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Coolsplash: Looking for input on Bricklink Transaction

CoolsplashCoolsplash Member Posts: 935
edited December 2012 in Buying & Selling Topics
I have been buying from people all over the world and even from a few friends here on Brickset. Here is the problem I am facing these days:

I ordered some items worth around USD 575 from someone in the US, and paid the Bricklink Invoice via Paypal. The package was shipped on 6-9th of September using USPS Priority Mail and usually it takes under 20 days or so to get the items delivered at my doorstep. But, its been over a month now and I have not received the items. Tracking says the package had left the US on 9th September and thats it. Been checking with USPS and local Post services and no news yet.

So my question, how can I go ahead with Paypal resolution about this? I know Paypal prefers Buyers always. Would I get full refund as safe keeping as I do not want to ruin my relationship with this dealer as he has become a good friend. But if I sit and wait then Paypal won't cater to my case. Am I going wrong somewhere with this. I need some solid advice on this from my brethren here. What are my options???? And also, what if Insurance value is not more then 200-250 USD???

Comments

  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 20,309
    If he is now a good friend and it is lost in the post, then surely he will refund you anyway and put the claim in for the insurance he took out.
  • roxioroxio UKMember Posts: 1,379
    Get the exact shipping date and maximum shipping time allowed between the 2 countries before raising dispute - could be in customs ?
    20 days is probably working days which is approximately one calendar month.
    If you paid the seller for insurance he is responsible for adequate cover. Worst case package is lost, paypal would refund you and he would have to claim from carrier.
  • y2joshy2josh Member Posts: 2,002
    Has he opened an inquiry with the Post Office yet? I sent a Black Pearl to Australia once which was lost somewhere along the way and I had to open an inquiry before I could put in a claim on the purchased insurance. Of course, USPS/Australia Post found the package at this point and I offered to refund the buyer for shipping, but she wound up being very understanding and didn't fault me for the shipping trouble. Still, you should make sure your seller has filed an inquiry and they'll likely track the package down for you (although, if it was sent First Class, I don't know how easily that can be achieved, since tracking stops after it leaves the States).
  • CoolsplashCoolsplash Member Posts: 935
    But thing is, he has put up Insurance for just $100....and its been over a month now the package shows no sign in the US or in my country. And I did get it checked in Customs for any problem or disputes but none.

    How long before Paypal will entertain my case? Because the seller has put up investigation with USPS and was told to wait about 8-10 days for confirmation. Post services over here say it never reached my country and maybe got left at some other transit destination so USPS will know only.

    I just need to know my options and how much time I have to file a case with Paypal and what sort of a refund I can get via Paypal.
  • dragonhawkdragonhawk USMember Posts: 633
    edited October 2012
    From Paypal website:
    "
    If you decide to open a dispute, be aware that you must open it within 45 days of the date you made your payment, and that you and the seller will have 20 days to work things out.

    And if you choose to escalate your dispute to a claim, you must do so within 20 days of opening the dispute, or it will be closed automatically.
    "

    https://www.paypal.com/us/webapps/mpp/security/buyer-protection-resolution

    I say open a dispute case on day 44 so the seller has an extra 20 days to track your items
  • roxioroxio UKMember Posts: 1,379
    Keep him updated of what you are doing, communication is key - but if bricklink invoice said insurance was included and he only got $100 of cover for $575 of goods, that is his problem. His claim on USPS is separate to any PayPal dispute you open. Unless it turns up he could be seriously out of pocket.
  • LegoFanTexasLegoFanTexas TexasMember Posts: 8,409
    The above posters are correct... Before 45 days are up, you'll need to open a dispute with PayPal. This gives you a few weeks to work it out with the seller before it comes a claim.

    Understand a PayPal Dispute is differernt to a PayPal Claim. A Claim means to turn it over to PayPal for a final decision. A Dispute is a way for you and the seller to communicate via the PayPal system and work together for a resolution. PayPal does nothing, but keep records in the event it becomes a Claim.

    I've been on both sides, as a buyer and seller, in the process. If you have a good seller, then ultimately he'll make you good. If you don't, it may end up a claim.

    I recently had a shipment from Europe that the seller sent surface mail, took almost 2 months to arrive, so we were well into the PayPal Dispute process when the package finally arrived.

    When I did, I closed the dispute and left the seller positive feedback, then sent him a message and suggested never using surface mail across the ocean for items paid by PayPal, because of the 45 day rule.

    I've had packages that I've sent get lost, or take a very long time to arrive that I've had to refund. Don't want to of course, but that isn't really a choice I have. A seller has to take care of the buyer at all times.
  • BanditBandit Member Posts: 890
    I've ordered stuff from amazon overseas to here in the US, and sometimes it's taken almost 2 months to arrive via USPS. So maybe there's still hope...
  • momof2boys99momof2boys99 Member Posts: 322
    Hi Pakistan Lego friend.....I am going off topic...so I apologize. I know I gave you my advice in a PM.

