In February I sold a network router on eBay for £249. The UK-based buyer paid via PayPal and I promptly sent out the parcel by courier, with compensation cover if it failed to arrive.
Shortly afterwards, the buyer raised a return request stating the courier had left the parcel outside in the rain all day and it was water-damaged. I requested additional information and photos, but nothing arrived.
However, the courier, DPD, sent me photos taken by its driver of a note saying “Please leave parcel in car”, and a photo of the parcel they had left in the car.
I passed this on to the buyer, but this didn’t stop him filing a claim to eBay, which immediately sided with him. It has insisted I refund him the £249.
I have sent eBay the photos and made the point that the buyer had been caught providing false information, and that they were protecting a fraudulent buyer.
The company has ignored this and I’ve lost my router and £249. I feel very badly treated and, as a result, I am not going to sell on eBay again. It is less about the money and more about the stress of dealing with dishonest people. This whole episode has really upset me.
CG, via email
This is a massive problem with eBay – as we have previously highlighted – and, in short, the seller protections designed to stop this happening often do not work.
In cases like this, eBay invariably sides with the buyer – even in the face of clear evidence like yours. Fraudsters know this and use it to their advantage.
Given the circumstances, we asked eBay to take a second look, and happily it has now agreed that you were treated badly. It seems the buyer had done this several times, and for this reason the account has been suspended. You get to keep the £249, and eBay will also refund you almost £25 in fees paid as a gesture of goodwill. It says cases like yours are very rare.
The problem is that it is very difficult for sellers to protect themselves. Many are now insisting on pick-up in person, with cash paid on collection – which is arguably the only way to go if you are selling something valuable.
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