Delivery vs. signature confirmation

  1. I guess I'm a bit confused as to when solely DC is necessary, and when signature confirmation is also required. I've always shipped items with DC, but they've been low value items (usually under $100), so I've never had to consider putting signature confirmation on any package.

    I recently sold an item on eBay for $400 and some change, and since my assumption was that anything over $250 had to be sent via signature confirmation (in case anything should happen in the future, I would be covered), I paid for signature confirmation out of my own pocket. I figured $2 versus a potential $400 loss later was well worth it!

    I sent her a message with the DC for the package, and added that I had purchased signature confirmation for peace of mind on both our ends. Well, she messaged me back and is upset that I had put signature confirmation on her package - she mentions that DC alone would've been fine for my protection, the PO cannot come to her door during the day, and she is not able to get to the PO because she currently doesn't have a ride. Obviously if she cannot pick up the package, it will eventually get shipped back to me.

    She has good feedback, so I'm not worried about her trying to pull a quick one on me, but I don't particularly feel that I was in the wrong for trying to protect myself? If the package does get mailed back, my understanding of her message was that I would have to pay to ship it out to her again, this time without signature confirmation (I'm fine with paying for it if I was "in the wrong" for putting signature confirmation unnecessarily on the package). Any advice on what I should do? How I should go about shipping expensive items in the future?

    (And semi-related, her payment info said that her address was confirmed, but I just checked the shipping label I printed from PayPal, and it says that the address I shipped to is unconfirmed? I printed the label straight from PayPal, and didn't make any changes to her address. Would this be an issue if something happens to the package?)
  2. Yup. You'll lose.

    There is some talk of PayPal relaxing that requirement, but I don't know when it goes into effect.
  3. Was insurance put on the package? When you purchase insurance it automatically requires a signature if it is over $200.

    Here are the policies from the post office:

    An item insured for $200.00 or less receives a delivery scan. An item insured for more than $200.00 receives a delivery scan and the recipient's signature. Delivery of insured mail is subject to 508.1.0, Recipient Options, and 508.2.0, Conditions of Delivery.

    So if you insured the purse for $400 then it would automatically come with signature requirement and in the event of a problem you can pay a small fee to have them track it for you. Delivery confirmation ( most of the time ) only shows when the package was shipped and when it was delivered. There's no signature and a buyer could say, "well if they left it I never got it," and you have no proof of who actually received the package as you do with a signature.

    I'm not sure how much a signature requirement alone helps you. A good question for paypal.

    In my opinion you were NOT in the wrong for requesting a signature confirmation but your money may have been better spent on the insurance because you get protection both ways.

    My suggestion at this point is damage control. If signature requirement presents a problem for her as a buyer then it would be good for her to let people know before they ship her items.

    Your customer service has to kick in here. I encourage you to be just as nice to her as you can be and let her know that you're sorry that this has caused a problem for her and you would have been glad to let it go if you had known. I'd let her know that if they return the purse to you then you'll be glad to pay for the shipping back to her with only delivery confirmation. The only way I'd do this, however, is if she did indeed have very good feedback and wasn't trying to "switch" addresses on you. If you're sending to a confirmed address then you have your protection but Paypal has always informed me that if you send to an unconfirmed address you have ZERO protection.

    So I don't think you were in the "wrong" but it's better to resolve the problem kindly, get her the item, and then move on while protecting your feedback as best you can. Nothing good comes from the tit for tat that many buyers and sellers sometimes get into. I wouldn't blame her or be accusatory. I'd just say, "I'm going to fix this in whatever way is the fastest and easiest for you and I'm sorry for any inconvenience this has caused."

    Unfortunately, the eBay feedback system is skewed and a good name is to be desired more than many riches so protect your name. It will bless you down the road with other buyers that are going to be a bit more responsible.

    Again, I'd double check those addresses. If it's not confirmed and you don't have some proof of delivery then you have no protection. You'll be wise to verify these things with paypal BEFORE you ship and not after.
  4. I think it has already gone into effect, actually. I thought it was in October???

    Anyway, regarding your initial question.

    You know, she could very well be telling the truth, but why would ANY buyer be upset about the seller just taking it a step further to protect their investment? Seems fishy to me. I guess I am very skeptical these days because of all the fraud and crap that goes on.

    That being said, if she is telling the truth and is unable to be there to sign, does she have a neighbor or a family member that could sign for it for her? I think if they're delivering it, maybe they'll leave it with a neighbor? I know UPS and FedEx does that, but I don't have much experience with receiving packages from the PO with SC.

    I'm sorry I couldn't help. Hopefully someone else will have more experience with this sort of thing and can give you better advice.
  5. #5 Nov 25, 2008
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2008
    spiritandtruth - thank you, for putting it eloquently. My intention wasn't to find a way to accuse the seller and blame it on them (although I realize it may have come across this way); rather, I wanted to make sure how to ship high valued items in the future. I was not aware that insurance came with a signature requirement, so you always learn something new. :smile:

    EDIT: Wait, if insurance requires someone to sign for the package, wouldn't that cause the same problem as signature confirmation since she says USPS can't come to her door? Does signature for insurance work the same way as signature confirmation, then? I ask because she had no problems with the fact that I originally intended to ship with DC and insurance...

