eBay selling - lost parcel

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Ebay, Auctions, Car Boot & Jumble Sales
31 replies 3.8K views
momo12momo12 Forumite
25 Posts
10 Posts First Anniversary
Hi,

This is quite a long post but I'd appreciate any advice or thoughts!

I am in a situation with an eBay item I sold and shipped through the MyHermes courier company. Prior to shipping the item I was in conversation with the buyer letting him know of the costs of the postage (as he was an international buyer). I offered him different options and of course he wanted the cheapest one,. However, this option included no insurance (to cover loss or damage over the standard £20 cover).
We spoke some more (through eBay messenger) and on three occasions, I strongly suggested that he take out the insurance; he declined and not only that but replied "WRT no insurance, I[I'll] bear the risk, don't worry". I thought "fine, that covers me then", or so I thought.
So I dropped the item off at my local parcelshop and got the tracking number which I submitted to eBay for the buyer to track. Just under a week later, I logged on to see where the parcel was. I noticed that the parcel had arrived at the national sorting hub but hadn't moved for 4 days. Maybe its taking a while because of the Christmas rush I thought. However, 10 days later it is still at the sorting hub. I called MyHermes and they suggested waiting 24 hours - this seems to be their go-to customer service response after doing some Google searching.
I then contact the seller to let him know that the item appears to have not moved for a very long time, he replies and agrees that something appears to have gone wrong and asks me to start asking questions.
After finally getting through to a member of the MyHermes team, he quickly comes to the conclusion that the item is lost and apologies for it. He sends me a claims for but I'm not sure if it will be any use for the total value of my item was £160 + £28 postage and as I stated above, I did not take out the insurance on instruction from the buyer. It might get me £20 but we shall see.
The part I'm part furious, part terrified is when speaking to eBay customer service, the refer me to the terms and conditions and tell me that it is the responsibility of the seller to ensure the item is delivered. I thought this was the case but when they then tell me that "chances are, the message from the buyer regarding asking you not to take the insurance out will have no bearing on this matter" I felt sick. I thought to myself "I am going to lost nearly £190 here!". He then tried to reassure me that maybe the item will turn up and that maybe myself and the buyer will come to an agreement together before eBay have to step in. However, I doubt that it's going to turn up and certainly doubt the buyer will agree that because he requested no insurance that he will take the hit.
After my discussion with eBay, I messaged the buyer and let him know that MyHermes have now said that the item is now lost but he remained optimistic (perhaps for the theatre of eBay messaging for when he opens a case?).

I fear that the item will never turn up, the buyer will open a case with eBay and because of the standard buyer protection - whereby the seller must ensure delivery, if not, the buyer will be refunded by means of charging the seller - I'll have to fit the bill.

I just feel that this would be totally unfair if it came to that. I have it in black and white; on eBay's own messaging system that the buyer took the risk of no insurance on his shoulders.

Thanks
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Replies

  • 19lottie8219lottie82 Forumite
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    Unfortunately if the parcel does not arrive you will have to refund. It’s your responsibility to take out adequate insurance to protect yourself in situations like this, not the buyers.
  • momo12momo12 Forumite
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    I was worried this may be the case.
    Would the messages from the buyer not have any bearing at all if this escalated to a case?
  • soolinsoolin Forumite, Board Guide
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    momo12 wrote: »
    Hi,

    This is quite a long post but I'd appreciate any advice or thoughts!

