PayPal refuse risk leaving no buyer protection

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When attempting to make a payment via PayPal earlier today, this message appeared stating the seller can’t currently accept payments through PayPal.

I’m guessing that either their account isn’t fully verified, or PayPal have put them on hold due to a security risk. I suppose I should be thankful to PayPal for protecting my money but I’m not – in reality they’re only protecting their own money leaving me to shoulder all of the risk.

None of the alternative payment options offered (credit card, cheque or postal order) qualify for buyer protection, buyers are only covered if they pay via PayPal. when bidding with a nice logo explaining you’re protected up to £500.00. It’s not quite so good when it comes to paying and you find that if you pay you won’t be covered at all.

I phoned PayPal and they definitely advised against giving out card details over the phone – their entire raison d’être is to keep my card details safe. Cheques and postal orders once cashed are pretty much impossible to reverse should the goods not arrive.

Faced with this situation what would you do? More importantly what kind of impression would this situation make on a new buyer who has been told countless times by eBay that PayPal is the safest way to pay online? Other forms of payment might be safe for the seller but with no buyer protection they sure don’t feel very safe as a buyer.

11 Responses

  1. As a buyer I would be looking to cancel the transaction, reporting the buyer for innapropriate selling behaviour. Paypal is compulsory on so if this was a UK sale, and the seller can’t comply with their advertised payment methods, I will want to cancel and go and buy elsewhere.

    So double bad news, bad for the buyer, even worse probably for the seller.

  2. When the seller listed the item I’m guessing that their PayPal account was in good standing – might (quite possibly 😉 ) not be their fault it’s limited 😯

    Doesn’t seem right to report em for that – but it’s a good point…. losing your PayPal account will kill your eBay business dead 😯

  3. “losing your PayPal account will kill your eBay business dead” Tell me about it lol

    To list the item there account would have to be in good standing or it won’t let you list, it could be something totally inoccent i.e a flagged transaction with a dodgy card which would be out of the buyers control as Paypal will immediately freeze the account whilst they check.

    IMO as a seasoned eBay Chris would have checked the sellers history before bidding so in this case I think it would be only fair to give the seller the opportunity of giving his side of the story instead of adding to his/her problems by immediately going for the jugular.

  4. I recently had a similar problem with paypal.

    Buyers were getting a message to try later or contact me, with no other information.

    Once they started to contact me, and all incoming payments have stopped, I call paypal, who told me there was no problem with my account.

    So i think, damn paypal bug, transfer all the money out, at which point orders coming through again.

    Next day, same problem, thinking about it i realise that the problem occurred when my account hit 1000 pounds in credit. Withdrew the cash again, money comes in again. Paypal refused to acknowledge there was a balance limit on my account.

    Cost of two evenings lost business, about 4 thousand pounds, paypal customer service unable to spot problem or acknowledge it and loss of customers confidence in me. Priceless.

  5. “I phoned PayPal and they definitely advised against giving out card details over the phone”

    Which is rather odd considering folk do exactly that dozens of times a month ( at least I do)

  6. sometimes it is the seller himself : ”N.B. UK PAYPAL USERS – MAXIMUM AMOUNT ACCEPTED BY PAYPAL IS £36 (exc. p&p) NO EXCEPTIONS” from item xxxxxxxxxxxx. How do we get protection on this? And this from a seller with 12000 feedback. You would think he knew the rules of Ebay UK.

    (edited by admin to remove item number)

  7. #1

    Surely you’ve been on ebay long enough to know that there are many paypal glitches and not to jump to conclusions.

    It is hard enough as a seller fending off numpty newbies with out experienced users adding to your woes by reporting you. Especially when ebay/paypal have a shoot first ask questions later policy.

  8. #7 I guess that’s because it’s the maximum coverage that the post office will afford them on the basis of a 1st class stamp. Still breaks PP user agreement though

  9. This is a bug. We’ve just had someone contact us with the same message as above and our PayPal account et al is in good standing and verified.

    Another day and another glitch.

  10. As a seller … PayPal once restricted my account for several days right in the middle of several featured plus, immediate payment required listings. I was told I was restricted due to my high volume. eBay refused to compensate me for the dead listings and towards the end of the call they pretended they couldn’t hear me anymore, but suggested I try “Live Help”. I lost about a thousand dollars over the whole issue.

    As a buyer … I’ve run into this issue at least twice and that is when I’d use BidPay and ask the seller to eat the cost (used to be buyer paid the fees there) but I guess that isn’t possible anymore.

    If you have to rely on PayPal’s supposed buyer protection to make your decisions on whether to purchase maybe you should be looking for better quality sellers instead.


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