    I just though of something. If I get flagged for off topic that is o.k. I don't do overseas too much, but several overseas buyers always ask to lower the value or mark as a gift. This could come back to bite the seller in a situation such as this. You would be screwed basically. Am I right?

  • akunthitaakunthita USAMember Posts: 1,038
    Coolsplash, did you request the seller to mark the package to be only worth $100 so you can avoid paying custom fees? If that is the case it is possible that your package is being held in customs while they investigate the actual value. This has happened to other sellers before when the package was obvious to custom officials that it was worth more. And yeah, this could mean trouble.

    I know custom fees hurt, but you should never ask sellers to declare a lower value. It is considered fraud, and your friend can get in serious trouble. Also, if the package gets lost for some other reasons, your friend will only be able to recover $100. Again, if this was by your request, you really shouldn't expect him to return you the full amount. If you asked him to take such a risk without him knowing what he was getting into, then you should be willing to take the risk yourself as well.

    Hopefully your package will turn up soon, and this was all just a scare, but in case it doesn't show up, communication with the seller is key. Especially if you have asked him to declare a lower value. Although technically you could probably screw the seller for the full amount as PP tend to side with the buyer (although not always), it would not be ethical. Also, if you made this purchase though BrickLink or eBay, it will be all over their forum, and other sellers will block you as well.

    Again, this is just assuming that you made the request. If the seller decided on his own to mark the package at a lower value, then that is his own problem. But I would still wait close to the 45 days before opening anything as the package could still be in transit. That way it may you are giving it some time to show up just fine without risking a friendship.... (c:
  • CoolsplashCoolsplash Member Posts: 935
    Ok so here is the deal. I did ask the Seller to mark it as Gift but he didnt do that but he did put up insurance to cover just 100 USD and seemingly wrote a lower value on the package. Last tracking shows it left transit to Pakistan on 9th of September and both of us don't have a clue over this. The seller told me that the claim would be handled by USPS and I can get just 100 USD due to the Insurance. Is it possible he can get full claim from USPS/Paypal and just throw me 100 bucks for my trouble?

    And I am in touch with the seller on daily basis and I do not think he is willing to help me with more, and I think, he messed it up on his own....its a gut feeling I don't know...I can say this because at first he was willing and eager to sell the items to me at a discounted price but then it seemed he didn't had much clue about shipping costs, so he quoted me a figure and payment was made to him...but then he emailed me saying he burned up in shipping cost and will have to pay from his own pocket....and then he raises the price of remaining item in his BL store....so you know....I have a feeling he is screwing with me in some ways....

    Advice me guys, you have the whole situation in front of you now, so please advice me what to do and how to take this further ahead as my partner who handles my Paypal transactions is breathing down my neck for this....






  • forumreaderforumreader Member Posts: 97
    I don't know why he would mark just $100 insurance on a $500+ order. That seems fishy; why even get insurance at all then?

    It sounds like you are going to need to either do a dispute or a claim. See LFT's post for info on the two.

    Unless he has trackable proof the item was delivered to you, you "should" win a claim from Paypal. Whatever you do, do it to the letter of Paypal's process.
  • BrickDancerBrickDancer Dunes of TatooineMember Posts: 3,639
    edited October 2012
    I can't help but feel bad for both parties. Buyer didn't do anything wrong so should be fulfilled and made right in the end regardless of what happened to the package.

    However, the seller tried to help out by selling & shipping to Pakistan when very few people would risk international delivery, nevermind into unfriendly territory. He didn't realize the full heavy cost for shipment until he received your payment. Instead of jacking up the price on you, he bit the bullet and honored the same price you both shook on. He marked it as 'gift' to help the buyer avoid further charges from tax and duties. He has documentation that shows the package was sent out as required and in timely fashion. He can do no more and no less at this point to help any further, so what do you expect him to do?

    Worst case scenario, the package never shows up and Paypal refunds your initial payment in full. But I believe it is wrong to expect the seller to also provide the $100 insurance rebate from the lost package. In all likelihood, the seller has already lost out on the deal based on low estimation of the shipping cost. Not to mention that actual goods (Lego sets), as he will not be recompensated for those losses. As well as the time and effort in talking about, processing, packing and shipping out the order. The seller will get 'Zero' compensation in the end regardless, so why ask for more?

    My advice is to be patient with the seller, as it was a friendly transaction when it started based on helping one another. Your money will be back in your pocket if the Lego doesn't show up, but let Paypal fix it in the end. There's no need to insinuate someone is wronging you without confirming it or at least have considerable evidence to back up the specific claim.

