Sold iPhone 3GS on eBay - Buyer disputes, now what?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by jshort, Jun 12, 2010.

  1. jshort macrumors regular

    Jun 8, 2009
    I sold my flawless, perfectly functional iPhone 3GS on eBay the day before WWDC started. I've probably sold 10 personal phones on eBay.. 3 of which were iPhones. I pulled the SIM did a hard reset, etc so that upon turning the phone on it would seek iTunes like it's supposed to, etc.

    For whatever reason the buyer can't seem to get the phone up and running and rather than respond to any of my attempts to help him with it.. he's filed a dispute on PayPal. So there goes my money AND he's got my iPhone 3GS. :mad:

    Now what!?! I've never been through one of these disputes before, does PayPal usually side with the buyer? Can they force a refund and still allow to keep my phone?
  2. Tara Luvs Apple macrumors 6502a

    Mar 16, 2008
    PayPal may not be of much help, but you can also try eBay. I would let both companies know that you have tried to reach the buyer to no avail and that he/she most likely is trying to pull a fast one.

    If the buyer does receive a refund, I would then send a dispute saying that you have not received the phone (granted you do not get it back). Maybe even after then, you can file a police report for theft? Good luck!
  3. lorenwade macrumors 68000


    Aug 27, 2008
    The correct dispute would be to file it on eBay first. Why he filed it on PayPal makes no sense to me.
  4. northy124 macrumors 68020


    Nov 18, 2007
    Yes they do normally side with buyer regardless of any other facts :( but they wouldn't do it without making sure that the goods are send back to the seller first (at least that it how it has gone for me in past).

    Personally I'd try and stop PayPal from sending money until you get phone back or if already done complain your ass off to PayPal and seek legal advice... IDK if the legal advice is worth it but never know :)
  5. jshort thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 8, 2009
    I've had something go wrong the last few times I've tried to sell ANYthing on eBay.. the buyer has all the power. Even when it comes to feedback.. if your auction says something like "payment must be received in 24 hrs, must have at least 10 feedback scores, etc" and the buyer takes 5 days to pay.. you still can't even leave him negative feedback. Your options are neutral and positive.. and it all but makes you click positive.

    eBay wonders why their business continues to decline.. it would seem they need to get their act together with a quickness
  6. Tara Luvs Apple macrumors 6502a

    Mar 16, 2008
    Probably because there is nothing wrong the phone and the buyer just wants the money back.

    I have filed a dispute with PayPal about a magazine charging me. I never was on auto-renew and they never had my permission to take the money. Plus, I never received confirmation from either about a pending charged. I only received the receipt after it was already charged to my account. PayPal said they could not help me and would not give me a refund. When I went through to the magazine, they gave it back to me.
  7. whateverandever macrumors 6502a

    Nov 8, 2006
    Use the PayPal dispute process to ask for the phone back. PayPal won't side with the buyer until everything has been exhausted -- they'll probably require a tracking number of the return shipment from the buyer.
  8. j3yq macrumors 6502


    Dec 16, 2007
  9. Tara Luvs Apple macrumors 6502a

    Mar 16, 2008
    Yeah, but just because there is a tracking number does not mean that the phone is in the box! ;)
  10. drober30 macrumors 6502a

    Jul 5, 2007
    They will side with the buyer. They will tie you up for a week while they "investigate" the claim. The buyer will have to ship back the phone before paypal refunds his money.

    I had the same thing happen on my last iPhone and the guy was in Gemany. He never did ship back the phone so paypal released the funds back to me. I think they get ten days to return the item.
  11. jshort thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 8, 2009
    It was the in the usual pending status.. which was pending either his positive feedback or 3 business days to pass. Now it's in a hold and not pending.
  12. OceanView macrumors 65816

    Sep 16, 2005
    that sucks.
    I've never had this experience but it scares me and makes me think twice about selling on eBay.

    Hope you get it resolved.
  13. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6


    Aug 17, 2007
    Agreed. Stories like this make me avoid ebay like the plague.
  14. jshort thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 8, 2009
    Well I'm happy to have the iPhone back as I'm sure I'd be able to sell it to somebody that speaks english.. I just doubt he'll use the same care that I used in packaging it in the original box, etc when I sent it to him.

