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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Business Law
Satisfied Customers: 110421
Experience:  All corporate law, including non-profits and charitable fraternal organizations.
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Question Delay of FedEx shipment to Louisiana. I recently

Customer Question

Question: Delay of FedEx shipment to Louisiana.

I recently shipped a display booth, and a box of supplies, from New Jersey to a trade show in New Orleans. The supplies arrived, but the booth, which was shown on line in the New Orleans "hub" was, in fact, lost in Memphis, and not discovered until 11 days after scheduled delivery.

Thus, I had no "booth" at one of the major trade shows of the year--one at which my company was launching a new book, thus had planned a significant presence.

The shipping labels were all FedEx prescribed materials, but now I am told the labels "fell off" as they don't work with trade show cases.

The booth is now being returned, but I expect compensation for my investment in booth space, etc. FedEx states that they are not liable for contingent damages, however I believe that they are. This was not an "act of God"--it was an error on the part of FedEx, for which I will feel the consequences for the next year.

Suggestions on next steps?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Business Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 7 years ago.
If you read your contract with them, there is a limitation of liability clause on the shipping agreement you signed. It will tell you that their limitation is the cost of the item shipped if lost or the cost of the shipping refunded. As far as the fees for your losses from the show, you will have to demonstrate negligence on their part and there will litigation since you will have to prove their negligence and that would include the defective shipping labels. you would have a potential claim, but only upon proving negligence, which is one thing they cannot limit their liability on, but it will require going to court more than likely because FedEx generally litigates everything.

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Customer: replied 7 years ago.

Thank you for your answer. It basically confirmed what I already knew; and did not give me a practical avenue to proceed. As a small business, I cannot readily afford a lawsuit, especiall against "deep pockets"--and, of course, the loss of business from clients who will not approach a vendor with a plain table in front of a plain curtain has just made my situation that much worse.


It is unconscionable that FedEx accepts no liability from the failure of labeling they provide, placed on a package accepted by their employee. As a frequent speaker on organizational performance and quality process, I expect to have many opportunities to share my experiences, and perhaps save others from a FedEx service gap.


Per the agreement, I will confirm payment for your response.

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 7 years ago.
Well, I am sorry about this, but the only practical avenue to proceed against them is first obtain an attorney and send them a reasonable demand with copies of bills for expenses you incurred and allege negligence. If they do not respond to that, then your sole recourse is to sue, that is it. While they may not accept liability, if you prove they were negligent based upon providing defective labels, then you would have a way to proceed, but it would be through court if they do not respond it is off to court you go.