    I am in a situation with an eBay item I sold and shipped through the MyHermes courier company. Prior to shipping the item I was in conversation with the buyer letting him know of the costs of the postage (as he was an international buyer). I offered him different options and of course he wanted the cheapest one,. However, this option included no insurance (to cover loss or damage over the standard £20 cover).
    We spoke some more (through eBay messenger) and on three occasions, I strongly suggested that he take out the insurance; he declined and not only that but replied "WRT no insurance, I[I'll] bear the risk, don't worry". I thought "fine, that covers me then", or so I thought.
    So I dropped the item off at my local parcelshop and got the tracking number which I submitted to eBay for the buyer to track. Just under a week later, I logged on to see where the parcel was. I noticed that the parcel had arrived at the national sorting hub but hadn't moved for 4 days. Maybe its taking a while because of the Christmas rush I thought. However, 10 days later it is still at the sorting hub. I called MyHermes and they suggested waiting 24 hours - this seems to be their go-to customer service response after doing some Google searching.
    I then contact the seller to let him know that the item appears to have not moved for a very long time, he replies and agrees that something appears to have gone wrong and asks me to start asking questions.
    After finally getting through to a member of the MyHermes team, he quickly comes to the conclusion that the item is lost and apologies for it. He sends me a claims for but I'm not sure if it will be any use for the total value of my item was £160 + £28 postage and as I stated above, I did not take out the insurance on instruction from the buyer. It might get me £20 but we shall see.
    The part I'm part furious, part terrified is when speaking to eBay customer service, the refer me to the terms and conditions and tell me that it is the responsibility of the seller to ensure the item is delivered. I thought this was the case but when they then tell me that "chances are, the message from the buyer regarding asking you not to take the insurance out will have no bearing on this matter" I felt sick. I thought to myself "I am going to lost nearly £190 here!". He then tried to reassure me that maybe the item will turn up and that maybe myself and the buyer will come to an agreement together before eBay have to step in. However, I doubt that it's going to turn up and certainly doubt the buyer will agree that because he requested no insurance that he will take the hit.
    After my discussion with eBay, I messaged the buyer and let him know that MyHermes have now said that the item is now lost but he remained optimistic (perhaps for the theatre of eBay messaging for when he opens a case?).

    I fear that the item will never turn up, the buyer will open a case with eBay and because of the standard buyer protection - whereby the seller must ensure delivery, if not, the buyer will be refunded by means of charging the seller - I'll have to fit the bill.

    I just feel that this would be totally unfair if it came to that. I have it in black and white; on eBay's own messaging system that the buyer took the risk of no insurance on his shoulders.

    Thanks

    Unfortunately insurance is for the seller's benefit, not the buyers. If buyer opens a case and if tracking doesn't show delivery then you will need to issue your buyer with a full refund, you would then need to claim whatever insurance value you choose with the courier. Stay polite and re assuring but don't do anything until buyers opens a formal case.

    It isn't 'fair' on the seller if they have been persuaded by a buyer to go without the protection of insurance, but then things often aren't fair and a seller really does need to always consider protecting themselves first before giving in to a buyer's demands.
    I'm the Board Guide for the Ebay Board , Charities Board , Dosh & Disability , Up Your Income and the Local MoneySaving-England board which means I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. However, do remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to [email protected] (it's not part of my role to deal with this). Any views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.com
    New to Forum? Guide
  • soolinsoolin Forumite, Board Guide
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    momo12 wrote: »
    I was worried this may be the case.
    Would the messages from the buyer not have any bearing at all if this escalated to a case?

    It should not make any difference , sometimes eBay do strange things and sometimes they even do goodwill refunds without charging the seller . It is rare though and I think you should not bank on getting out of this without losing money.
    I'm the Board Guide for the Ebay Board , Charities Board , Dosh & Disability , Up Your Income and the Local MoneySaving-England board which means I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. However, do remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to [email protected] (it's not part of my role to deal with this). Any views are mine and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.com
    New to Forum? Guide
  • pinkshoespinkshoes Forumite
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    It is you that has the contract with the courier so you alone responsible for making sure it is suitably insured.

    Offering altenatives was crazy!

    But... reading your post, it seems that the buyer didnt contact you, but YOU looked at the tracking then decided to tell the buyer it hasn't arrived and appears lost.

    Call me cynical, but you have a buyer that deliberately opted for cheap postage, who hasn't opened a case yet. Are you sure they haven't recieved it yet? They could be taking you for a mug...

