eBay is susscessful, no doubt. However, it's customer service and in particular the 'money back guarantee' really sucks. Other ecommerce sites could do well to learn from the tragedy that is eBay and do a better job. I've been an eBay user since 2001, and for the first time needed to claim under the money back guarantee. Item from Ukraine showed as delivered by Royal Mail tracking, but not to me or even to my address. In fact the tracking clearly states it was delivered in a postal district some six miles away from me (in the UK). Suposedly signed for by 'NEXT' (which is a shop in the district six miles away) by someone with a name nothing like mine. According to eBay resolution centre this is enough proof that it was delivered to me, and my case was closed. I have appealed, and eBay now wants a formal letter from the courier stating it was delivered to the wrong address. Something it is impossible for me to provide as Royal Mail won't talk to me as I'm the recipient, not the sender who it has the contract with. I've pointed them to the Royal Mail FAQ which states this, and pointed out not only the tracking document evidence, but also that the sender originally agreed it had gone missing and is pursuing a claim with Urkiane post (so she gets my money and comepnsation by the looks of it). There's also the fact that when the parcel was obviously lost, and the seller agreed so, I then pruchased the same item from somewhere else - hardly the act of someone trying it on. If this apeal fails, as looks likely so far, I'm going to take eBay to court for breach of contract which should befun. In the meantime, don't buy from eBay as it offers you ZERO real world protection...

My only ebay buy was for a pair of cooktop inserts. Our house had this cooktop with replaceable burner units. Only one burner would light and the other side had a grill unit. Shame but spares are not available in the shops or maker's site. Ebay it is and it all worked out for a fraction of the cost to install a new cooktop.

My view is many Ebay purchases are gambles. I won this time.

PS. For me, ebay is my shop of last resort. Not a place I will use often.

I'm a frequent eBayer and in all the years of buying I've only been stung once, a long time ago, and stupidly I used nochex instead of PayPal and couldn't even trace the scammer.

Now I only buy expensive things (more than say £20) from UK based sellers with excellent feedback. Yes there's still some risk, but there's also reward and you can pick up some amazing deals.

I've been using eBay since 2001. This was my first claim on the money back guarantee, yet eBay is treating me like I'm attempting to defraud the company. I only purchased from this seller as the money back thing meant it was no risk. Wasn't her fault, she sent the item but the postal service delivered it to the wrong place. However, it should be her responsibility - she can claim from the postal service, I cannot. I should be able to claim from eBay as it's pretty straightforward - except eBay appears to not want to pay out under any circumstances, even the most blindingly obvious ones. I won't be giving it my custom any more (after 17 years of use) and I will be advising my readers across various publications to do likewise.

@happygeek. Long ago in a job where I did receiving for a company I had to deal with damaged and sometimes lost shipments. You learn real fast who to pin the blame on so I share without reserve.

When the seller ships, responsibility transitions to the carrier so if a shipment arrives damaged I would have to option to deny delivery or if the damage was found later, file a claim with the carrier. Yes, yes, ebay is full of scammers that ship bad stuff but here I'm sharing the everyday story of a store that would receive goods from vendors many times a day.

As to lost, it rarely happened but when it did the carrier was on the hook for the loss. Since I never received it our accounts payable would not pay (so much for Ebay's method.) So when they seller came calling for payment we would point them to the carrier to show proof of delivery which would always show they lost it or delivered it to the wrong store.

So your claim may not be against Ebay but the carrier. And yes, I wish you luck here. It's a shame Ebay paid the seller since in the old normal system they would not be paid and the seller would file against the carrier.

In around 1500 transactions on ebay I have had quite a few problems with customers.
There was only one big failure when i sold some gear for £50.
The buyer said he wasnt happy so I refunded him straight away.
For some reason he got upset and sent back a piece of wood with nails in it !
So he kept the item, got a refund and left me negative feedback.
Most transactions go through ok but i would never sell anything I couldnt afford to lose.

As for buying I keep away from Chinese sellers, its most cheap junk they sell.
I ordered some flash drives and after 2 months they hadnt arrived so I got a refund.
After 3 months they did arrive bit none worked. So once bit twice shy.

The claim is most certainly against eBay as the 'money back guarantee' states that if an item is not delivered your money will be refunded, simple as. Breach of contract. Also, in the UK, the buyer has no contract with the courier but with the vendor. In the case of a lost package the buyer claims against the seller, the seller claims against the courier.

