I have a story for you that should alert all sellers about the complete and total dishonesty and corruption that is the norm for eBay.
I am a Top Rated seller with 100% positive feedback. Two weeks ago I sold an antique spinning wheel and shipped it via Fed Ex to a buyer in CT. The buyer had over 200 feedback.
I received a message from the buyer that he hadn't received it and I explained that signature confirmation was required since it was such a large box and considering all of the recent thefts of packages.
The buyer was furious that he had to sign for the package and was rude and unreasonable which gave me the impression that he was maybe an experienced fraud.
After Fed Ex tried for 6 days in a row to deliver the package to the address provided by the buyer, which was the address of a closed business, the buyer finally called Fed Ex and refused the package.
The buyer then called eBay immediately and wanted a refund but the tracking said that Fed Ex was going to attempt delivery of the package that very day. I then noticed that the transaction was removed from my "paid and shipped" queue to my "waiting for payment" queue, which to me indicated that they gave the buyer a refund.
I then called eBay and asked them why they gave the buyer a refund when the package was literally at his front door and eBay told me straight out that they gave the buyer a "courtesy refund" and that I didn't have to worry about it.
I even went so far as to ask what I should do if the package was returned to me and the eBay rep said that I could do whatever I wanted with it because it was a "courtesy refund" given by eBay in order to satisfy the buyer, who incidentally at that point had deactivated his entire eBay account after I left negative words in his positive feedback. I straight out asked the EBay customer service rep if I was allowed to resell the spinning wheel if I ever did receive it back and the eBay rep said yes that I could resell it if I wished.
After a week passed I received the spinning wheel back from Fed Ex and I relisted it and sold it again to a happy customer. Right after I received the positive feedback from the last customer I noticed that there was $132 taken out of my PayPal account for the original buyer of the spinning wheel in CT. I called PayPal who connected to eBay for a 3-way call.
I explained it all to them and was then put on hold by the EBay rep. I waited on hold for over 1 hour (the total call was over 2 hours long at that point) so I hung up because I didn't have all day. It is clear to me now that eBay purposely put me on hold never having the intention of ever reconnecting with me.
I contacted the original buyer via email and told him that it was theft to collect two refunds for the same item and he responded that he had never received even ONE refund from eBay or PayPal and that he had documentation of the entire situation.
I was shocked so I called PayPal and they told me that there was never a "courtesy refund" ever given from eBay to the original CT buyer. Apparently after the original CT buyer was refused a refund from eBay he had filed a claim of "unauthorized transaction" and when PayPal saw in the tracking that I had received the package back, they automatically gave the refund to the buyer.
Logically PayPal explained that "it's either the merchandise or the money, but not both", which I totally understood, but had I known that there was never a "courtesy refund" given by eBay I would have most certainly asked more for the spinning wheel for the second transaction to make up for my shipping losses incurred for the first transaction with the CT buyer. But after reselling it for the same cost and slight loss in shipping cost I ended up gaining nothing after two sales and eBay is clean of any responsibility. What a dirty rotten company EBay is and I am shocked at their blatant abuse and corruption which in my opinion is illegal.
So simply put, eBay lied to me by saying that they gave the buyer a "courtesy refund" when they did not. eBay was banking on the fact that once I received the package back that PayPal would then refund the original buyer because of that claim that the buyer filed.
I don't blame the buyer for wanting his money back since he never did receive the package, but the point is that eBay totally lied and manipulated the entire situation and then put me on permanent hold when I tried to clear it up. eBay acted like they did the right thing by telling me they gave the buyer a "courtesy refund" when they did not and they blatantly lied to me about it.
eBay was also counting on the fact that I did not record that telephone conversation when they told me that they issued a "courtesy refund" and that I could resell the item once I got it back.
I say to all sellers, find a way to start recording ALL of your conversations with this dirty company and I am done with eBay for good. How can I run an honest business working with such dishonest and nasty corrupt people? I cannot and will not.
This is the last straw for me and believe me there were many straws before this but none as blatantly dirty. eBay is nothing but a fraud and I will be glad to jump on any lawsuit bandwagon because I have seen and experienced things at eBay that have made me feel like I live in a third world country or the "Wild West."
This company is the most despicable that I have ever seen and if I had not experienced their corruption firsthand I would have never believed it because it is so outrageous.