    Just my 2 pence from an audience member with no real stake in the matter.
  • prof1515prof1515 EarthMember Posts: 1,561

    Ok so here is the deal. I did ask the Seller to mark it as Gift but he didnt do that but he did put up insurance to cover just 100 USD and seemingly wrote a lower value on the package. Last tracking shows it left transit to Pakistan on 9th of September and both of us don't have a clue over this. The seller told me that the claim would be handled by USPS and I can get just 100 USD due to the Insurance. Is it possible he can get full claim from USPS/Paypal and just throw me 100 bucks for my trouble?

    And I am in touch with the seller on daily basis and I do not think he is willing to help me with more, and I think, he messed it up on his own....its a gut feeling I don't know...I can say this because at first he was willing and eager to sell the items to me at a discounted price but then it seemed he didn't had much clue about shipping costs, so he quoted me a figure and payment was made to him...but then he emailed me saying he burned up in shipping cost and will have to pay from his own pocket....and then he raises the price of remaining item in his BL store....so you know....I have a feeling he is screwing with me in some ways....

    Advice me guys, you have the whole situation in front of you now, so please advice me what to do and how to take this further ahead as my partner who handles my Paypal transactions is breathing down my neck for this....

    I don't understand why the seller had such problems. It's not that hard to get a proper estimate on the shipping cost. It sounds fishy to me but then he might just be an utter moron.

    Open the Paypal dispute, contact the seller to let him know you have and when before your window for filing a claim expires, be sure to file the claim if it's not resolved by that time. In the future, avoid buying from someone who can't get you a definitive cost on shipping. It's really not that hard a thing for them to do. :-)


  • roxioroxio UKMember Posts: 1,379
    I also feel for both parties, but I also think they are both in the wrong - buyer for asking item to be marked gift / low value and seller agreeing. If it arrives all good, but if it doesn't turn up the seller is going to be peeved at being $500ish out of pocket
  • CoolsplashCoolsplash Member Posts: 935
    And yet in my last email I told the Seller that I do not want the money back and will be more then happy to get the items at deal prices. I just wanted to file the dispute just to be sure I am not screwed over on this. I know the Seller has helped me ALOT marking the package as Gift and wrote a lower invoice value to help me save in Customs duties, but its not a big deal guys. Lots of people have done the same for me and I get everything in time, safe and sound.

    But I felt something fishy especially the Insurance value the Seller marked. What if I never get the package, he gets the full claim and hands me the 100 bucks and dusts himself off and walks away. So I get to bear the remaining when it can clearly be negligence or a scam to begin with. That is why I was wondering if I should file a dispute with Paypal just to keep the seller active and to help me with this problem.

    And @BrickDancer, I know I hail from Pakistan and its not a friendly zone or safe, but we get stuff from all over the world nice and safe. I myself buy Lego from all parts of the world and nothing gets lost or ruined. Its just a matter of perspective and thinking people have to work with people hailing from my region. But that is a different topic. But I appreciate your post.

    And like @roxio said, if it all turns up its good, the money or refund I would receive from Paypal will be paid back to the Seller, as I think that is part of Paypal Protection law being the middle man in a deal. To guarantee both parties get a fair hearing and smooth transaction.

  • y2joshy2josh Member Posts: 2,002
    Just as a point of reference, what you've asked the seller to do or what he did for you on his own (not sure which way it was) is Customs Fraud, and he could potentially get in serious trouble for it.
  • nkx1nkx1 Member Posts: 719
    ^You're referring to US Customs I assume? I can't imagine someone would be extradited to Pakistan from the US for prosecution regarding some petty Lego sets lol.
  • y2joshy2josh Member Posts: 2,002
    edited October 2012
    Yes. It's US Customs that would be most interested in it if they found out about it and then felt it was worth pursuing. Regardless, it's still illegal.
  • dougtsdougts Oregon, USAMember Posts: 4,129
    if the insurance was purchased for $100 then how could the seller possibly get more, and then also throw you $100 ? that doesn't really make sense. but i suppose since you only have his word on that, you are saying it is possible the seller got $100 insurnace and is telling you he only got $100 so he can just keep the rest.? am i understanding your concern correctly?

    in the end the insurance part shouldn't really matter to you anyway, as there are only 2 reasonable outcomes for you to consider

    1) item shows up, everyone is happy
    2) you get full paypal refund, restoring you to your pre-sale state. seller gets nothing, something, or all of his money back via insurance, covering his losses on the actual sets. what he gets from insurance does not affect you at all.
  • BrickDancerBrickDancer Dunes of TatooineMember Posts: 3,639
    edited October 2012
    ^Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think the $100 insurance is given free by default when shipping by USPS International? So basically additional insurance was not opted for.
  • y2joshy2josh Member Posts: 2,002
    ^Only if it's shipped Express Mail International. Priority Mail International or First Class features no included insurance.
  • BrickDancerBrickDancer Dunes of TatooineMember Posts: 3,639
    ^Thanks for clarifying.
  • doriansdaddoriansdad CTCMember Posts: 1,337
    ^^ Priority Mail International does come with up to $200 automatic indemnity determined by weight of the package. From usps.com:

