Help: Buyer claims item arrived damage?

  1. #1 Sep 21, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2012
    I have a problem with a difficult buyer, and I'm hoping that some of your lovely ladies will be able to help or provide some perspective on this issue. I sold a heavy silver beaded necklace which the buyer received today. He contacted me 30 minutes after delivery (delivery time according to USPS tracking) to claim that the chain was broken, and he would need to have the necklace restrung for $20. Normally, I am a fair minded person, who likes to give people the benefit of the doubt, but I have an uneasy feeling about this.

    First, I had already received an earlier rude message from the buyer about the handling time. The auction ended midday Friday; he paid Friday evening (after post offices had closed). Due to out of to out of town family obligations (sick parent, etc), I was not able to get to the post office until Tuesday morning, which does fall within the 3 business day handling. I apologized for any inconvenience, politely explaining this unexpected set of events and that I mailed the items as soon as I was able and was still within the stated handling time. I received no reply to that response.

    Second, I had carefully checked over the entire necklace before shipment. I had actually specially checked the chain since another person had asked me specifically about the chain and whether or not she'd be able to shorten it. Everything was in perfect condition. I packed the necklace in a plastic ziplock bag, then bubble wrap into a velvet lined/padded jewelry box with outer box, and finally all that into a larger box, mailing it priority mail. The necklace had a fairly thick, sturdy silver chain. It seems very very odd that it could have broken with that much padding, especially since I've owned it for several years and it's survived moves with much less padding.

    I don't know if it is just me, but timing and immediate declaration of cost seems suspect? I asked the buyer for pictures and suggested that perhaps we should agree just for him to return the item. Obviously he's not happy with this transaction, and I would rather not drag this out with him. I do understand that there is always a chance that the necklace was damaged in transit, but I am afraid that he will or has damaged the necklace on purpose. Is there anything I can do to protect myself? Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Since you packed it so well, ask for photos of the box - see if that is crushed in anyway. If they don't send those photos, I'd lean toward the buyer having buyer's remorse. Don't offer a partial refund - have them send the necklace back to you.
     
  3. Of course the SOB could be claiming that she sent the chain in a damaged condition :nono:

    I agree to just have him return it.

    Did you check his fb left (not just on ToolHaus) and his recent purchases? Sometimes that helps you see what you are dealing with.

    Good luck!
     
  4. This buyer seems to be buying a lot of silver items, mostly southwestern pieces; I'm guessing for resale, judging by the quantity and the feedback he's left. The feedback he received has been all positive, which is not surprising given that he only buys, but he has left negative feedback like the following:
    "If you refuse a return you deserve one of these. I except returns for any reason" (Seller replies "LISTED CLEARLY WITH ITEM,NO RETURNS,I GAVE CLEAR PICTURES AND ACCURATE DETAILS"; Buyer replies: "YOU WILL BE TAKING YOUR CHANCES HERE. RUDE! WOULD NEVER BUY ANYTHING HERE")
    "NONDISCLOSURE OF SCRATCHES ON IMAGE REFUSED TO REFUND SHIPPING BAD APPLE!!!!!!"
    "If you refuse a return you deserve one of these. I except returns for any reason" (Seller replies: "The item was fragile basket and was sold with a no return policy clearly stated." Buyer replies: "No return policy is a rip This a PICTURE Are trying to get over on people??????")

    Actually, there are several other feedback given along those veins: this buyer comments about seller not allowing a return (or in the case of that second message, allowed return but only refunded cost of item, not original shipping), seller comments that auction states that no returns are allowed, buyer responds with some sort of remark about the seller being rude or trying to take advantage of people. Good grief! Of course I don't know the exact details in those cases, and I'm not against people leaving negative feedback if it is warranted. It just seems that some of his comments are just rather unnecessary. It IS the seller's prerogative whether or not to accept returns, not to mention, you don't have to buy/bid if you don't like the "no returns" policy!

    Perhaps I am being too presumptuous but given the sturdiness of the chain and how I packed the item, I find it super hard to believe that it could have been damaged in the mail. I think he's trying get a partial refund (the $20 he claims is needed to restring the necklace) - he didn't sound like he wanted, or at least he didn't mention , a return in his message, which I am assuming he would have if he wanted one (going by his feedback left, he obviously has no problem asking for one). I had clearly stated that no returns were accepted, but with this guy, I'd rather accept the return and just resell the necklace than deal with him.

