Paypal is holding my $$ hostage for unfounded claim, what to do??

  1. Hi everyone! I've been selling on eBay for a few years with 100% feedback, but I guess there's a first time for everything!! Listen to this ridiculous situation...

    I sold something on eBay to a buyer in the UK, and I'm in the states. I always put in 2 places on my listings that I will ship within 3 business days of cleared payment. I work full time and sometimes it takes me a while to make it to the post office. This buyer paid by paypal on a Wednesday, and I dropped off her package at the post office on Sunday (we have an airport location open 24/7). So, Monday technically would have been my self-imposed 3 business day shipping deadline.

    Well, I didn't check my e-mail all weekend, and on Monday morning, I had 2 e-mails from her wondering why she hadn't received the tracking number from me yet, and she had filed a dispute with paypal at 8 am on Monday morning before I could even reply to her!! I replied to the claim instantly, and provided her with the tracking number, and I even copied and pasted the tracking info from the USPS website.

    She didn't even respond to my messages until today, one week later. All she said was thank you, I'll let you know when it arrives. In the meantime, paypal is holding the money for the item until she physically closes out the claim, otherwise the claim expires in 20 days and I'll get access to the funds (over $400!). I have asked her politely to close out the claim, but she hasn't even addressed my request.

    Does this seem unreasonable to anyone? Is there any way to get paypal to release the funds now that I've provided the tracking number? Otherwise I have to wait another 2 weeks for paypal to close out the claim if she doesn't do it herself. If I was the buyer, I would give the seller (especially an international one) at least a couple weeks before I even inquired about whether they had shipped the item. I certainly wouldn't file a claim when only 3 business days had passed!! Does anyone have any advice for how to deal with this? Thank you!!
  2. Paypal only allows one claim so she is probably holding out in case there is something wrong with the item. I would do the same.

    Although I agree that it was wrong to open a Paypal claim within 3 days of paying.
  3. yep that is true - I would also hold the claim open but to open it so quickly is rather awful. to me it is a last resort, just like a chargeback and not something you just do as quickly as possible. this is exactly what most sellers complain here about - they never had a chance to even address the issue etc. plus, I am sorry, loads of sellers never inform you of the tracking number - so this is just dumb. when you are done and finished I would leave appropriate feedback and I would block her for the future.
  4. I didn't realize you could only file one claim. Maybe it's because I've never filed one, nor had anyone file one against me! Grrrrr!! And that's true that most sellers never contact buyers with the tracking number. I always try to send an e-mail, but sometimes I'm just too busy and by the time I remember, the item has already been delivered. I see it as a failsafe, in case something happens to the package, I'm able to prove I sent it.

    How frustrating. I will certainly block her from future auctions, but I would be nervous about leaving negative feedback. I can just picture this buyer being one to make up some story if she gets negative feedback. I won't get into the problems with the feedback system, that's already been discussed ad nauseum in other threads...
  5. I have to agree, I would also leave the claim open...but she really did jump the gun a bit here, she should have waited a little longer.
  6. It does suck not being able to get to the post office right away but IMHO- of all honest opinions- waiting until Sunday is a pretty long time to wait from the buyers point of view.

    I hope your funds get unlocked quicker than later- $400 is a lot of money especially with gas prices this high!
  7. Once she releases the funds and is happy with the item, I'd leave fb stating this - she may be doing this with other sellers as well.
  8. something's weird. you cant file a claim until 7 days after the auction ends.
  9. I wondered about timescale too, but then thought isn't the 7 day rule in relation to claims with eBay about non-payment? Are there similar rules in relation to Paypal claims? I know there aren't with regard to SNAD claims obviously, but I am not sure about non-arrival.
  10. It's ridiculous to file a claim after 3 days of payment - especially for item from overseas! :push: Hope it works out.
  11. phone up paypal , they are usually very helpful and will tell you exactly what to do .
  12. yikes, i didn't knnow paypal let you file a claim within 3 day of paying? don't they have some kind of requirement that you have to wait at least 1 week of auctino close???
  13. I agree with this. I usually give sellers the benefit of the doubt tho and wait on filing a claim. I've been a seller for a long time, and did it as my sole income for a long time so I often think of things from a seller point of view. I definitely think she was out of line filing that claim.
    Then again, if I've sold stuff I've never not checked my email very often. You do owe it to your customers to be prompt in responding. It is tiring to have to constantly put people at ease, but she did invest $400 with you, as you said, and she deserves great communication.
    If it were me, I'd have emailed her and let her know when to expect a tracking number from me- as well as telling her that you would be a little delayed getting to the post office.
    Good communication prevents these kind of paypal claims. Now you know how to handle situations from here out. I always operate like I presume every customer will file a claim so I go to great measures to prevent that before it could happen. Treat everyone with great care, and you wont have any problems.
    Good luck! There is no way to get that claim closed until her merchandise is received, so just relax and wait it out.
  14. It's not actually a "claim" per se. After researching this more, I've learned you can file a "dispute" with Paypal for whatever reason as soon as you have paid. The seller and buyer then have to communicate by posting messages on Paypal's dispute resolution board for that dispute. If you work it out, the person who filed the dispute can choose to close it, and the seller gains access to the funds. If you can't work it out, the filer can choose to escalate it to official claim status within 20 days. If they do nothing, it closes out automatically. If the dispute is escalated to claim status, then Paypal makes the final determination of who wins. If they would decide against the seller, they automatically refund the money to the buyer and the seller can't do anything about it.

    Well, at this point, I have had a few more conversations with the buyer, and it turns out she has been scammed a couple times and was just paranoid. She said she will close out the dispute as soon as the item is received. Now I can only hope the post office actually delivers it on time, as I've been having problems with international shipments too!

    I understand your point, Frozen_Alaska, that waiting til Sunday to ship when the buyer paid on Wednesday seems like a long time. Maybe it would be, except that I clearly state on my listings to allow me that time, so the buyer knows what they're getting into. I've bought tons of stuff on ebay, and I would estimate that maybe 25% of the sellers ever contacted me at all, to give me the tracking number or anything. Most sellers just ship the item and be done with it. I agree that in an ideal world, it would be nice to communicate with everybody, but it just doesn't happen. I am just frustrated because the one time I don't manage to get to the post office the next day, and the one time I'm not able to check my e-mail, the buyer goes nutzo on me!! Thank you all for your help, and I will wait patiently and try to be a better seller next time:smile:
  15. Exactly what I was thinking...