwarding service (after a house move say)..

Just what are the rules? Are they online anywhere?

Tim
I always thought that (certainly for a letter) the Post Office contracts
to deliver to the person, rather than the address, so you should be able
to amend the address on unopened mail and it will be forwarded on. I
don't know if this is written down anywhere, but you could call Royal
Mail customer service and ask them.

General Personal enquiries.
Call this number to contact a Customer Service advisor.
within UK - 08457 740 740
8am - 6pm, Monday to Friday.
8am - 1pm on Saturdays
 
P

pcb1962

Whenever I've had to forward any unopened mail I've just readdressed the
envelope and stuck it back in a post box without paying any more postage.

Usually this works although earlier this week one letter "bounced" and came
back to our house despite my attempts to obliterate the old address.

What I've never been sure of though is the what the rules/laws are regarding
postal charges.  I've always assumed that for standard letters there isno
charge.  How about bigger letters or parcels?

I've tried googling but that just seems to throw up info about Royal Mail's
paid for forwarding service (after a house move say)..

Just what are the rules?  Are they online anywhere?
Yes, here: ftp://ftp.royalmail.com/Downloads/public/ctf/rm/ilp_scheme_6_april_2010_ps.pdf
Forwarding is covered in section 6, basically you mustn't open it and
you mustn't obscure the name of the original recipient.
 
H

Harry

I always thought that (certainly for a letter) the Post Office contracts
to deliver to the person, rather than the address, so you should be able
Minor point, but they deliver to the address, not the person.
 
D

Dave Osborne

Harry said:
Minor point, but they deliver to the address, not the person.
Harry, I fear you are missing the point. If the Royal Mail just
delivered to the address, then they would demand additional payment to
forward an unopened letter. As they don't demand additional payment and
indeed will continue to forward an unopened letter indefinitely for no
extra charge, then the principle *must* be that you pay for the letter
to be delivered to the person.

This is no doubt a hold-over from when the postal service started.
Without sending an agent or going to find somebody yourself, the only
way to be in contact with anybody was by letter and the sender may well
not know the whereabouts of the recipient at any given time.

Therefore, the sender had the option of writing to someone at their home
or business address and waiting an indeterminate time for a response or,
if the recipient was know to be travelling, address the correspondence
as dictated by some kind of previously agreed planned itinerary in the
hope that the letter would be held, delivered or forwarded as appropriate.

The principle was (and is) that you simply could not expect a third
party intermediate (such as an innkeeper) to pay to forward a letter
that had nothing to do with them, nor could you expect a recipient to
pay accumulated forwarding charges.
 
P

pcb1962

Harry, I fear you are missing the point. If the Royal Mail just
delivered to the address, then they would demand additional payment to
forward an unopened letter. As they don't demand additional payment and
indeed will continue to forward an unopened letter indefinitely for no
extra charge, then the principle *must* be that you pay for the letter
to be delivered to the person.

This is no doubt a hold-over from when the postal service started.
Without sending an agent or going to find somebody yourself, the only
way to be in contact with anybody was by letter and the sender may well
not know the whereabouts of the recipient at any given time.

Therefore, the sender had the option of writing to someone at their home
or business address and waiting an indeterminate time for a response or,
if the recipient was know to be travelling, address the correspondence
as dictated by some kind of previously agreed planned itinerary in the
hope that the letter would be held, delivered or forwarded as appropriate..

The principle was (and is) that you simply could not expect a third
party intermediate (such as an innkeeper) to pay to forward a letter
that had nothing to do with them, nor could you expect a recipient to
pay accumulated forwarding charges.
"Our duty is to deliver items to the address and not the person whose
name is written or printed on the item."
ftp://ftp.royalmail.com/Downloads/public/ctf/rm/rm_general_ts&cs_dec09_update.pdf
 
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T

Tinkerer

Dave Osborne said:
Harry, I fear you are missing the point. If the Royal Mail just delivered
to the address, then they would demand additional payment to forward an
unopened letter. As they don't demand additional payment and indeed will
continue to forward an unopened letter indefinitely for no extra charge,
then the principle *must* be that you pay for the letter to be delivered
to the person.

This is no doubt a hold-over from when the postal service started. Without
sending an agent or going to find somebody yourself, the only way to be in
contact with anybody was by letter and the sender may well not know the
whereabouts of the recipient at any given time.

Therefore, the sender had the option of writing to someone at their home
or business address and waiting an indeterminate time for a response or,
if the recipient was know to be travelling, address the correspondence as
dictated by some kind of previously agreed planned itinerary in the hope
that the letter would be held, delivered or forwarded as appropriate.

The principle was (and is) that you simply could not expect a third party
intermediate (such as an innkeeper) to pay to forward a letter that had
nothing to do with them, nor could you expect a recipient to pay
accumulated forwarding charges.
Harry was correct. Delivery is to the address, not the person. This is
true of all mail including Recorded Delivery and Special Delivery (that
which used to be called Registered Post). However, under the provisions of
the Post Office Act, mail marked by a resident for fowarding and reposted is
indeed carried free of charge. The charge raised for redirecting mail,
which is collected through a single fee, covers the costs of gathering mail
for an addressee who has moved and marking it up for redirection, the actual
carriage is not charged.
 
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Hi - I'm looking for some help on this topic too.

Please can you point me to the bit of the Post Office Act which deals with this informal redirection? i have had problems recently with mail returned to me marked "unofficial redirection" and the man in the local PO couldn't explain why as he thought that what I had done readdressing the letters was still OK. But of course he said that they are "PO counters" not the Royal Mail and as others have said there are no guidelines on the RM website other than their paid for service. But this isn't really appropriate for temporary changes of address eg students so I am puzzled as to why I got these letters bounced back.

thanks
 
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Forwarding no longer free

Hi,

Old topic, but as a stumbled on this via Google I thought I would update in case anyone else is looking at this thread.

Unofficial forwarding is NOT permitted under the terms and conditions of the Royal Mail United Kingdom Post Scheme. RM may deal with or dispose of such items at their discretion.

On;
  • www DOT royalmail.com/terms-and-conditions/

There is a link to;
  • www DOT royalmail.com/sites/default/files/RoyalMail_United_Kingdom_Post_Scheme_Oct2013.pdf

Which under section 15.7 states the following;

15.7 Forwarding – unofficial redirections – We are not under any obligation to do anything with an item that someone requests to be forwarded to another address other than the return to sender address on the cover. We consider these unpaid for, forwarding requests to be a form of unofficial redirections request. Typically in this situation the original address is crossed out and a written request (e.g. “please forward to”) is made on the cover to forward the item to another address. This is normally attempted in order to try to get the item to the addressee who has moved to another address. In these situations the person moving should take out a Redirection service with us or provide pre-paid stationery. If we find an item that someone has requested be forwarded to another address then the item may be dealt with or disposed of at our discretion.
Whether this is a recent change, I do not know. I have certainly done this in the past (both redirected to me, and by me, on multiple occasions), and have never had a problem.

Hope that helps someone!

*Apologies for the malformed URLs, apparently the forum doesn't let new members posts proper URLs... If someone who can edit them for me see's this then that would be much appreciated.
 

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