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Ebay seller threatening Small Claims

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Hi there. Please help!


Long story short,

I bought a compass from ebay, listed as "new" for £27.95 total (£25.00 for item, £2.95 for postage) Arrived scratched and damaged.

Informed seller, and sent photos showing damage, requesting to return it for a refund as per eBay return procedure. 


They initially refused a refund saying "returns not accepted" and said there was nothing wrong with the item.

I quoted a bit of eBay's returns policy for items sold not as described.

The seller, suddenly, manually sent a refund from within PayPal for £27.95 only but failed to send me any funds to cover return postage/or provide a paid return postage label.


I suspect he purposely did not adhere to eBay's returns policy guidelines, and instead did things manually via PayPal, in order to later cheat me or otherwise cause problems during the return postage. Of course, if you transact outside of eBay's procedures and system, then you are not covered.


eBay messages sent back and forth. I repeatedly requested he created a paid refund label. He demanded I send it at my own cost, and once he received the compass, he would refund any incurred return p+p fees at a later date. First he said he couldn't create a label, when I linked him to eBay's customer support page so he could find out how to do it, he then claimed he "didn't have time", and finally said it wasn't possible because he'd manually sent a refund.


By this time, the tone of his messages had become quite demanding and pressurizing.

From past experience with difficult eBayers, I believed he was going to try something, as I had listed a high-end camera bag on eBay myself and the approx. market value was about £175.


I "blocked" his eBay account from bidding on my bag. 

Sure enough, literally immediately after I sent him a very firm, final message telling him to send me the return postage costs before I would return the compass, my camera bag received bids from 2 eBay users who had variations of his uncommon surname, and also his original seller account's username.

One of the accounts was created that day and had zero feedback, the other had a feedback history of about 20 or so.


I confronted him about it, in a final message the following day, and he said he knew nothing about it, but his "wife" may have been "causing mischief".

I reported him to eBay.


Since then he sent a few more messages but I told him I wasn't interesting in communicating further, and the offer to return it still stands, but only once I have received funds to cover the return postage cost.


This was all over the period of about 4 weeks, and I still have the compass and i'm still awaiting funds from the seller to cover return postage fees.


Received a letter before claim from the guy today.

He says he will seek to claim £30+ per hour for his time, based on his salary, if it goes to court, and will need to travel from his home in England to Scotland should I decide on a Simple Procedure here.


In his letter, he claims he has "offered" to pay for the return numerous times, which is inaccurate as he wants me to post it first, then wait for reimbursement at his discretion at a later date via PayPal.


I responded at length to his letter, sticking to the facts and re-stating my position.

Of course, I have proof of all the communications via eBay messages, and also his shill-bidding activity on my camera bag which of course only served to make trust his word even less.


Please can you advise what I should do in this case, and if he does decided to take it to court, given the information i've provided, how do you think it would play out?


Many thanks in advance for your help, and sorry for the length of this.



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Any claim will always be at your local court as you Are the defendant


Why didn't you do a chargeback??

Not worth arguing over £3 TO RETURN IT Imho

please don't hit Quote...just type we know what we said earlier..


if everyone stopped blindly paying DCA's tomorrow

the biggest financial industry in the UK, the whole DCA industry would collapse overnight.



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What should I have charged back?


To add, I emailed him a copy of my response letter, and this is his response below. What do you make of this?! It seems completely bonkers IMO. I have not received this "third party royal mail" postage label he talks about buying on 3rd March, as I've told him many times now. All I've received is a few messages from eBay, none of which contained any postage labels. Nothing of the sort has arrived in my PayPal account.


He seems to be ignoring ebay's money back guarantee returns policy, for items "sold not as described" (as he readily admits below.) so I assume I am in still in the right here?

Private and confidential. Without prejudice.