However, it appears that slagging eBay off, with details, on Twitter did the trick. Someone from eBay US (not UK) got in touch via PM and said they would investigate. Within 12 hours the decision not to refund was overturned and the case found in my favour.

Rules of commerce/trade are not as clear today. If Ebay refunds then they get to go after (or not worth it to do the work) but with all the shipping Ebay does they have the power to tell the carrier to refund. Anyway, glad it appears to be sorted.

Yes, eBay REALLY!! Sucks.

You think you can sue eBay?

Read on!! First you have to find whom to sue and in what country and under what trade agreement. They have different departments registered in Ireland and others in Luxembourg. Their setup is so convoluted that you will be better advised to sue Harvey the Rabbit.

If you read their Terms and Conditions they chopped off both your legs and your arms the second you accepted to become a member of “The eBay community”!

Ebay not only stings the buyers, they sting the seller too, so badly that I am surprised sellers and buyers continue to join eBay.

I was never a seller, strictly a £4 average happy buyer of junk, always paid with PayPal straight away at the end of the auction or “Buy now” and never had any real issues to worry about. Never had to give negative feedback or receive any from anyone. One day, out of the blue eBay decided to suspend my account “You are in breach of OFAC rules” and they asked me for a copy of my passport picture page, my signature, driver’s license with photo id. The account will remain suspended until you comply but eventually it will be permanently blocked if you don’t. I refused to provide such sensitive information but as a UK buyer that always paid what was asked and had nothing to hide I was concerned why a foreign company would ask for all this information. I examined the last two transactions -one was for a silicon spoon worth £1.25 and the last was a brass attachment for my garden hose worth £0.99. How does this breach OFAC (United States Office of Foreign Asset Control)
could it be that the US needed the brass for bullets or something?? What about the spoon??

After almost a year of chats, emails and phone calls to eBay customer services requesting they explain why they have taken this action and since when this was a global policy, their response remained, you have to comply with our request for the documentation. I drafted a letter of complaint and posted it recorded delivery to the customer services manager in Ireland stating that under the freedom of information act they had to provide what information they held on record about my account or me to try to ascertain how I was in breach of OFAC, they decline to comply.
I then raised a complaint with the ICO (Information Commissioner’s Office) an organisation that supposedly safeguards our rights and data integrity…. What a total waste of time!!

The ICO’s response was “Show the documents if you want or don’t, they don’t have to give you any information or let you use their site”. Further communication to the ICOs regarding eBay’s disregard of my rights to information under the data protection act, did not receive a response.

Finally the penny dropped. eBay can do anything they want with your account or your data. They can post it, store it for as long as they want and in any country of their choosing, share it with whom they like, accuse you of anything they like without having to offer any proof, they can ban you and there is nothing you can do about it, certainly the ICO is not going to do anything for you.
The new GDPR will? Don’t get me going!!

The happy ending is that after closing my eBay account, I have happily moved to Amazon, apparently they don’t care what I look like!! Happily too I found many of the sellers I was using on eBay, selling pretty much at the same prices and with free post from all over the UK, Europe and China. All items are guaranteed and brand new.
There is a happier life after eBay. Good riddance!!
Depending on how you look at it the only negative point is that apparently anyone at the same delivery addres will be banned fron using eBay, who cares!!

Yes. I suspect that if I opened a small claims court case against eBay UK for breach of contract on the specific issue of the money back guarantee that I would have won. Indeed, I doubt that eBay would even have turned up in court. The evidence was such that the magistrate would have ruled in my favour without doubt.

Funnily enough, after I tweeted a couple of times about the lousy money back promise and being ripped off by eBay, someone from eBay support messaged me asking for details. Within 12 hours of this my moeny was refunded in full, even before the official case appeal verdict was returned. There followed a flurry of emails and messages from multiple parts of the eBay machine - all apologising and confirming that the case decision had been overturned and my money refunded. So, it would appear, the best way to deal with eBay is social media shaming. Which in itself is pants, it should employ people who can actually read documents in context and not just checkbox tickers in the case-handling operation (outsourced to a country where English isn't the first language I hasten to add, which doesn;t help when context is important) and apply a little common sense in the decision making process.