confused by a buyer asking me to mark as a gift

erinmiyu

queen of kitsch
Jun 29, 2007
3,028
0
over the hills and far away
so a 0 feedback buyer won a pair of shoes i had up for sale on ebay. they paid two days later, then sent me a message asking me to mark the item as a gift. i start to see flags, so i checked the address given on paypal and it's a US address (confirmed).

i told them i will not put an invoice in the package, and there are no customs forms to be declared since it is being mailed in the US from the US.

i got back this email:

"Thank you for your prompt response. I'm still used to Amazon when they send something packaged as a gift that they put a receipt in there saying gift and they zero out receipt. I checked with a family member bc I am shipping this as a gift to someone who lives internationally and was told that they will need a receipt indicating that it is a gift. I'm still learning how it all works, oh well. The mailing address is correct.... "

i emailed the buyer again expressing confusion and that this is not being mailed internationally by me and the only place i DO have to declare value is for insurance, to protect myself in case the package gets lost.

i haven't heard back on that email yet, but is there something i'm missing here? the package is going to florida and the ebay user is registered in the US.
 

jellyv

O.G.
Mar 29, 2006
8,655
6,218
She has confused what you need to do with what she intends to do later on, in shipping internationally. Of course, you will send the shoes per US shipping to a US address, per your own terms.

I'd probably just send a short followup helping her see that what happens between you and her in terms of shipping is completely separate from anything she will do when remailing elsewhere.

 

missD

O.G.
May 29, 2006
3,284
1,506
She wants a receipt from you indicating that the goods are of 0 value so when she ships it abroad, she can include it in the package in case customs opens it. I would not get involved, just say the only receipt you can print out is one from paypal which fully indicates the value of the merchandise. Plus say that you cannot do that if you plan on shipping to her with insurance.

Just tell her to make a receipt herself as SHE is the one mailing it off and from HER to HER friend, it is a gift of NO value.
 

marie-lou

Chocolate Heaven
O.G.
Dec 6, 2006
5,744
3
N 50° 53' E 04° 20'
I agree with the others, she must be confused. Marking it as a gift will make NO difference at all for this transaction. If she wants to send it abroad she can declare it as whatever she wants (although that would be a stupid idea in every way if it is not really a gift).
 

northerndancer

What, me worry?
O.G.
Dec 30, 2007
5,070
684
The Cool Cool North
It may legitimately be a gift when the buyer sends it on to its final destination internationally (i.e. from the buyer to whoever she is sending it to). But she doesn't need anything from the OP. The buyer is going to have to re-address it and fill out the customs label.

I am curious though, there must be places where marking as gift makes a significant difference for the purposes of customs. It doesn't in the US or Canada but does anybody know where it might?
 

marie-lou

Chocolate Heaven
O.G.
Dec 6, 2006
5,744
3
N 50° 53' E 04° 20'
^^It used to make a difference when sending to Belgium (and I am guessing other European countries too) but I looked it up and they changed the rules and now it makes absolutely no difference. (It would have been naive to think customs would not change their rules when probably everyone was doing it...)
 

Dimple

O.G.
Jun 1, 2006
925
33
Au
I agree with the others, she must be confused. Marking it as a gift will make NO difference at all for this transaction. If she wants to send it abroad she can declare it as whatever she wants (although that would be a stupid idea in every way if it is not really a gift).
It makes a difference when its sent to Australia. Anything over the value of $AU1000 will incur about a 20% fee on top of the value of the item (Goods and Servies tax and custom).
 

vanilje

Member
Oct 28, 2010
4,752
0
Norway
It may legitimately be a gift when the buyer sends it on to its final destination internationally (i.e. from the buyer to whoever she is sending it to). But she doesn't need anything from the OP. The buyer is going to have to re-address it and fill out the customs label.

I am curious though, there must be places where marking as gift makes a significant difference for the purposes of customs. It doesn't in the US or Canada but does anybody know where it might?
It makes a difference here in Norway. Norwegian customs duty is 25% on everything that has a value over 200NOK/ $33. Gifts can have the value up to 1000NOK/ $160 without having to pay duty. Anyway - I am always prepared to pay customs duty when buying from abroad, but it makes me very happy if the seller puts "givaway" or gift or lower the value of the item.
 

thepoppet

wind sylph
Jul 25, 2010
3,217
6
Upon a Zephyr High
I think the issues is that she doesn't intend to rebox it. I think she intends on taking the box, as is, and just applying a different shipping label on it and marking it as a gift. Therefore, if customs chooses to open the box, she's worried about any receipt you may have included in it.

Either way, just tell her your sending it how you normally send it to buyers. She can easily open it and retape it before sending to retrieve any receipt info.
 

northerndancer

What, me worry?
O.G.
Dec 30, 2007
5,070
684
The Cool Cool North
It makes a difference when its sent to Australia. Anything over the value of $AU1000 will incur about a 20% fee on top of the value of the item (Goods and Servies tax and custom).
I think your $AU1000 limit is irrespective of whether a gift or not (right Dimple?). You folks in Australia are so lucky to have such a high threshold before duties apply.
 

northerndancer

What, me worry?
O.G.
Dec 30, 2007
5,070
684
The Cool Cool North
^^It used to make a difference when sending to Belgium (and I am guessing other European countries too) but I looked it up and they changed the rules and now it makes absolutely no difference. (It would have been naive to think customs would not change their rules when probably everyone was doing it...)
I'm sure you are right. I expect customs officials in every country have bigger things to go after about than chasing down whether or not an item is really a gift. :P
 

ejbfelton

Member
Apr 30, 2007
389
1
It is against U.S. Federal law to lie on a custom form, period. Sellers on Ebay are now supposed to state in their listings that they will not do this. If the buyer leaves negative feedback based on the seller refusing to lie for them, Ebay will remove the feedback.

Stop asking Americans to cheat your country's tax laws.
 

ms-whitney

shopaholic
Sep 6, 2006
5,935
5
It is against U.S. Federal law to lie on a custom form, period. Sellers on Ebay are now supposed to state in their listings that they will not do this. If the buyer leaves negative feedback based on the seller refusing to lie for them, Ebay will remove the feedback.

Stop asking Americans to cheat your country's tax laws.
??

i don't see what difference it would make whether you mark it as gift or not, because most places would charge customs regardless after a dollar value no? so its undervaluing or not, that makes more of a difference..

i had an item sent from japan, a retail store, and they marked it as gift but declared the full price (w/o me asking to mark as gift btw, i brought from them as i would with an american site)

and i didn't get charged extra but i think its because it was under an x amount.