I have not read  your email as I do not accept electronic communications in regards to this dispute which sits alongside your earlier request in relation to not communicating again, please forward anything you feel appropriate in writing, Please consider what you have sent  via email as unread.
No future correspondence will be accepted or read/replied via any electronic methods i.e. email, unless of course you are confirming you have used the postage paid label sent to you on March 4th 2019 by eBay to return my item in which case I will consider this issue resolved. failing that I have no alternative than to seek redress via the legal channels.
The facts remain Feb 20th 2019 you requested a refund  fair enough I had not seen the damage as it had sat in its packaging since purchase so I just took pictures and posted on eBay, then later that evening you requested a postage paid label, at that time I had no responsibility to refund the purchase price of the item until I received the item back however as i was unable to find the returns postage section on my phone I took it upon myself to refund the amount paid, I repeatedly requested you send the item back and repeatedly requested you send me your PayPal and postage details so i could not find how to sort the returns postage out.
On each occasion you refused, eBay confirmed to me which was relayed to you that as I had given the refund they could not do anything about postage labels so again I repeatedly asked again to no avail, to which you then sent a link to a useless article. eventually after nearly two hours I got in touch with eBay and explained the situation
On March 3rd 2019 whilst online with eBay I purchased under the explicit instructions and guidance of eBay a postage paid label from a 3rd party and emailed it to eBay at their request, they inform me they have sent this to you alone with numerous messages for you to return the item to me.
For the avoidance of any doubt. some undeniable facts!
20th Feb 2019 refund requested and given  on Feb 21st 2019 electronic evidence available to prove this beyond any doubt.
Item not received details outlined above.
3rd & 4th March following repeated requests for you to send me postage costs and PayPal details a Postage label sent to you from eBay emails and chat transcripts evidence beyond any doubt.
Receipt for the cost of my purchase of a 3rd party Royal Mail postage paid label beyond any doubt
Item still not received
I have involved eBay legal department and a relative who is a solicitor as i will be requesting any emails, chat transcripts or other documents relating to this issue including  very specifically the postage paid label proof it was purchased by me and sent to eBay to be forwarded to you.
Your whole position is revolving around your hunch/opinion you would lose out on less than £3.00 postage yet not satisfied with me refunding the whole amount or my explanation which I did not have to do until i received the item back, the evidence is very clear I have as previously explained .
I have fulfilled my obligations completely in terms of giving you a full refund and paying for a postage paid label which was sent to you by eBay, yet you still have my property. 
You ave two choices, return my item which you are withholding without permission despite having a refund and a postage paid label or keep it in which case i am left with no alternative but to follow the legal avenues available to me.
Time spent on this email 15 minutes, charges to be added as per my letter, this will be added to the final owed amount, a statement will be sent to you periodically by Royal Mail recorded delivery.



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All this over £3....

Send it back

You can get free proof of posting at any po counter

Thats all you need

please don't hit Quote...just type we know what we said earlier..


if everyone stopped blindly paying DCA's tomorrow

the biggest financial industry in the UK, the whole DCA industry would collapse overnight.



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So I should be £3.00 worse off after returning an item which was falsely advertised?

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No but take the ypperhand.

Do it

Send ebay a coopy of. Your proof and they can see you didnt get the returns slip

You'll get your money theyll take it from his account

please don't hit Quote...just type we know what we said earlier..


if everyone stopped blindly paying DCA's tomorrow

the biggest financial industry in the UK, the whole DCA industry would collapse overnight.



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As the amount he is claiming is so low, this would be a small claim and covered by part 45 rules regarding costs. Meaning the only costs he would be able to claim if he issued proceedings and won would be limited to the court fee.



i Assume you have not yet opened s “not as described” case on eBay. I suspect the seller refunded via PayPal to prevent you from doing this as it would effect his seller ratings.


if you are able to open a case, then do that now and eBay will provide a returns label to you and charge the seller for this. 


As the seller is being nasty, I would advise contacting eBay to report him and to get them to step in.


also I’m pretty sure that courts accept email as a valid form of written contact, so his childish refusal to acknowledge your email would not stand up

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