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Dealing with eBay's non-paying bidders


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I've been having increasing problems with non-paying bidders on my eBay auctions recently, and I'm wondering what the best course of action to take is. I know that I can reclaim the final value fees, but I'm still out anything up to £10 on the listing fees - a figure I simply can't afford to risk when almost 30% of my sales are going unpaid.

 

I keep hearing that eBay bids are legally binding, but I have yet to find any information on exactly what rights and responsibilities the buyer and seller have, and what regulations it is bound by. I know it's probably not worth taking legal action on anything other than the most expensive of items, but nonetheless I'd like to know what options are open to me. Thanks all.

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I sypathise totally with you,just last Sunday i sold my van on E-Bay,the conditions being that the winning bidder paid a £50 deposit by Paypal within 12 hours and pick up was made within 3 days,well the obvious happened - no deposit and no contact whatsoever (well there was a bit of contact when he cancelled my Paypal money request that i sent him!!)

I am seriously thinking of downloading the County Court forms from the internet,filling them in with the details of my claim,albeit it would only be for the listing fee and final value fee which should be around £35 BUT its the pricipal of it rather than the money.I may find the County Court papers are enough to scare him into paying the sum its cost me.

Why don't you try something like that?.A filled in CCJ form generally gives people the Willies - we'll see.:)

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I've yet to see any evidence of eBay's assertion that bids a 'legally binding'. This may be the case in a formal auction, but eBay's electronic version isn't covered in this way.

 

For those times the deal goes south, eBay have cancelled the FVF (Final Value Fees) and whilst not crediting the listing fee, allowed a re-listing free of additional charge.

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Thanks for the replies. That's actually a very good point that I hadn't thought of, buzby - I've emailed eBay asking if they could provide me with some further information about the legal status of bids placed (although I don't hold out too much hope, thanks to previous encounters with their customer service dept.). At the very least I would hope that if it's not actually true, they'll stop plastering it all over their help pages.

 

I do appreciate the fact that they refund final value fees, but the free relisting only relates to the insertion fee - meaning expensive extras (featured, at £9.95, for example) are just sunk costs. For the moment I've just stopped paying for any extras, but lack of visibility is a problem and I don't like being forced into a corner by people who are breaking the terms of service and possibly contract law as well, hence my desire to do something about it.

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it's sometimes a possibilty to offer the item to the underbidder.

 

 

HSBC WON three times!!!!! Read about my continuing battle (claim FOUR!) Link HERE

Capital One WON Link

HERE

GE capital (5 accounts) WON link HERE

Lloyds bank account WON second claim starting! link HERE

Budget insurance cough up WON link HERE

Principles WON link HERE

A&L (Mrs Crusher's account) claim link HERE

Barclays claim link HERE

 

Any advice given is on an informal basis only and without prejudice or liability. In in any doubt, consult a qualified lawyer.

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HSBC is right, second chance offers can be offered to anyone who bid on the item and are free (though a FVF will apply if they accept the offer)

All my posts are made without prejudice and may not be reused or reproduced without my express permission (or the permission of the forums owners)!

 

17/10/2006 Recieve claim against me from lloyds TSB for £312.82

18/10/06 S.A.R - (Subject Access Request) sent

03/02/07 Claim allocated to small claims. Hearing set for 15/05/07. Lloyds ordered to file statement setting out how they calculate their charges

15/05/07 Lloyds do not attend. Judgement ordered for £192 approx, £3 travel costs and removal of default notice

29/05/07 4pm Lloyds deadline for payment of CCJ expires. Warrant of execution ready to go

19/06/07 Letter from court stating Lloyds have made a cheque payment to court

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I've sound from experience Second Chance Offers rarely materialise. Apart from the splurge of 'fake' SCO's from hacked accounts, many bitters are suspicious that if the fist purchaser bailed out for an unknown reason, they won;t take the risk, believing the seller is simply getting desperate! I'd only consider it if I was in that situation!

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You're quite right,and generally if i've made a second chance offer to the next highest bidder they're generally not willing to pay as much as they had actually bid for the item.It all comes down to (in my opinion!) the integrity of the person who's bidding,i personally would,if i bid on anything,keep to my promise of buying at the price bid,unless of course it was not as described.

