If you're of the opinion that junk mailers are trespassers you might be interested in the below notice letter. It just might stop those types of junk mail that are otherwise next to impossible to get rid off, such as adverts addressed 'To the Occupier' and take-away leaflets. It could even get you some money from junk mail offenders. If you're really savvy you could then phone the Beeb and become a National Hero / Celebrity. Think Richard Herman, the clever man who got compensation from junk callers.
The trespass notice is a slightly amended version of a letter created by a company called Jo-One. Between late 2010 and early 2011 Jo-One managed to get compensation from several major junk mailers - among others, Virgin Media allegedly paid several hundreds pounds to Jo-One for breaching the notice time and again. Unfortunately, the original notice letter was eventually challenged in court and Jo-One lost the case. You can take that as a disclaimer; the legal status of the notice letter is clear as mud, and success and Celebrity Status aren't guaranteed. In fact, part of the success Jo-One had can be explained by the fact that most junk mailers will fail to respond to (and act on) your notice letter. By the time you submit your compensation claim via Money Claim Online the offender has already been defeated. Plus, paying your invoice is cheaper for the sender than hiring the services of a solicitor to challenge your claim.
If you're interested in using the notice letter you may want to get a copy as a PDF, ODT (LibreOffice) or plain text file. You're free to adapt / improve the notice as you see fit - although I would appreciate it if you would send me your adapted / improved version. I could then share it with the rest of the Interwebs (we're all in this together, right?).
With all that out of the way, here's your trespass notice:
[ Your name ]
[ Your address ]
[ Your postcode ]
[ Date ]
[ Sender's name ]
[ Sender's address ]
[ Sender's postcode ]
Notice to [ Company ]
Dear sir or Madam,
On [ date ], unaddressed marketing material from [ Company ] was deposited on my property.
I hereby write to notify that no person acting on behalf of [ Company ] has permission to enter on to or deposit material on to my property. This naturally includes any employee of [ Company ] as well as any third party acting on behalf of [ Company ] entering on to and/or depositing material on to my property. Please note that this includes all addressed and unaddressed material.
Any prior agreement to deposit material on to my property is hereby revoked. This Notice is considered valid under the law of trespass. I am sure that you are already aware that:
- Trespass to land in civil law consists of any unjustifiable intrusion by a person upon the land in possession of another;
- Trespass is actionable in court without the need to prove damage has occurred; and
- Trespass to land can include any action to place something on, or in, land in the possession of another.
It is accepted that there are a number of legal justifications to trespass which include: licence to enter by law; justification by right of way or easement; justification by licence or necessity; and various powers of entry granted to officers of the law, such as the police. However, it cannot be justified when a reasonable alternative exists. These alternatives exist through the possibility for [ Company ] to:
- Undertake the distribution of material through addressed mail;
- Use existing employees (or hire temporary or permanent staff) to deposit the material; or
- Appoint a third party who will, under request of [ Company ] (and any other company), would not deposit material to [NAME] property.
It is noted (unless [ Company ] can show otherwise) that material for marketing purposes is subject to trespass law.
Should [ Company ] appoint a third party to undertake the actual depositing of the material, please note that it is [ Company ]'s responsibility to ensure that they are appointed under suitable terms and conditions. No contract can be entered in to if it is in breach of existing statute.
No matter what possible opt-out schemes that this third party may have, your duty to comply with this notification has far higher standing. The third party also has to simply cease the delivery of all addressed and/or unaddressed items which it is appointed to deposit – including that which I may consider useful. The activities of other companies is of no relevance to this Notification, neither is my relationship with any other company.
Any issue that is created through [ Company ] appointing a third party cannot be passed on to me. [ Company ] must be responsible and liable for any third party appointments, ensuring that any statutory obligation is adhered to.
It is noted that Royal Mail have a duty to deliver addressed mail where postage has been paid, but unaddressed material obviously does not fall under this category. Addressed mail should not be sent to be delivered.
This notification is applicable immediately, so please ensure that all of the relevant people involved in the process of creating the material, selecting the properties to deposit the material, and instructing those acting on [ Company ]'s behalf to deposit the material are fully aware.
Any future incident from the date of receipt of this Notification which sees actions taken by employees of [ Company ] resulting in people entering on to or depositing material on to my property will be treated as a breach of this Notification.
Any breach of this Notification will be dealt with as detailed in the Terms and Conditions of this Notification.
It is assumed that the contents of this Notification are clear and understood by its recipient, and that it is passed on to the most relevant persons. I will not accept any delay caused by internal processes which continues to see material deposited on to my property.
Please ensure that this Notification is dealt with sufficiently and correctly. No leniency shall be given for any problems caused by a failure to deal with this suitably within the reasonable time, and [ Company ] will be liable for any such failure.
Request for Information
In order to deal with this matter, [ Company ] is requested to send the following information to me within 21 days:
- Any proof of justification by law;
- Any proof of justification by licence;
- Any proof of necessity;
- Any proof of an overriding statutory duty, obligation or process which requires the material to be deposited on to my property;
- Any proof of appointing a third party which resulted in depositing of material on to my land;
- Further to item 5, a copy of the terms and conditions of such an appointment;
- Any agreement to transfer your legal duties and obligations to any third party appointed by yourselves;
- A process map of all of the decisions and an indication of the number and company role of those involved in developing material, selecting the addresses and appointing any third party;
- A copy of any previous agreement which existed between [ Company ] and me regarding permission to enter on to and deposit material on to my property;
- Confirmation that the alternative options presented have been considered, and the reasons why they were/will be rejected; and
- Any alternative address or person who future correspondence should be addressed to.
Please note that failure to provide this information will see the following assumptions being made:
- That no justification can be offered for the depositing of the material;
- That no third party has been appointed, or that [ Company ] remain fully liable for their appointment;
- That only those in the correct position, acting in accordance with their job description (or as delegated) are involved in the marketing process;
- That there is no existing agreement which exists between [ Company ] and me;
- That the alternative options have either not been rejected, or have been rejected for purely business related purposes;
- That this is the correct address to forward any further correspondence required.
Alternatively, please simply confirm that you have received this Notification and agree to the Terms and Conditions.
Terms and Conditions of this Notification
Any issues raised by this Notification must be confirmed in writing to me within 21 days, in order to respond fully to those matters within 28 days.
Any issues raised after 21 days will not be considered due to a reasonable time passing unless it is confirmed otherwise.
Any breach of this Notification is on the basis that [ Company ] agree in advance to provide a payment to me of £[ your compensation claim - £25 to £50 is reasonable ].
Following any breach, a Notice for Payment will be issued to confirm the total payment due.
[ Company ] will send the payments by two separate cheques within 28 days of the Notice for Payment.
If [ Company ] confirms within 21 days that payments will be sent, a 14 day extension will be granted if requested to allow for those payments to be processed internally.
Should payment not be received within 28 days of the Notice for Payment, further action will be taken through Money Claim Online to retrieve the payments.
All additional costs will be recovered.
For each hour spent in dealing with the matter further, £[ your hourly rate - £25 is reasonable ] will be added to the payment.
Any abortive costs due to the information requested being provided after they have been incurred will be reimbursed by [ Company ].
I will not be liable for any costs associated for [ Company ] to comply with this Notification.
If [ Company ] do not agree with these Terms and Conditions, and do not wish to provide the payments, then you have the very simple option of not taking the many necessary steps which result in a person acting on your behalf entering on to and depositing material on to my property.
[ your name ]