I believe I got scammed? (eBay) Any help/advice, please!

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by 25ml, Feb 20, 2010.

  1. 25ml macrumors newbie

    Feb 10, 2010
    I recently purchased a MacBook Pro off eBay for 1.6k, I paid promptly VIA PayPal (Linked to my checking account, direct transfer) and figured that was that. A couple of days later, I see that the person "refunded" my payment. Which I found odd, so I emailed the seller repeatedly to no reply. Then yesterday, I get an email from him claiming his account was compromised along with his PayPal account, therefore the item listed he never had. He tells me to file chargeback or call my bank since he has "insufficient funds" in his bank to cover a refund.

    The 1.6k is still listed as "pending" till March 3rd, and I feel like I am totally getting ripped. What should I do? :( Please help, I feel so distraught at the moment cause I didn't pay with a CC, will contacting my bank resolve anything or is it out of their reach?

    Thanks for the support and advice :(
  2. MacDawg macrumors Core


    Mar 20, 2004
    "Between the Hedges"
    Contact eBay
    Contact your bank

    And don't delay
  3. Eddyisgreat macrumors 601

    Oct 24, 2007
    Why do you say "refunded". Did he send you an email and can you see this reflected on the dashboard at paypal.com?

    Just communicate with paypal and keep record of all emails. Try to contact him via ebay or paypal if they have an intergrated messaging system. I know they do for disputes but ya'll may not be at that stage yet.

    There is absolutely no reason you shouldn't get your money. I've been on the seller side of a few baseless claims and one of the few things that I had was tracking information. Without that there's no proof any goods were sent (besides the fact that he's acknowledged you aren't getting anything).
  4. 25ml thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 10, 2010
    On the PayPal dashboard it lists as a "Refund" has been issued, and it was suppose to post yesterday but it didn't. In its place I received an e-mail stating that this person had "Insufficient Funds" in his account and that PayPal would try again on March 3rd.

    I was Googling scams like this and if I had paid with a CC I could call my CC and claim a chargeback and be covered, but since I went and did a direct/instant transfer via PayPal that it would not be covered under their Buyers Protection junk, so now I'm stuck in a debacle.

    I have a hunch this guy got the money, cashed it, left his account empty and issued me a refund via eCheck through PayPal that will constantly bounce. That's my dilemma. :confused:
  5. Eddyisgreat macrumors 601

    Oct 24, 2007
    Ahh well if you would have paid by CC and then issued a chargeback, PayPal would have banned your account which, at this point, might not even matter if you no longer want to use paypal.

    Once you open a dispute (if not already) and they find in your favor, Paypal will dip into their funds and refund you and place a negative balance on the account of the seller. Paypal of course is like any other business and they will forward negative accounts to collection agencies.

    If you are still on the refund stage w/o a dispute that may be why things aren't being handled as quickly as you like. It's at your discretion to escalate it, but I generally exhaust all my options with buyers/sellers before going to the last resort. But you technically aren't screwed until after the dispute. Sucks that you have to go through all this but i'm confident you'll receive your funds eventually if not soon.
  6. mastercool10 macrumors member

    Dec 23, 2009
    Sounds like someone is taking you for a ride.

    Since you paid through your bank account, just make an appointment with your bank.

    Tell them the bank reps the story. They will then give you some forms to fill out and investigate the case. They will give 100% of your money back this way as well.

    Good luck.
  7. devils punchbow macrumors member

    Feb 12, 2010
    The first thing you should do is call Pay Pal. They are very friendly, and helpful over the phone. You can tell them the situation, and they will be good to direct you on what to do next. At least this will also make them aware of the situation, and they will note the call details under your account. If further problems do come about then some record will have been initiated already. Call Pay Pal......
  8. 25ml thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 10, 2010
    I called PayPal this morning, the representative assured me that I should get a "full refund" even if he cashed out the initial payment. I hope he wasn't yanking my chain, I'm still paranoid. It is, after all, a lot of money to have allocated in limbo. :(

    I so HOPE you're right, I'm so distraught I barely slept a wink last night. The guy refuses to answer my e-mails now. His last message to me was, "Deal with it." I think after this ordeal I will close my eBay account and PayPal account, it's sad. I used to love dealing on eBay, but after this hassle, it's just not worth it.
  9. InfoSecmgr Guest


    Dec 31, 2009
    Ypsilanti, Michigan
    Your point about paypal banning him if he does a chargeback is untrue. I have done this twice in the past when the product was either faulty or not delivered and they wouldn't issue a refund using "normal" means. Chargebacks look bad for the seller, not the buyer.
  10. Badger^2 macrumors 68000


    Oct 29, 2009
    bummer. hope you get your cash back

    how much feedback did the seller have?

    for $1600 you could get a *brand new* 15" MBP... was there something special about this one?
  11. elpmas macrumors 68000


    Sep 9, 2009
    Where the fresh snow don't go.
    I think you'll be fine. Paypal will reimburse you your money. They deal with the perp and you don't have to. Most likely you'll get a refund. Atleast thats what i hope. Keep us updated on this, I want to find out how paypal handles this :p
  12. niuniu macrumors 68020


    Mar 29, 2009
    A man of the people. The right sort of people.
    What's his feedback/rating? Link to the eBay listing too..
  13. GeekGirl* macrumors 65816


    Feb 26, 2009
    Buffalo, NY
    I had a bad time with paypal, i bought a navi unit, the seller shipped it but never got it, Paypal said he shipped it and voted in his favor so not impressed.
  14. RyanTheGeneral macrumors regular

    Sep 10, 2009
    I would of been very upset also.. I really hope things work out for you, You have the guys email, is their a way to track it? Can you report this to the police as this is grand larceny.

