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JimboJames1972

I Pulled The Trigger, But Will I Be Lucky, Punk?

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First off, sorry for the mangling of Clint Eastwood's best lines, but it was the best I could do...

Second, this is a tale of "if it is too good to be true, then it probably is". But I still have my fingers crossed.

About a month ago I spotted this wee beauty on eBay

Tudor Day Date (1985)

I had been half-thinking of adding one to my collection for smart/casual wear (probably on a smart leather strap) and was specifically after this day/date arrangement, gold bezel and cream or champagne dial.  This was priced at a bit over £500 and had all boxes, hang tag, original dealer receipt and recent service receipt too. Fueled by Merlot I asked only a few basic questions and hit the Buy it Now option before it got snapped up.

The seller did reply to my first question (so he/she does actually exist) but then I heard nothing for a few days.  Looking at their profile I saw that they had zero feedback (eeeek!) and so guessed that this was probably their first sale.  Being the kind soul I am, I send another handful of eBay messages to reassure them and guide them through the postage notification and adding tracking information steps.

Three days later I got notification it had been posted (standard delivery from Austria) but there was no tracking info.  Bummer.  So, another few messages to further guide and assist...

A week or so later and still nothing.  Starting to get worried, another message to the seller to please pull his/her finger out and confirm postage by adding tracking info.

Another week and a bit of a shock - this listing had vanished from my "Auction Ended" list.  eBay notifications said it had been removed and was no longer available.  So, straight into the phone to eBay to further question.  Thankfully, they were exceptionally helpful and explained that the seller had violated some of their more detailed policies, had had their account terminated and would not be welcome back as a trader.  So, where did I stand? By now it was several weeks after I had sent my PayPal payment so I was advised to open a "non delivery of item" claim.  Naturally I did, and I also sent the seller a final message to inform them of this and request proof of postage/tracking.

A week later, no reply from the seller and no delivery of the watch.  eBay immediately refunded the full cost, and shipping.

So.  It has taken a month or so.  I have paid, but I have got every penny back.  Technically the watch might actually be on its way, perhaps going over land rather than by air, perhaps being held up in Customs, perhaps, perhaps, perhaps.  Or, the seller was trying a scam?  Either way I am hoping that Mr Postie drops something off to me; I will, of course immediately contact eBay and the seller and seek advice on what to do with what will effectively be a free watch....

Moral of the story - pay through PayPal, screenshot every invoice, payment and message, only use eBay messages for communication, get your PayPal account fully verified. Cover your a**e at every turn...

J

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Even the cheapest posting from Romania to the UK takes a week, two at most. I wonder what is it that he did wrong that they thought was dubious.

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I agree, payment protections are lifesavers.

Also, just to add to what has been already said, it is best to act quickly when something goes wrong. Ebay offers 30 days payment guarantee and Paypal 180 days buyer protection. Ebay works a lot faster than paypal, so its always best to claim through ebay whenever possible. 

Also, make sure you use ebay messaging whenever possible and make sure you mention anything you might wish to rely on later in a dispute. Paypal has access to your eBay messages relating to a particular case when you open a claim and you end up with irrefutable confirmation that your account of how things went down is the truth. Having a "paper trail" that evidences how things went down, and having the seller acknowledge what you have said to be true, is a lifesaver. If you communicate with the seller over phone or over a none ebay platform, get them to acknowledge what was said on eBay.

Screenshotting everything and making sure you have a copy of all messages is best practice, but having all the pertinent information on eBay messenger will save you ALOT of time - especially if the buyer tries to argue that your forged the external evidence (or forges their own evidence). The paypal dispute resolution team are notoriously slow. Having everything there for them to automatically will mean that dispute will be settled a lot more quickly. You can also call them up to hassle them so that they move your case up the queue ... that works, but I would not go down this route if there is any doubt over which way the case will go (annoyed people more often tend to make decisions based on how they feel towards parties rather than on logic).

If you are lucky enough to end up with the watch, you will have to return it if they seller wants it back - it would be unjust enrichment if you not only got a refund but ended up with the watch anyway. But, you have no active duty to return it if the seller doesn't respond / request their watch back. 

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Really pleased you got this sorted.  EBay is full of scams using downloaded photos.   Luckily they are wise to this and a happy ending resulted but once again the old adage applies. If it looks too good etc ..

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Moral of the story, never buy an expensive item from a Zero feedback seller  99.9% it's a Scam... Unfortunately :rolleyes:

Edited by martinzx
Typo

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And another moral, never buy online whilst fuelled by Merlot (other alcohol is available and this warning should be heeded for those as well) 

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Thanks, Chaps.  Thankfully, all funds have been returned and I have lost nothing except a bit of time.

Yes, I probably have too much faith in the human spirit, and am ready to trust too easily.  However, I have also learnt from previous mistakes and now cover myself better.  Zero feedabck is a hazard, but everyone has to start somewhere...?

No matter, nothing lost, nothing ventured, nothing gained.

J

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Ebay is (unfortunately) very biased towards the buyer and that leaves a lot of room for scamming to take place. My uncle has been scammed a lot of times (lost both money and the items that he sold) by buyers and eBay NEVER helped him out despite offering paper, proof, etc.

So as a buyer it's actually safe regardless of what happens as you'll get your money back.

Edited by gimli

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