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Responding to a request when your buyer doesn't receive an item

Most sales go smoothly, but occasionally there may be a problem. We help buyers and sellers work together to resolve issues with transactions.

If your buyer reports that they didn't receive an item, we give you options for responding to the buyer. Once a buyer opens a request for a refund or replacement when they haven't received an item, you must reply within 3 business days or the buyer can ask us to step in and help. Learn more about the eBay Money Back Guarantee.

Provide tracking information

If a buyer opens a request about an item that they haven't received, you can resolve the request by providing proof of delivery. We ask you to provide tracking information that shows:

  1. The delivery status of the item as delivered.

  2. The date of delivery (which shows you sent the item within your stated handling time).

  3. The buyer's address, displaying at least the town/city or postal code of the address shown on either the Order Details page or PayPal's Transaction Details page.

  4. For items valued at $750 or more, proof of recipient's signature.

If the tracking information shows that the item is still in transit, we may ask the buyer to wait.

If you sent an item without tracking information, you can ask us to step in and help. We review the situation, but may still find you responsible for refunding the buyer if the item hasn't yet arrived.

Refund the buyer

If the buyer asked for a refund and you haven't yet sent the item, refund the buyer, including the cost of the item and postage paid by the buyer.

Once the request for a refund is complete, you'll receive a final value fee credit.

Offer another solution

If the buyer still wants the item, and you can provide it, send the item immediately. Upload the tracking information to My eBay or Seller Hub, so the buyer knows when the item will arrive.

You can always offer another solution, as well. It's important that you and the buyer try to come to an agreement. Make sure you contact the buyer through Messages in My eBay or Seller Hub, so there's a record of communications and we know the status of the request.

More about refunds

Once a buyer opens an eBay Money Back Guarantee request for an item they didn't receive, funds related to the sale in your PayPal account may be put on hold. When you resolve the situation with the buyer, or we find in your favour, the funds are again available for use.

If you've agreed to refund the buyer for an item that wasn't received, you must do so within three business days.

If the buyer doesn't receive the refund within three business days, the buyer can ask us to step in and help.

If a buyer asks us to step in and help – either because you didn't respond to a refund request, or you and the buyer can't reach an agreement – we review the request and come to a decision. If we find in favour of the buyer, we refund the buyer directly and seek reimbursement for the amount of the refund from you. That amount includes the cost of the item plus the postage costs paid by the buyer. We either ask PayPal to remove the refund amount from your PayPal account, or add a charge to your monthly selling invoice. Learn more about reimbursements.

You can appeal within 30 days from when we make a decision by providing new documentation. For example, you may have proof of delivery documentation that you didn't have previously.

Contact Customer Service

If you're looking for more help or have a question to ask, please contact us.

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