How to deal with a rude junk mail delivery lad?

20th October 2015

There is a lad who delivers leaflets from estate agents, replace windows companies and restaurants. I have asked him not to deliver any of the leaflets to my address. His reply was that he has to deliver the leaflets to every address. Today I opened the door to him to stop him from delivering leaflets but he left them outside my door just walked off. Can you please advise me what to do?

Dr Junk Buster's answer: 

Assuming that the lad isn't a postman and doesn't work for a leaflet distributor that's a member of the Direct Marketing Association there's no formal action you can take. Leaflets delivered by the postman can be stopped by registering with Royal Mail's opt-out scheme for unaddressed mail, and there's a similar scheme for leaflets distributed by members of the Direct Marketing Association, called Your Choice. Apart from that unaddressed mail is completely unregulated. That means you can't make a formal complaint about the overzealous junk mail deliverer – there's simply nobody to complain to.

That said, tackling these sorts of problems informally is often more effective. I'd suggest contacting the senders about the issue. You can explain to the estate agents et all that their leaflet distributor ignores polite requests not to deliver unsolicited leaflets to your address – ask them if they're aware of this and whether or not they approve of this policy. Also ask them for the name of the distribution company, so that you can also raise the issue with them – chances are that the distributor doesn't approve of the lad's rude behaviour.

In the unlikely event that the senders and the distributor argue that there's nothing wrong with force-feeding people unsolicited leaflets you could next contact a local newspaper – force them to explain their practice in public!