Package Theft? 3 Steps to Take if Your Package Is Stolen

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Chances are you or someone you know has been the victim of a dastardly porch pirate. Around 26 million packages are stolen every year and that’s just in the US. It’s one of the most frustrating things that can happen, but you don’t have to sit there on your empty doorstep and just take it. There are things you can do to try to replace your property, get a refund or catch the culprit.

Getting a Replacement

In my experience, this is the most successful tactic and the simplest to carry out. Most companies are quick to send out another item, especially for things that cost less than $100, but remember, no company is obligated to replace a stolen item. If you do want to try to replace the last item, have your order and delivery information ready, that includes the confirmation number for the order and the tracking number for the shipping. You also want to be ready with any documentation that can support the fact that the package was actually swiped.

Some things to consider, if you’re buying a one-of-a-kind item or something that’s worth more than $100, it’s a good idea to add insurance to the shipment. And if you can’t add insurance on your own, find out if the company automatically provides them and preferably do that before you click buy. The burden of proof is on you to prove the item was stolen. Video or camera evidence is your best friend in this case a smart doorbell or security camera can capture the footage that you need to prove your case. And some companies might require you to file a police report or to file a claim with the carrier who delivered the package as well.

Get a Refund

Getting a refund or reimbursement.This is another approach that can help take the sting out of losing a beloved package to thieves. And there are more ways to get a refund and you might think. You can try to get a refund from the seller, from the carrier that shipped and delivered the item from your credit card companies, like American Express include automatic coverage for purchases that are stolen. And you can also try to get a refund from your home owners. However you’re gonna have to weigh the benefit and burden of filing a claim, and dealing with any deductible that you have. Additional things to consider: you might be out of luck if you didn’t insure the package. Again the burden of proof will still be on you to prove it was stolen, and at the end of the day you may only get a partial refund which could be for the shipping only, for the item only, or for a little bit of either.

Get a Culprit

Let’s be honest, this is the thing we wish could happen, but it is also the most difficult thing to do when it comes to package theft. This has the lowest probability of success. In 2018 the US Postal Inspection Service arrested around 2,500 suspects for mail and package theft. That’s less than 1% of the 26 million packages that are swiped every year, and police don’t have any better luck. But filing a report can help law enforcement identify areas where porch pirates are running rampant. Some ways to improve your odds of identifying a package thief, include using a doorbell camera or other security cam to catch package neighbors, red-handed, teaming up with neighbors to pull video footage or you could elect a block captain who’s usually home and can keep an eye out for suspicious activity or round up packages before anyone else can get them. In addition, you have the option to utilize the Ring Neighbors app. This provides reports from neighbors and law enforcement about suspicious activities and package theft in your area. Plus it comes with footage of the creepers that are stealing everyone’s stuff. And best of all there is no ring camera or subscription needed. It’s completely free.


Biding stuff online is fun and convenient, but if your packages are dropped off on your porch, you’re taking a risk. Don’t let your stuff end up in the hands of package thieves.

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