If you sell on eBay or take PayPal for any purchase you may be in for a BIG SURPRISE: 180 day return policy. This may come to a surprise to many, since it was a big surprise to me. I don’t typically read the Policy Updates, and I think most people don’t, I mean for example the iTunes agreement is over 50 pages! In this case, someone pointed this out to me and I think it’s worth posting. Big changes are coming to all eBay & PayPal sellers November 18th. Some of the changes are already in effect for certain sellers. Free return shipping and 180 days to make a claim. Quotes and links below:
Starting September 15, an initial group of sellers, (and after a transition period, all remaining sellers) will be responsible for return shipping on items which are faulty or not-as-described. Source:
But the biggest change is this: “We’re increasing the time for buyers to file a merchandise dispute (Item Not Received and Significantly Not as Described) from 45 days to 180 days.” Source: https://www.paypal.com/us/webapps/mpp/ua/upcoming-policies-full
Here’s a screen shot of what options the seller has when a buyer says it’s not as described: http://i.imgur.com/2eiwq5B.jpg. Note you don’t have any appeal process. Your money is gone, in what way would you like to refund?
If you think about this, it not only opens up the door for people that use an item then for whatever reason decide they don’t want it, it puts in place a 180 day warranty for EVERYTHING. It gives more power to the scammers, which is a big problem already. Related to pinball, you might an item cheaper elsewhere. You might find out the board you bought didn’t fix your problem. You might fix your old board and say the new board didn’t work. A better cheaper repro may come out, or your rare set of something is now being reproduced six months later, and a lot cheaper too. You may run in to hard times and decide to part out that Theatre of Magic, and you’d be better off returning the playfield (didn’t fit), MPU & driver board (didn’t work) and new set of legs, and all at the expense of the seller! And the most common, you just changed your mind and claim “it doesn’t work”.
Those examples are just pinball, but the possibility for misuse here is HUGE because it’s everything. Aside from pinball parts, I’ve sold shoes, PC games, computer stuff, movies, a chainsaw, slide projectors, a car, pinball machines, even deodorant on eBay! Just pick anything and think about how it could or might fail in the future, and now you’re responsible for it for 6 months. What are the chances a pinball machine fails in 6 months. Now guess what? You may very well get to give a full refund AND pay NAVL to bring it back. While that’s an extreme example and I do not know how freight returns would work, it’s very obvious that eBay is no longer wanting the small seller.
One of the reasons given is that certain credit card companies are extending their claim period to 180 days too, but they certainly don’t make it a few mouse clicks and you’ve got your money back. Nor would they force paying return shipping to my knowledge.
To make this worse, you will not get your fees back either! “Your liability will include the full purchase price of the item plus the original shipping cost (and in some cases you may not receive the item back). You will not receive a refund of your PayPal fees.”
Does it get worse? Sure it does. If you’ve insured an item, currently the time to file a claim is 60 to 90 days.
Let’s use a $300 sale on eBay as an example, a brand new item:
$330 total sale. $300 item sold on eBay, shipped insured for $30, you collected $330. Don’t spend it for six months!
-$33 eBay took 10%
-$10 PayPal fees 3%
-$30 Shipping & insurance
-$30 return shipping six months later, and you receive a board back missing paperwork, not properly packed, and damaged or otherwise certainly not new as you sold it. Now you’ve given back a full $330, and have lost $103.
While I agree to the fact I should prove delivery of an item, obviously I disagree about a 180 day period for a buyer to make up his mind if it’s as described or not. It does not matter if you put in your wording no returns or sales final, if they come up with a reason for Not As Described, they will likely win. I have posted on some forums, emailed eBay and PayPal, and I hope many of you will too. I plan on emailing John Donahoe, who is the president and CEO of eBay, and he also has a twitter account. I have also be posted on eBay's and PayPal's Facebook page.
*Speak up sellers, this isn't RIGHT!*