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it depends what you are selling, and what sort of rep you have. When I have offered a second chance offer about 75% of them have accepted.

 

 

HSBC WON three times!!!!! Read about my continuing battle (claim FOUR!) Link HERE

Capital One WON Link

HERE

GE capital (5 accounts) WON link HERE

Lloyds bank account WON second claim starting! link HERE

Budget insurance cough up WON link HERE

Principles WON link HERE

A&L (Mrs Crusher's account) claim link HERE

Barclays claim link HERE

 

Any advice given is on an informal basis only and without prejudice or liability. In in any doubt, consult a qualified lawyer.

IF YOU HAVE GOT YOUR MONEY BACK, PUT SOME BACK INTO THE SITE TO HELP KEEP IT OPEN!

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Any second chance offers i have offered have been accepted.

 

But they are one of the most used [causing problems] tools and unfortunatly when ebay then hide all bidders id's I think it may increase although ebay say it does decrease the amount of scams using sco's.

 

 

May i suggest you tighten up yur prefernces if you are getting this alot.

 

I would change so that only buyers with a cc on file and certain feedback can bid on your items etc.

 

 

Idax

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  • 1 year later...
HSBC is right, second chance offers can be offered to anyone who bid on the item and are free (though a FVF will apply if they accept the offer)

Please can I just ask If an item has ended and highest bidder has bailed outHow do you offer it to next highest bidder. Please reply anyone

 

Thanks

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Hi am trying to avoid possibility of being scammed, lost out on Ebay, then seller came back and said highest bidder backed out. We agreed I would pay my last highest bid but now to include postage as bogus bidder had pushed price up. All agreed, but now seller says doesn't know how to sell item to me as listing has ended, suggests cheque instead. Worried, neither seller or I know how to do transaction via Ebay and Paypal. So how do you pay for second chance offers?

 

Thanks

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I've had many second chance offers and it all goes through ebay and paypal. Ebay message you to inform you that the seller is offering it to you, and if you accept it, it's on a "buy it now", you buy and then go through paypal in the normal way.

 

This is how the seller does it:

 

http://pages.ebay.co.uk/help/sell/second_chance_offer.html

My advice is based on my opinion, my experience and my education. I do not profess to be an expert in any given field. If requested, I will provide a link where possible to relevant legislation or guidance, so that advice provided can be confirmed and I do encourage others to follow those links for their own peace of mind. Sometimes my advice is not what people necesserily want to hear, but I will advise on facts as I know them - although it may not be what a person wants to hear it helps to know where you stand. Advice on the internet should never be a substitute for advice from your own legal professional with full knowledge of your individual case.

 

 

Please do not seek, offer or produce advice on a consumer issue via private message; it is against

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  • 1 year later...

I wouldn't bother with second chance offers as you are leaving your self wide open to the 'shield bidding' [problem].

Also watch out for getting emails from members contacting you expressing their interest in an auction that just finished (i.e. had an important call during the final minutes-didn't get my bid on etc.). "if the sale falls through.......give me a price" etc.

Then of course, the high bidder gives some lame excuse (my kid placed the bid, I forgot to sign off on a public computer etc...) and tries to back out, then the "i missed placing my bid" member gets back in touch asking if the sale went through afnd of not could he come and see the item.....but of course offers much less knowing you have just been messed around loads and possibly have racked up extra fees in thee process, hoping you'll agree in letting the item go for much less.

 

Best bet is to either keep hold of the item, let them know they have legally won it, (according to court cases where non-paying bidders have been taken to the small claims court and judgement made in the sellers favour), and you will hold the item for 60 days before disposing/applying to reclaim it should they not pay for the item, plus interest, plus storage fees. After which time should they have not paid for (including storage fees and interest) and collected (or accepted delivery of) said item, a summons for the full amount, plus interest, plus storage fees will be issued and the matter pursued to the fullest extent the law will allow.....without prejudice. Chase it witty Dca's as this amount will be rather large, even a residual income of 20 p/wk would be a score.

Say its a car, storage could reasonably be charged at £50 p/d, 50x60= £3000. And that would be on top of the original sale price, plus interest. Decent amount to take someone to court over. Keep evidences and there should be no reason court action would fail.