    If he truly did as you say and it was intentional then he technically stole from you and is guilty of grand larceny. I would look into that, I know your main priority is getting your money back and I do not blame you at all, but I think you should make him pay for this more then just paypal or ebay sending him to collections.

    Good luck
  15. alent1234 macrumors 603

    Jun 19, 2009
    back in the day when i used to read PC Magazine and Consumer Reports the one useful bit of advice they gave is always use a credit card.

    when i use paypal i make sure to only use a credit card
  16. aerohunter macrumors newbie

    Feb 21, 2010
    Call your bank too

    Paypal always promise the refund, but it might take weeks if not months depending on the situations. Call your bank, and file a dispute, and that will only take days before you get your money back. Even if you used direct transfer, the bank will charge back Paypal. Then Paypal will have to deal with it.

    Don't just wait for Paypal, they will keep telling they are still doing investigation and this and that...
  17. senseless macrumors 68000


    Apr 23, 2008
    Pennsylvania, USA
    "deal with it" ; wow, that would have set me off too. That's like admitting guilt with no remorse.
  18. ARF900 macrumors 65816


    Oct 30, 2009
    This is they way it SHOULD happen, dont worry OP, youll get your money back eventually. You cant get away with this on ebay, if you could, more people would do it.
  19. duky macrumors 6502

    Jun 25, 2007
    North Carolina
    PayPal pretty much sides with the buyer so you should be fine. Take a deep breath, do as PayPal instructs you and if necessary go to your bank and you'll get your money back eventually. It's an unfortunate situation, I personally hate eBay and don't intend to ever use it for large purchases or sales.
  20. Music_Producer macrumors 68000

    Sep 25, 2004
    Ebay pretty much guarantees every purchase - every penny including shipping is refunded in the event the seller's a fraud or does not deliver. Most of my purchases on ebay have been very satisfactory, but 2 purchases went sour - and ebay refunded everything. I didn't even have to call my cc company.

    It will take up to 7 days though, I would suggest you go through ebay - there is a direct link under 'resolution center'. Select 'I did not receive my item' and file a dispute.
  21. SDub90 macrumors 6502a

    Nov 9, 2009
    Long Island
    If you log into paypal.com and it is listed as "pending" or as have been refunded, then you will get your money back. It just takes a few days, it typically is about a week for me when receiving or sending echecks or directly from a bank account.
  22. OldCorpse macrumors 65816


    Dec 7, 2005
    compost heap
    Lesson for the future: never, ever, ever, ever, deal with paypal using your bank account. Always use your credit card - again, not debit, but credit. If you must use paypal, use it with your credit card. That's an iron rule, never to be broken. If I come across a merchant or a situation where I can only deal with direct paypal bank transfers, I walk away, period.

    Look at what happened with you - even if you don't lose money on this deal, what a monumental hassle! With a credit card, it's just one call, and you immediately dispute the transaction - DONE.

    Again - write this down, print it out, and glue it to the top of your monitor:

  23. bjb.butler macrumors 6502a


    Aug 18, 2008
    Southern California
  24. 25ml thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 10, 2010
    Monstrumental hassle is exactly what this has become. I've contacted PayPal day in and day out and they keep reassuring me that the matter will be resolved and I would get every penny back.

    I'm still waiting, the dispute is still being reviewed. It's been 10 days since this has occured and I am still locked out of 1.6k of money because of a stupid system eBay has built for paying their merchants.

    Lesson learned, no more payments via Direct Transfer, I'm doing it Credit Card all the way or I'm not even going to bother with eBay anymore. I'm already contemplating shutting my accounts down with eBay/PayPal. This hassle has really turned me away from them. I used to enjoy selling/purchasing things off of their, but now, I've turned sour.

    Thanks for all the advice, I'm just waiting to see PayPal's next move, and if things aren't escalating fast enough for me I'm just going to take this to my bank and have them handle it. I don't care if PayPal punishes me for forcefully taking my money back. :mad:
  25. marksandvig macrumors regular

    May 21, 2006
    Someone manages to get into my PayPal account and order $800 of merchandise and have it delivered to Texas (I live in CA). I called paypal immediately to tell them this was fraudulent. They said they would look into it.

    What bugged me about this is I used to work at a Credit Card Processor, and if something like this happened (i.e. large purchases in different states, we immediately would freeze the card), which paypal obviously didn't.

    What bugged me more is that they said it would take about 10 days to get the money back. I hung up, called my credit card company, and had the money in a matter of minutes.

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