    As long as paypal will require him to send it back, I guess I'm okay with a refund. It'd just be hard to jump back in bed with the eBay / paypal folks again.
  15. Tara Luvs Apple macrumors 6502a

    Mar 16, 2008
    I do not necessarily think it is siding with the buyer that is the main problem. Of course, the poster would want his/her iPhone sold, but if the buyer gets his/her money back, then the poster wants the phone.
  16. Staindsoul macrumors 6502


    Apr 13, 2010
    They WILL side with the buyer, believe me. I have a Top Rated Powerseller with over 800+ feedback and a buyer with +1 feedback will when a dispute, no matter what. They really screw over sellers. Such a shame.
  17. jshort thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 8, 2009
    You think they'll at least make him return the phone before giving him his money back?
  18. lorenwade macrumors 68000


    Aug 27, 2008

    And hopefully it's returned the way it was.
  19. Tara Luvs Apple macrumors 6502a

    Mar 16, 2008
    Yes. However, there is no guarantee that the phone will be in the box or that the buyer will return it in working condition. :(
  20. northy124 macrumors 68020


    Nov 18, 2007
    This is where you record the unboxing and if there is any foul play you forward it to PayPal and they should release the funds back to you :)
  21. KBS756 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 27, 2009
    I have sold on ebay for over 3 years (diamond jewelry and watches, through several ids [I basically did the templates and listings for the ids]) and I had issues like the one you are having happen many times, Unfortunately as has been noted here before eBay sides with the buyer 99.99% of the time ive had them return the buyers money and let them keep a 800 dollar item, without even asking them to ship it back, and ontop of all this i got a very unfair negative feedback.

    And unfortunately the suggestion of video taping the opening of the box or sending pictures (when i tried at least) doesnt seem to work because eBay reguards sellers even the highest ranked ones as scam artists and sellers even with no feedbacks what so ever as god...

    Gluck getting your phone or ur money back, Try calling ebay and paypal and yelling at them often (their customer service is usually useless but ive found bein active talking to them does have some effect on the outcome)
  22. mistertomlinson macrumors 6502

    Dec 22, 2007
    I think this guy just wants the i4.

    I sold an unactivated/unjailbroken iPhone 3GS a few weeks ago and sent an email to the buyer telling him he should be able to activate it on iTunes or at the AT&T store. A couple days goes by after he received the iPhone and he leaves positive feedback. He didn't have any trouble.
  23. h1w1nd macrumors member

    Aug 22, 2009
    I feel terrible for sellers that have to deal with paypal...

    99% of the time paypal sides with the buyer and gives them there money back. It's like they don't even care about what the seller says in the dispute. There only concerned with the buyers side.
  24. calvy macrumors 65816

    Sep 17, 2007
    i rarely sell stuff on ebay anymore. Craigslist is always my first choice. I worry about getting fake cash or something in a face to face meeting, but i think the odds of that are lower than the odds of someone trying to pull this scheme across eBay/paypal.

    Please keep us updated on this OP. I hope for the best.
  25. Shanewilliams macrumors 6502a

    Apr 3, 2010
    I agree with you somewhat, paypal is known to side with the buyer. I always pull the money out of paypal as soon as someone pays for an item. Awhile back I sold an item on eBay, as is no warranties of any type. Buyer paid for the item around 10 am, I shipped when I went to lunch that day and was not able to get to a computer until that evening when I got home to post the tracking number from fedex to paypal. From the dispute on paypal around 4pm the buyer filed a dispute and paypal froze the money in my account. Meanwhile the item was still in route! Well, this was 5 months ago, the buyer has their item and of course he flat out lied to paypal and I've never got a dime of my money back! So, paypal really is a craps shoot, but there's no one out there to compete with them so you really have no choice. Ever since this incident, I've pulled my money out immediately. Just make sure you keel every form of communication with the buyer that you have and best of luck!

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