 

Or....

 

Relist the item, if the item sells for less than the non-paying bidder should have paid, then issue a bill for the difference plus any non refunded costs. Failure of bill payment, issue summons for said amount.

 

Either way the courts should find in your favour.

 

I have not tried either route yet, but is a collection of advice I haves gleaned and based upon some actual court cases wfhere non-paying bidders have been taken to court and had judgements made against them.

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(according to court cases where non-paying bidders have been taken to the small claims court and judgement made in the sellers favour),

 

what cases would these be?

 

and if there is a judgement, I cant see what the damages would be as the seller gets the fees back if the transaction doesnt go through...

 

you still have the item, the buyer has the money.. I dont think any loss could be proved.

 

I have not tried either route yet, but is a collection of advice I haves gleaned and based upon some actual court cases wfhere non-paying bidders have been taken to court and had judgements made against them.

 

its a good job you have not tried either route because I think you could well end up in the poo.

Edited by HSBCrusher

 

 

HSBC WON three times!!!!! Read about my continuing battle (claim FOUR!) Link HERE

Capital One WON Link

HERE

GE capital (5 accounts) WON link HERE

Lloyds bank account WON second claim starting! link HERE

Budget insurance cough up WON link HERE

Principles WON link HERE

A&L (Mrs Crusher's account) claim link HERE

Barclays claim link HERE

 

Any advice given is on an informal basis only and without prejudice or liability. In in any doubt, consult a qualified lawyer.

IF YOU HAVE GOT YOUR MONEY BACK, PUT SOME BACK INTO THE SITE TO HELP KEEP IT OPEN!

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A seller would not necessarily have to prove a loss.

 

In order to dissuade the issue of a decree of specific performance a buyer would have to show why he should not be obliged to honour a contract, the proof of which exists, e.g.

 

ebay court case

 

The best bet for a buyer is therefore to invoke section 10 of the Distance Selling Regulations especially provided for the purpose, the application of which to eBay is already discussed, here:

 

Distance selling Regs and eBay?

 

To answer the original question,

 

I've been having increasing problems with non-paying bidders on my eBay auctions recently, and I'm wondering what the best course of action to take is.

 

the best course of action would be to inform the buyer that the right to cancel the contract exists, because it is strict liability criminal offence to fail to do so, according to section 6 4(g) of the CPUTRs.

 

Subsequent sections make it an offence.

8)

 

 

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perp doesnt the distance selling regs only apply to businesses not private sales

 

and before you start harping on about "people with alot of sales must be a business" kindly sort your brain out, ive got around 20 purchases on ebay but around 400 sales, reason being a house clearout dvds, cd's, games and whatever else i dont need that sells

 

under your often aired view this would make me a buisness

Please note:

 

  • I am employed in the IT sector of a high street retail chain but am not posting in any official capacity,so therefore any comments,suggestions or opinions are expressly personal ones and should not be viewed as an endorsement or with agreement of any company.
  • i am not legal trained in any form.
  • I have many experiences in life and do often use these in my posts

if ive been helpful kick my scales, if ive been unhelpful kick the scales of the person more helpful :eek:

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the distance selling regs dont apply.

 

there was no sale.

 

 

HSBC WON three times!!!!! Read about my continuing battle (claim FOUR!) Link HERE

Capital One WON Link

HERE

GE capital (5 accounts) WON link HERE

Lloyds bank account WON second claim starting! link HERE

Budget insurance cough up WON link HERE

Principles WON link HERE

A&L (Mrs Crusher's account) claim link HERE

Barclays claim link HERE

 

Any advice given is on an informal basis only and without prejudice or liability. In in any doubt, consult a qualified lawyer.

IF YOU HAVE GOT YOUR MONEY BACK, PUT SOME BACK INTO THE SITE TO HELP KEEP IT OPEN!

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ever since they took away the ability to leave negative feedback for non paying bidders

 

yes, this was a very bad move from ebay. Great news for crappy buyers, but bad news from genuine sellers who get messed around.

 

I don't think the solution is court, its people voting with their feet. Use ebid, or amazon... its a shame there are not many alternatives. If there were and peeps left in droves ebay would have to rethink many things including feedback policies.