    The strange thing about the confirmed/unconfirmed situation is that it actually showed up as confirmed in the payment, and only did I check the shipping label transaction in PayPal did it show up as unconfirmed. I checked it against the confirmed address, and it's the exact same address (and should be, since I never manually modified it myself). I'm sure it's a PayPal fluke, but terribly inconvenient for the seller!

    onegirlcreative - I was definitely thinking the same thing as you initially. I suppose, however, that not being able to pick up the package at the PO would be problematic (although I don't understand how/why USPS can't come to her door?). I'll ask her about neighbors, but if worse comes to worse, I'll re-ship it and chalk it up to a lesson learned. Thanks!
  6. This always ticks me off because the only way to ship with tracking and insurance internationally from Canada to outside of North America is through Expresspost, which does NOT offer signature confirmation, only delivery confirmation. So what are we supposed to do?
  7. The signature confirmation is for YOUR protection, so do get it! The "rule" is $250 and over" and they mean this to the penny. . If the p.o. loses the package or if buyer says they did not receive it, PP requires that you have a signature to prove your case. Sorry to inconvenience these buyers, but sellers have to insure for full amount and get signature confirmation. Because if something goes wrong and the buyer does a PP chargeback (even if, say, the package gets lost) the PP funds go back to the BUYER, and you THE SELLER will need the USPS insurance.You will be reimbursed by insurance since you no longer have the bag. Hope this is clear.
  8. They have not relaxed the signature requirement yet.
  9. Exactly. You were in the right to do signature confirmation and I would not send the bag without it.

  10. Our postman will leave the signature card in our box, let us sign it and then deliver the package on one of her next trips- surely she could do something like this by calling her PO and asking.
  11. #11 Nov 25, 2008
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2008
    In order to qualify for PayPal seller's protection for an item worth $250 or more, you must buy Signature Confirmation, not Delivery Confirmation--which is OK for items valued at less than $250. While a signature is required for packages insured for this much (supposedly, you never know what your carrier will do...), it is not trackable online, and PayFoe requires a confirmation that can be tracked online. In addition to the SigConf, you must ship the package within seven days of payment. Seller protection covers you in case of a lost item or an unauthorized payment.

    A confrimed address is no longer a requirement for PayFoe seller's protection; it used to be. Now PayFoe requires confirmed addresses for non-fBay transactions only. It's a good idea to ship to a confirmed address, but it is not necessary in order to be protected.

    With an expensive item, many sellers buy insurance as well, even though the SigConf is supposed to cover the seller if the item gets lost, but PayFoe has been doing crazy things lately, so people buy insurance kuZ better safe than sorry. While the Post Office workers sell the insurance as something you can track, it doesn't quite work that way. The numbers don't work online, and the customer service reps at the USPS' 800# have confirmed that the insurance tracking number is for internal tracking only. To track an item online, one needs Delivery or Sig Confirmation. So insurance does not qualify for PayFoe's seller protection, which in addition to a lost package it covers you if a cc was stolen and an unauthorized payment was made. In such cases, the item has gone to a crook, the payment has come from someone else's cc. The owner of the cc can dispute the charge with the cc company, but what about you? PayFoe seller protection is supposed to protect you in this cases; postal insurance doesn't.

    Some buyers are not available to sign for packages and hate having to go to the Post Office to pick them up. Heck, I don't like making that trip myself. So I state in the listings that the packages will be sent with SigConf (and maybe also insured), so they know ahead of time. I also remind them when I send the "congratulations" email telling them when I will ship the item. She is absolutely wrong that Delivery Confirmation is enough in your case. It isn't because the item and shipping amounted to $250 or more. SigConf is the seller's responsibility, so you will always have to pay for it, not the buyer--same with insurance. And SigConf does not protect the buyer, unless he/she is mailing the package back to the seller.

    She needs to get off her a$$ and pick up the package at the PO. Anyone can get a ride if they want to--perhaps she doen't want the item that bad. She's being a bit of a bully, IMO. If she doesn't pick up the package, it will come back to you. I would not send it back to her since she expects you to do so at your own risk. I would file a mutual withdrawal to get my fees back and send her a bill for the return shipping.
  12. All she has to do is sign the orange USPS card and leave it for the mail man with "please leave at residence" ticked.
    He will then deliver it to her and leave outside her door. I do this sometimes when I don't have time to pick it up.It's just like DC.
    It will then be her risk if it gets stolen but you will have the signature to say it has been delivered so no one loses out.
  13. ^ Actually, if it gets stolen, PayFoe will refund the buyer.
  14. Why am I going throught this same issue right now? It is stated in my auction that I will send package w/ signature confirmation. They win item and now they are like"I didn't know you use signature confirmation,blah,blah,blah". I'm like "what? you did not read my auction?"
    Aggghh!! sorry for the highjack. :smile:
  15. Some people are bullies.