Oh dear, I opened a neighbour’s mail

@Asylum (48282)
Manchester, England
March 24, 2017 8:03am CST
The mailwoman brought several items of mail today, so I decided to open them prior to going out. The second letter that I opened had a driving licence enclosed, which definitely confused me. When I looked at the address it was addressed to a neighbour 2 doors away. It had not occurred to me to read the address first because I assumed that since it was delivered to my home it must be my mail. I put the contents back into the envelope and checked the other addresses, discovering that another one had the same name and address on it. This left me with one opened and one sealed envelope belonging to a neighbour. Rather than just push it through the letterbox I decided to knock in order to explain how the envelope was opened. However, nobody answered the door, so I finally just posted it anyway. I will certainly be checking all future mail more carefully to avoid a repetition of this.
20 people like this
20 responses
@LadyDuck (147908)
• Switzerland
24 Mar 17
You should inform your neighbor and let him decide if it's the case to introduce a complain with the Post Office. I complained last week with our Post Office, the mailman "forgot" to bring us a package. After I complained, I had the package the day after at 7:30 in the morning.
6 people like this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
24 Mar 17
I have no desire to get the postwoman into trouble over what was obviously a simple mistake. Unfortunately I failed to notice until I had opened it.
4 people like this
@LadyDuck (147908)
• Switzerland
24 Mar 17
@Asylum If your postwoman is good I understand that you do not want to get her in trouble. The postman who did not deliver our package is not at all a good worker and he tend to "forget" to deliver the mail if he only has one thing to deliver in our area.
4 people like this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
24 Mar 17
@LadyDuck I know the lady well and she always speaks when I pass her in the street.
4 people like this
@JudyEv (119172)
• Bunbury, Australia
24 Mar 17
That's easily done. You don't expect to have to check the addresses on mail delivered to your house.
6 people like this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
24 Mar 17
It is not the first time that I have received wrong mail, but it is the first time that I have opened one.
4 people like this
@Fleura (7113)
• United Kingdom
24 Mar 17
Whoops! These things happen. I have done the same when a bunch of mail arrived and I just opened it all and then found one wasn't mine. I re-sealed it with tape and wrote an apologetic note on the envelope. Sometimes the postman, in a rush, just pushes a bundle in. Just this morning I received a letter for one of our neighbours. In the past I have also received other people's mail in an envelope addressed to me, along with a letter for me from the same sender. This has happened a couple of times when two pieces of paper have been picked up together, from places like banks.
5 people like this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
24 Mar 17
I have had mail addressed wrongly before and also mail addressed correctly and posted through my door. Usually I would notice, but this time I opened them prior to paying attention to the address.
1 person likes this
@Gillygirl (17278)
• Sutton, England
24 Mar 17
This has happened to me too. I apologised to my neighbour and she complained to the post office. I have had mail for occupants of other streets but with my house number. I find this worrying as I delivered these letters but some people wouldn't.
4 people like this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
24 Mar 17
A good point, for all we know mail of ours could have been delivered elsewhere and just discarded.
4 people like this
@Gillygirl (17278)
• Sutton, England
24 Mar 17
@Asylum We had a very bad postman, I was worried about bank details getting in the wrong hands. The new one is more diligent.
4 people like this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
24 Mar 17
@Gillygirl A lot of mail is sensitive and nobody would want it to end up in the wrong hands.
2 people like this
@mysdianait (64064)
• Italy
24 Mar 17
Luckily it was only a driving licence. Couod have been much worse had it been something more embarassing
3 people like this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
24 Mar 17
I had not thought about that. It would have proven rather embarrassing for my neighbour.
1 person likes this
@mysdianait (64064)
• Italy
24 Mar 17
@Asylum Yes and it might have been difficult for you to give them it after you had opened it too
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
24 Mar 17
@mysdianait That is why I knocked on the door to explain, but nobody was in. I will mention it when I see him next.
2 people like this
@Mike197602 (13363)
• Worcester, England
24 Mar 17
Things like that happen occasionally. When I've had a house on my own I've received neighbours mail a few times...didn't go as far as opening it though. Now I live in a house cut up into 4 flats they just dump the mail on the hall table and we have to sort through it to find ours...that reduces the likelihood of me opening somebody elses mail
2 people like this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
24 Mar 17
I have also received the wrong mail in the past, but this was the first time that I did not realise.
1 person likes this
• United States
25 Mar 17
And your fingerprints are all over the opened letter.....unless of course you prudently wiped it clean.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
25 Mar 17
Dear, I forgot about that. My DNA will be on it as well.
1 person likes this
• United States
26 Mar 17
@Asylum This is why everyone needs to keep on good terms with the neighbors. No brawling.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
26 Mar 17
@Jeanniemaries Fortunately I am on very good terms with my neighbours.