    "Uninsured Priority Mail International parcels include indemnity against loss, damage, or missing contents. Coverage is calculated based on the weight of the parcel or the value of the contents, whichever is less. You can purchase insured mail service if available for an additional fee. Additional insurance limits vary by country. When international insurance is purchased, it replaces indemnity coverage. Individual country prohibitions and restrictions apply."
  • jadeirenejadeirene US, CaliforniaMember Posts: 475
    ^ Yes, but if the customs form value was listed for only $100, there is no way that USPS will pay out insurance for $200.
  • y2joshy2josh Member Posts: 2,002
    edited October 2012
    ^^Just checked into that and that is correct. Interestingly enough, eBay doesn't mention this at all when you're printing your label and instead encourages you to purchase their in-house insurance. I suppose I shouldn't be shocked.
  • dougtsdougts Oregon, USAMember Posts: 4,129
    ^ i always purchase insurance for items over a certain threshhold i am not willing to front the risk on. my past experience in filing claims with USPS is...frustrating, slow, manual, and time consuming.

    Conversely, I filed my first claim this week on Ebay's shipcover insurance. (this was damage, not loss) started claim by clicking button right from order details page. fill out a few dropdowns and fill-ins, indicate how much, up to my total amount, I am requesting, then hit submit. very quickly get message saying they will contact buyer to verify (of course i had already been in contact with buyer before knowing to start the claim, so i told buyer he would be contacted). next day buyer tells me he got message and responded. same day i get message saying my claim was approved and that the money will be in my paypal account in 1 to 3 days. i then message back to buyer to discuss the options to resolve his damaged purchase.

    entire process was entirely within the ebay application, extremely speedy, and very intuitive and simple. I'm sure it's not the cheapest coverage out there, and I can honestly say I haven't read all the fine print too closely. but the rates are very reasonable for what I ship, and the end result was absolutely easy to use and rquired very little investment of time and energy. would definitely recommend.
  • doriansdaddoriansdad CTCMember Posts: 1,337
    ^ Easy claims is the great benefit of using shipcover. Of course the downside is they do not cover shipping....great name they chose for themselves lol. I self insure for shipping and let shipcover take the risk on the balance when shipping overseas. I have used USPS and shipsurance in the past but just thinking about all the paperwork needed for a claim gives me a migraine.
  • dougtsdougts Oregon, USAMember Posts: 4,129
    edited October 2012
    ^ yeah, exactly. worst case ill eat the shipping charges (which are usually about 20-40% of my LEGO order totals on international shipments) on the reship, but at least slipcover will reimburse me for the actual inventory. in the end i lose a little on the deal, but i make the customer whole, which is the right thing to do. costs of doing business, you just have to build it into your budget.
  • CoolsplashCoolsplash Member Posts: 935
    Thank you guys for your feedback, I did not know what and how to go ahead with this as I do not want to mess up with this seller. But I think I have no choice but to open a dispute and then see how it goes. I will keep you guys posted.
  • roxioroxio UKMember Posts: 1,379
    It will probably result in a full refund to you and a possible end of relationship with the seller, particularly if he produces evidence in the dispute of you being complicit in the gift/low value customs label, although he is still ultimately responsible and could have refused.
    Hope the outcome is amicable.
  • CoolsplashCoolsplash Member Posts: 935
    Forgot to update my brethren here over this so as follows:

    1. I had filed a dispute with Paypal while the Seller told me to wait to hear from Paypal and USPS as they are investigating, but I lost the dispute/case and we were left to resolve the matter on our own.
    2. I asked for a full refund from which the Seller agreed to refund 80% and I had to agree on that.
    3. The package did get delivered after another 2-3 weeks of waiting since we both had lost hope on this and after the refund was made to me.
    4. It seems the Seller used Flat Rate shipping instead of Priority Mail as former service takes ages to deliver and has a chance to get lost. And since Flat Rate is cheaper, that service was used but I had paid for Priority Mail with Insurance.
    5. When I had received the items, I refunded the money to the Seller and the case was closed with a friendly wave :)



    AnseltheCattk79
  • AnseltheCatAnseltheCat Member Posts: 141
    Glad to hear you finally received your items. Good on you for informing the seller and returning the money.
  • CCCCCC UKMember Posts: 20,309
    ^^ Presumably the seller also refunded you the shipping costs if you paid for Priority Mail with Insurance, but only got flat rate.
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