9 min article

Seller protections

When you sell on eBay, we'll protect you from abusive buying behaviour and from events outside your control.

Frequently Asked Questions

 

How am I protected from abusive buyers?

If eBay finds a buyer's behaviour abusive, we will take action on the buyer and remove negative and neutral Feedback and defects, including opened cases in service metrics.

What if something happens that is outside of my control?

We will protect you by removing negative and neutral Feedback and defects when things happen outside your control, such as weather or carrier delays, or when the item arrives late but tracking shows you sent it on time.

Read more about seller protections

Protections for Above Standard and Top Rated sellers

If you're delivering on your service promises and creating good buying experiences, you'll have access to additional seller protections.

To be eligible, you need to be meeting eBay's seller performance standards:

  • Your seller level is Above Standard or eBay Top Rated; and
  • You don't have a 'Very High' rating in any category of your service metrics.

A buyer falsely claims an item was not as described

When you report the buyer - opens in new window or tab and we determine the buyer made a false claim:

  • We'll give you up to AU $9.00 per transaction to help cover the return postage costs you paid. It may take up to 60 days for this amount to be credited to your account.
  • We'll automatically remove negative and neutral Feedback, defects, and open cases in service metrics.

Ensure you have completed the return and issued a refund to the buyer. You can also use the Report buyer option within the return request.

An item is returned after it was used or damaged by the buyer

If you accepted a buyer's return request but the item is returned in a different condition than it was originally sent:

  • You can deduct up to 50% from the refund to recover the lost value of the item. See partial refund guidelines.
  • We'll take care of any issues associated with the item being returned by working directly with the buyer and by removing any negative and neutral Feedback and open cases in service metrics

Ensure you issue the partial refund within 3 business days after receiving the returned item. You can do this from the return request.

  • If you don't refund the buyer and return tracking shows the item was delivered, eBay may automatically issue a full refund on your behalf.

If eBay steps in to help with the return at any stage, you will no longer be able to issue a partial refund to the buyer.


Learn more about refunding the buyer.

If an item is returned with significant damage or the wrong item is returned, we may be able to help.

 

Protections for all sellers

Abusive buying activity

When we determine that a buyer has violated the abusive buyer policy, we'll remove any associated negative or neutral Feedback and defects, including opened cases in service metrics. For abusive buyers, we may also limit the ability to file return requests on the eBay site. In serious cases or repeated abusive behaviour, we may suspend the buyer's account.

You can help us by reporting the buyer - opens in new window or tab and clearly describing what they are doing. This will help us investigate potential policy violations and take actions to protect you.

See the abusive buyer policy for buyer behaviour that is not allowed.

A buyer retracted their bid or didn't pay

  • If a buyer retracts their bid and it disrupts your auction, you can choose to cancel the order and we'll remove any negative or neutral Feedback and cancelled transaction defects
  • If the buyer doesn't pay and you cancel the order, we'll remove negative and neutral Feedback and cancelled transaction defects, and you'll receive credit for any applicable fees
  • To prevent unpaid items, you can require immediate payment from buyers

A buyer demanded something not offered in the original listing

You never have to agree to any changes to the terms in your listing (e.g. adding additional items or discounts). If a buyer demands a change to what you originally offered, you can choose to either cancel the order, or you can complete the transaction under the original terms. We'll remove negative or neutral Feedback and cancelled transaction defects when we can see the buyer's demands in eBay messages.

 

Events outside your control

An item arrived late but tracking shows that you sent it on time

We automatically adjust your late shipment rate and remove negative and neutral Feedback when:

  • The carrier scan shows you sent the item within your handling time, even if it arrives late
  • The carrier scan shows the item arrived by the estimated delivery, even if you sent it late

If the buyer doesn't indicate the shipment was late, it won't count as a late shipment even if there is no tracking or the carrier didn't scan the shipment.

Customs and international carrier issues

If you're sending an item internationally and it receives an acceptance scan within your handling time, we'll adjust your late shipment rate and remove negative or neutral Feedback.

Severe weather, natural disaster or carrier disruptions caused the item to arrive late

We automatically adjust your late shipment rate, remove cancelled transaction defects and remove negative and neutral Feedback when:

  • Your shipment was affected by delivery delays caused by weather, a natural disaster or other disruptions to carrier services. These may be listed on eBay Announcements - opens in new window or tab
  • The shipment receives a carrier scan within your handling time, even if the item arrives late
  • The shipment receives a delivery scan within the estimated delivery date range, even if you sent it late
  • We instruct you to hold a shipment or cancel the transaction

 

Other protections

Seller performance standards

Fair performance evaluation

To measure your overall performance accurately, we look at your performance as a whole.

  • The transaction defect rate won't count in your seller performance status until you have transactions with defects from at least 4 different buyers within your evaluation period
  • You won't be subject to consequences for service metrics when your rate is under 1% in a specific category or if you have had fewer than 10 'item not as described' or 'item not received' requests from unique buyers
  • Keep in mind that buyers don't see your defect rate

Learn more about seller performance standards.

eBay Money Back Guarantee requests

If we close an eBay Money Back Guarantee case or appeal request in your favour, we'll remove all Feedback and defects related to that transaction.

If a buyer reports that an item hasn't been received

If you send an item within your stated handling time and you upload tracking information before the estimated delivery date from one of eBay's integrated carriers that shows evidence of successful delivery, you're protected.

If a buyer reports that an item isn't as described

If the buyer submits a return request because an item isn't as described in the listing, you're protected from negative and neutral Feedback if you offer free returns, accept the return, and give a refund.

If a buyer doesn't send a return back

In cases where we don't receive proof of shipment from your buyer while the return request is active and the case is then automatically closed, we'll protect you by removing any negative or neutral Feedback for that transaction.

Duplicate claims

Buyers can't use more than one resolution method to get a refund. After selecting a resolution method, a buyer is required to use that process for the duration of the resolution effort.

  • If a buyer files a chargeback, any open eBay Money Back Guarantee request, open order cancellation or open return request for the same transaction are immediately closed
  • If a buyer files a PayPal Buyer Protection case, the buyer can't open an eBay Money Back Guarantee request for the same transaction
 

Protections for payment disputes

If a buyer files a payment dispute and the transaction is eligible for protection under our Payment dispute seller protections, we'll cover the amount of the dispute, waive the dispute fee, and remove negative and neutral Feedback related to the transaction.

Learn more about seller protections for payment disputes.

 

Eligibility for protections

If you do any of the following, you are not eligible for any seller protections:

  • Operate with a false identity
  • Fail to follow through with your service promises (such as not honouring your return policy)
  • Have a history of serious policy violations, such as selling counterfeits, using prohibited forms of third-party fulfilment or taking sales off eBay
  • Abuse or fraudulently use the seller protections – for example, you have a history of:
    • Reporting false 'Item not as described' requests when you had not described the item correctly
    • Unfairly giving too low a partial refund. A partial refund should only be used to recoup the actual lost value of the item when it is returned in a different condition than the original item.

For more information, see our Seller protections abuse policy.

Transactions not eligible for protections

Most transactions on eBay are covered by seller protections. However, the following types of items and listings are not covered:

  • Items that violate eBay's prohibited and restricted items policies
  • Items in categories excluded from eBay Money Back Guarantee. Some examples include vehicles, heavy machinery, real estate, Websites & Businesses for Sale, Classified Ads and services, Tickets, Digital Goods and Intangibles, with the exception of digital gift cards
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