1 person likes this
• United States
3 Apr 17
That is very nice of you and mistakes happen. Sometimes I do not double check assuming the mail delivered is mine. Recently, the mail carrier delivered my package to a different home and they were nice to bring it back to us. But in the most suspicious way.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
3 Apr 17
I consider it important to ensure that the mail ends up where it belongs.
1 person likes this
• United States
3 Apr 17
@Asylum I agree with you. It could have been something important and what if some do not return the mail to the right ownership.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
3 Apr 17
@infatuatedbby Exactly, it is easier to just throw it in the dustbin, but quite unacceptable.
1 person likes this
@Lubuto (2261)
• Zambia
2 Apr 17
Yes you better check them in future before opening. I hope your neighbor will understand.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
2 Apr 17
It only happened because I was in a rush to go out.
1 person likes this
@Lubuto (2261)
• Zambia
2 Apr 17
@Asylum I understand, have you spoken to your neighbor?
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
2 Apr 17
@Lubuto I have not even seen him since.
• Midland, Michigan
25 Mar 17
You could probably have put a small note on the envelope so they'd know it didn't travel through the mail in that manner. I've mistakenly opened our neighbors mail before too. You'd think after all this time they'd get it right.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
25 Mar 17
The idea of writing a short message on the envelope only occurred to me after I had pushed it through the letterbox.
1 person likes this
• Midland, Michigan
25 Mar 17
@Asylum Yes, and since you hoped to talk with them anyway, you probably didn't think to carry a pen just in case. I think of things after the fact too. If and when you see those neighbors about outside, you may want to let them know from whence it came, or not.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
25 Mar 17
@MarshaMusselman I intend to inform them, but do not encounter them very often.
1 person likes this
@allknowing (61918)
• India
24 Mar 17
It is not your fault. The mail was delivered to you and so you own it (lol)
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
25 Mar 17
Strictly speaking it is still a criminal offence, although nobody would ever really try to enforce that.
1 person likes this
@allknowing (61918)
• India
25 Mar 17
@Asylum That is why that (lol) there!!
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
25 Mar 17
@allknowing I did realise that.
1 person likes this
@Inlemay (16490)
• South Africa
3 Apr 17
oops
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
3 Apr 17
Not quite the word that passed through my mind, but a similar meaning.
1 person likes this
@garymarsh6 (13198)
• United Kingdom
26 Mar 17
Easy mistake. I am sure your neighbour would not be too angry! She should be grateful that you bothered to take it to her!
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
26 Mar 17
That is the biggest danger concerning mail being delivered incorrectly, too many people would simply discard it in the dustbin.
1 person likes this
@BelleStarr (37118)
• Portland, Connecticut
25 Mar 17
It has happened to me before but usually before I open it.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
25 Mar 17
I have always realised previously, but this time I had quite a bit of mail and chose to open them quickly before going out.
1 person likes this
@megatron777 (3779)
• Guam
25 Mar 17
Ok be careful next time.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
25 Mar 17
I certainly will.
@moirai (1471)
• Philippines
25 Mar 17
Hehe. There have been a few times when mail for neighbors have been left for us but so far, we've been able to catch it before we open them. But I can certainly understand accidentally opening mail that's not for you but was left in your mailbox. After all, one would expect all the mail left in your mailbox is for you. I guess a quick look at the names and addresses when first sorting through the mail will clear up this mistake.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
25 Mar 17
This is the first time that I have actually opened one.
1 person likes this
@sishy7 (27666)
• Australia
24 Mar 17
That has happened to me with an office mail... It was put on my desk and I just opened it without looking... It was an infringement notice for speeding and I knew it wasn't mine when I saw the plate number. I checked the address and it was for the office unit next to ours... So I walked nextdoor and felt pretty awkward explaining what happened...
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
24 Mar 17
I remember a work colleague once being accidentally handed my wage slip, which he naturally opened. He queried what key money was and was informed that he should not be getting that payment, which was when he noticed that it was the wrong wage slip.
1 person likes this
@JESSY3236 (6095)
• United States
24 Mar 17
I have had my neighbor's mail before. If I do, I would put it in the out box again.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
24 Mar 17
I would normally just deliver it, but for once I failed to notice.
1 person likes this
@amadeo (61880)
• United States
24 Mar 17
I think you made the right choice.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
24 Mar 17
It seemed like the only logical thing to do.
1 person likes this
@sol_cee (14333)
• Saint Vincent And The Grenadines
24 Mar 17
That's strange. Do you happen to have the same family name? Or maybe almost similar house number?
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48282)
• Manchester, England
24 Mar 17
The house number is similar because this was intended for an address 2 doors along the street.
1 person likes this