It might be small and it might seem insignificant, but that tiny piece of paper called a delivery receipt gives self-employed drivers some powerful protection. Don’t ever underestimate it.
Technically, self-employed drivers can be prosecuted for theft if something goes missing from a delivery that they have made and that item was not signed for in a valid manner. Don’t leave yourself exposed to legal and financial risk: get a receipt and get one that works. Here are some do’s and don’ts when it comes to delivery receipts.
These tips apply to documenting both the collection of items and their delivery.
Do Keep a Copy
When you collect a load for your vehicle or when you deliver that load, there should be a delivery note. For your protection, make sure that you keep a copy of those receipts for your records.
Do Carry a Pad of Delivery Notes
In the unusual circumstance that there is no paperwork provided, create your own receipt. You should carry a pad of blank delivery notes in your vehicle to cover this eventuality.
Do Note Damage in Writing
When you collect your load, you might notice damage or poor packaging. Make sure that you record the extent of the damage in writing and that this record is signed legibly by the person from whom you are collecting the item. You don’t want to be accused of causing the problem while the goods were in your custody.
Don’t Accept a Squiggle
The delivery note isn’t worth the paper it’s printed on if the signature is an illegible scribble or a set of anonymous initials. These won’t stand up in court. Ask for a printed name beneath any signature that you are given.
Don’t Sign for the Unverified
If you collect five boxes, and the receipt states that you are picking up five boxes containing 250 watches, you must reject the collection note. Unless you are prepared to open the boxes and count the number of watches inside, you cannot make yourself responsible for quantities that you can’t verify. Get the receipt changed to state ‘five boxes only’.
Don’t Accept Promises
It would be lovely if everyone’s word was good enough. Sadly, that’s not realistic in a world where self-employed drivers are vulnerable to be held liable for mishaps. Do not accept a load without physical proof – it’s simply too risky to rely on a receipt being forwarded electronically or posted after you have departed.
Undoubtedly, self-employed drivers are at risk of being unfairly blamed in the course of their delivery work. However, the good news is that it’s really easy to protect yourself against this vulnerability. Make the delivery note your trusty shield and you can make your deliveries with confidence.
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