    My question is, if he had (deliberately or otherwise) damaged the necklace and returns it, is it possible for me to file a claim anywhere or am I just out of luck? Is it just going to be a case of he said, she said? It'll be a lot harder to try to resell it if it is damaged, but moreover, it's just not right (yes, I do realize life's not fair, but I try to live in hope).
     
  5. Hi, I agree with a full refund (remind him to pay for return postage ) and he to mail you back the chain. Buyer seems so difficult...
     
  6. I'd ask this buyer to just return the necklace & upon inspection the refund will be processed and I would also want pics of the crushed box

    I would also contact ebay to see what their thoughts are.. the buyer seems
    to have a pattern of doing unfair things to sellers, perhaps they would side with
    you about a charge for having the necklace repaired..

    If you don't ask, you won't know...
     
  7. Thanks for the input everyone! I have offered him the option of returning the necklace for a refund from the start, but he has either claimed either to "not know how to proceed" at the beginning to now "still thinking about whether [he] want to spend the $$ to fix it" because he "likes the beads." He follows that statement by claiming I'd need to pay to fix it if he returned it. I don't know how to make the options of either keeping the necklace or returning it any more clear to him. He doesn't seem to like either the option of keeping it or returning it. It is rather ironic given the negative feedback he's left because sellers have refused to allow him to return items (even if it was stated in their auction). Is there any deadline for him to make up his mind about whether or not he wants to? I know that there is 45 days to file a claim...is that the same for returning an item? I don't have a problem if he decides to return, but I don't want to drag this out and have him decide to return it a month from now.

    Under different circumstances, I might be tempted to give in and offer to pay for the repair, but everything has been rather suspect. After long drawn out excuses and delays, he sent me 2 very blurry photographs of a broken necklace chain but no pictures of the box, which when asked, he claims is in "perfect condition." In the same message, he claims the chain must have broken in a jolt when the box was thrown around...what? It makes no sense, but I've stopped trying to understand it. I would just like him to make up his mind. Does anyone have any suggestions in that regard?
     
  8. Don't give in. Buyer either returns it or keeps it. No partials.
     
  9. Yup ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^


    I had a partial fisher once. I called her bluff and offered to pay the return shipping plus her original. she wouldn't have been out a cent. She still refused to return the item and kept whining for a partial. She never got her partial and she never returned the item.

    Either cease communicating with him or just keep repeating the same thing---return for a full refund.
     
  10. I've already reiterated the keep or return to him until I feel blue in the face, so I've decided to stop communicating with him until he tells me one way or the other (I'm assuming a no answer on his end means he's decided to keep the item). I'd like to know if there is a limit to how late a buyer can return an item. I've searched online, and so far, I've read 7 days, 45 days, 60 days...anyone know for certain?
     
  11. The buyer has a 45 day time frame to file a claim with ebay/paypal for a SNAD..

    The buyer may also have a longer period of time if he files a chargeback with his
    credit card.. Every card has a different amount of time .. some have 60 days
    some have 90 days some may have more time

    At this point, since he is so indecisive about what he wants, just wait to hear from
    him

    You have offered to take it back .. he has to decide now..
     
  12. when I sell necklaces I always bubble wrap the necklace itself to separate the chain, silver is actually very soft as my mom was a jewlery maniac and love to make them, mainly sterling silver. (and I assure you it does not cost $20 to repair, he could do it himself with two pairs of pliers) I hope the nasty buyer didn't harm it on purpose. have him return it, as soon as you issue refund and cancel transaction, he won't be able to leave you feedbacks!
     
  13. He's fishing for a partial refund. Don't give up and he'll become relentless. Like others said, ask for pics. That will probably make him go away if he's lying.
     
  14. The OP asked for pictures and stated that she received two blurry photos of the item in return, but none of the box it was shipped in.
     
  15. To me it sounds like the buyer is FOS...

    If the item arrived broken, how difficult is it to take a clear picture
    to forward to the seller..

    After all, if it is legitimately broken, the picture will speak on its own behalf..