    Also, there was a recent ish case that argued the extra insurance was against the parcel getting damaged in transit, but losing it counts as negligence. They were pushing for a full pay out.
    Should've = Should HAVE (not 'of')
    Would've = Would HAVE (not 'of')

    No, I am not perfect, but yes I do judge people on their use of basic English language. If you didn't know the above, then learn it! (If English is your second language, then you are forgiven!)
  • momo12momo12 Forumite
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    soolin wrote: »
    Unfortunately insurance is for the seller's benefit, not the buyers. If buyer opens a case and if tracking doesn't show delivery then you will need to issue your buyer with a full refund, you would then need to claim whatever insurance value you choose with the courier. Stay polite and re assuring but don't do anything until buyers opens a formal case.

    It isn't 'fair' on the seller if they have been persuaded by a buyer to go without the protection of insurance, but then things often aren't fair and a seller really does need to always consider protecting themselves first before giving in to a buyer's demands.
    I'll ensure I always have insurance from on, that is for sure!
    soolin wrote: »
    It should not make any difference , sometimes eBay do strange things and sometimes they even do goodwill refunds without charging the seller . It is rare though and I think you should not bank on getting out of this without losing money.

    I called eBay to discuss this subject this morning and after the eBay agent agreeing with me that my messages from the buyer should protect me from being forced to refund I asked for an email to that effect. I recieved this:

    "This is an email confirmation regarding the item you have sold. According to the Ebay messaging, buyer confirmed that the seller is not responsible for the item if it will be lost in transit by the courier. Please take a note on this one as if the buyer will open a claim against the seller.

    Also, you can send us documentation by this link:
    To help us resolve your case, please respond to this email within the next 3 days, by uploading official documentation. Please upload documents via this link:"

    So I've submitted my proof of postage, pictures showing the item in a box etc. They obviously have access to my messages which is the main argument to my case.
    pinkshoes wrote: »
    It is you that has the contract with the courier so you alone responsible for making sure it is suitably insured.

    Offering altenatives was crazy!

    But... reading your post, it seems that the buyer didnt contact you, but YOU looked at the tracking then decided to tell the buyer it hasn't arrived and appears lost.

    Call me cynical, but you have a buyer that deliberately opted for cheap postage, who hasn't opened a case yet. Are you sure they haven't recieved it yet? They could be taking you for a mug...

    Also, there was a recent ish case that argued the extra insurance was against the parcel getting damaged in transit, but losing it counts as negligence. They were pushing for a full pay out.

    Sorry, maybe I didn't word my original post as well as I could have. my first message to the buyer was me asking if he had received the package, no more. HIs response was that he had looked at the tracking and noticed that the item hadn't moved from the hub. I don't think he is trying it on to be honest.

    Interesting point on the insurance for damage subject. I don't think it would work for me though, the insurance is clearly referring to lost/damaged claims.

    I don't think I'll get anything out of MyHermes. if anything, I'm hoping that in the event of a case being opened, eBay will side with me as per the agent I spoke to today. She has put a note on my account it seems for anyone reviewing a potential case on this item to take specific note of the messages exchanged between myself and the buyer.

    We shall see!
  • edited 27 December 2018 at 8:54PM
    jeffukjeffuk Forumite
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    edited 27 December 2018 at 8:54PM
    What if the buyer opens an Item Not Received case via Paypal?
  • LorianLorian Forumite
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    What was the country of destination?
  • momo12momo12 Forumite
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    jeffuk wrote: »
    What if the buyer opens an Item Not Received case via Paypal?
    Wouldn't I use the same proof? Aren't they under the same umbrella?
    Out of curiosity, if he were to open a case with one, and it go against him, would he be able to open with the other?
    Lorian wrote: »
    What was the country of destination?
    Would that have a bearing on outcome of this?
  • LorianLorian Forumite
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    momo12 wrote: »
    Would that have a bearing on outcome of this?

    depends how long its been missing now. I've had Hermes go missing/no scans for a week in the UK and still eventually turn up.
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