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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
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I have a complaint about e-bay. I sold an item and in my listing

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I have a complaint about e-bay. I sold an item and in my listing I offered Standard first class postage and the buyer paid me £3.30. I posted this item which cost me £3.35 for that exact service and got proof of posting. This postage does not carry tracking or insurance. The buyer then reported that she had not received the item and without asking me for details e-bay have refunded the total cost of the dress and postage to the buyer. In addition, e-bay are charging me for £6 for advertising. The buyer cannot prove that she hasn't received the item because she wouldn't have had to sign for it. I believe I fulfilled all of my contractual duties because priority mail was neither requested by the buyer or paid for.
Thank you.
Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. Did you use tracked postage?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No because it would have cost more and in my listing I offered first class standard post at £3.30. The buyer was happy with that and it says first class standard post on my proof of postage. She never requested that she wanted it posted with tracking and insurance which would have cost more.
Hi, the issue with using ebay is that when you do so and list on there, any disputes are resolved under ebay’s own terms and conditions, rather than the normal rules of contract law. In effect by using their site you agree to be governed by that site’s own terms of use and in the event of a dispute they will be the relevant ones, rather than what you may enjoy in usual circumstances elsewhere or under law. When it comes to disputes for items not received the terms state: “If sellers post the item within their stated handling time and provide a valid proof of delivery for the item, eBay is likely to decide in their favour. ‘Proof of delivery’ is online documentation from a postal company that includes all of the following:A status of “delivered” (or equivalent in the country to which the item was delivered) and the date of delivery.The recipient’s address, showing at least the city/county or postcode (or international equivalent).Signature Confirmation for transactions that total £750 or more.” So regardless of what delivery options you had and what he buyer chose, you will still be taking a risk by not sending it via a method which offers proof of delivery. Therefore, to fully protect yourself you should have sent the item via tracked delivery with proof of delivery available and that is regardless of what service the buyer selected and paid for. None of this prevents you from taking the matter further through ebay’s own appeal process or even through the small claims court if needed. This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the steps you need to take should you decide to take the matter down the legal route, which I wish to discuss so please take a second to leave a positive rating for the service so far (by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars) and I can continue with that and answer any further questions you may have. Don’t worry, there I no extra cost and leaving a rating will not close the question and we can continue this discussion. Thank you
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Thank you. Whenever a dispute arises over money owed by one party to another, the debtor can be pursued through the civil courts for recovery of the debt. As legal action should always be seen as a last resort, there are certain actions that should be taken initially to try and resolve this matter informally and without having to involve the courts. It is recommended that the process follows these steps: 1. Reminder letter – if no reminders have been sent yet, one should be sent first to allow the debtor to voluntarily pay what is due. 2. Letter before action – if informal reminders have been sent but these have been ignored, the debtor must be sent a formal letter asking them to repay the debt, or at least make arrangements for its repayment, within a specified period of time. A reasonable period to demand a response by would be 10 days. They should be advised that if they fail to do contact you in order to resolve this matter, formal legal proceedings will be commenced to recover the debt. This letter serves as a ‘final warning’ and gives the other side the opportunity to resolve this matter without the need for legal action. 3. If they fail to pay or at least make contact to try and resolve this, formal legal proceedings can be initiated. A claim can be commenced online by going to Once the claim form is completed it will be sent to the debtor and they will have a limited time to defend it. If they are aware legal proceedings have commenced it could also prompt them to reconsider their position and perhaps force them to contact you to try and resolve this. Whatever correspondence is sent, it is always advisable to keep copies and use recorded delivery so that there is proof of delivery and a paper trail. The court may need to refer to these if it gets that far.