What is “the ordinary course of post” and why is it important?

Some legislation and company constitutions prescribe that a notice sent by post is deemed to be given on the date when it would have been delivered in “the ordinary course of post”. What does that expression mean?

Australia Post currently advertises next day delivery within metropolitan areas of capital cities, towns or environs within the same state.

Accordingly for post within a city or town you can deem delivery the day after posting and commence counting the notice period (if one is required) from the day after deemed receipt.

But Australia Post has announced that from September 2015 a new regular service will deliver mail two days slower than the current timetable.

If your constitution currently calculates time of delivery of notices with reference to “the ordinary course of post” you should consider adopting a fixed deemed delivery date so that there is no doubt when calculating whether time periods for notices have been satisfied.

For example you could prescribe “on the third business day after posting unless it is actually delivered earlier”.

Background: contract notices

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