 

 

HSBC WON three times!!!!! Read about my continuing battle (claim FOUR!) Link HERE

Capital One WON Link

HERE

GE capital (5 accounts) WON link HERE

Lloyds bank account WON second claim starting! link HERE

Budget insurance cough up WON link HERE

Principles WON link HERE

A&L (Mrs Crusher's account) claim link HERE

Barclays claim link HERE

 

Any advice given is on an informal basis only and without prejudice or liability. In in any doubt, consult a qualified lawyer.

IF YOU HAVE GOT YOUR MONEY BACK, PUT SOME BACK INTO THE SITE TO HELP KEEP IT OPEN!

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what cases would these be?

 

Hmm, struggling to actually find any, although I am coming across people all the time whom mention that they or a friend have taken, or been taken to court, as a seller, or by a seller respectively, and the judge has found against the non-paying bidder.

 

you still have the item, the buyer has the money.. I dont think any loss could be proved.

 

Well, it depends on how many times it happens, and also just what the item is. For example, I have sold the same car three times now, relisted each time due to non-paying winners. EBay only refund the fvf upon each unpaid item case being closed, and the listing fee for just the first non-sale, IF it sells the second time. So as you can see, the fees for constantly relisting, of which become non-refundable, can very quickly build. Just for this car, my non-refundable fees have built to around £36, just for the privilege of being smacked in the face by non-paying bidders, and eBay to boot.

 

Also, if the item is time sensitive, like venue tickets, or seasonal holiday items (stuff for Halloween, Easter etc.) There is real loss due to the time wasted by the non-paying winners, the period would have passed before resale/relist this rendering the item with less or no value until the following year, taking up space too. All are real losses.

Then there is the confidence issue, bidders see that a car is continuously relisted, what are they going to think, even with a "relisted due to time waster/non-paying winner"? People think that winning bidders must have backed out because there is something up with the vehicle, not the "buyers" or eBay.....

 

 

 

 

its a good job you have not tried either route because I think you could well end up in the poo.
How do you mean (just that I would have lost money in pursuing the matter or.......?)

 

 

Someone mentioned that people should vote with their feet, well Tbh, it seems that is just what eBay want. They don't want small volume private sellers,they want big business sellers, powers sellers etc, they want private buyers, big sellers. How will that benefit anyone but the business sellers, eBay and paypal? People need to start action, either in court or 'other', to make a point that people can't just 'enter into a contract to buy', refusing to pay at a whim, then expecting the seller to absorb the damages.

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Hmm, struggling to actually find any, although I am coming across people all the time whom mention that they or a friend have taken, or been taken to court, as a seller, or by a seller respectively, and the judge has found against the non-paying bidder.

 

I had already provided a link to the thread where the story was told for all to see:

 

ebay court case

 

People need to start action, either in court or 'other', to make a point that people can't just 'enter into a contract to buy', refusing to pay at a whim, then expecting the seller to absorb the damages.

 

:roll:

 

Yes they can and do, because the right to cancel the contract provided by Distance Selling Regulations is unconditional; a buyer is not obliged to give a reason to cancel.

 

The principle was already tested, some years ago, by an eBay seller in Germany who sued a buyer who refused to pay, on the basis that the Regulations do not apply to an "auction" on eBay. The matter was appealed all the the way to their highest court and the seller lost, so none have since been so foolish as to waste their time and money despite the precedent.

 

It is extremely unlikely that a court in the UK would come to a different conclusion because it could then be appealed to the ECJ, the primary source of the law being the EU Directive.

 

http://archiv.jura.uni-saarland.de/lawweb/pressreleases/internetauctions.html

 

8)

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again youve quoted the distance selling regulations

 

they do not apply unless it was a buisness....

Please note:

 

  • I am employed in the IT sector of a high street retail chain but am not posting in any official capacity,so therefore any comments,suggestions or opinions are expressly personal ones and should not be viewed as an endorsement or with agreement of any company.
  • i am not legal trained in any form.
  • I have many experiences in life and do often use these in my posts

if ive been helpful kick my scales, if ive been unhelpful kick the scales of the person more helpful :eek:

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