Paypal Consumer Protection Inadequate

Astute UK consumers shouldn’t rely on the Paypal’s Protection for Buyers. This includes Paypal Buyer Protection for eligible ebay sales and their Buyer Complaint Policy.

A quick search of the internet will confirm that Paypal has a tendency to close disputes for reasons only known to themselves. In addition, their Protection for Buyers imposes over-restrictive time limits, has significant exclusions and has some major limitations:

Over-Restrictive Time Limits

If you have a problem you need to be quick off the mark. You must start the dispute process within 45 days payment and if need to escalate, you have to do so within 20 days of raising the dispute. This is not enough time. For example, you might not discover that the item you bought is fake until it goes wrong after several weeks, or you may be advised that the item will not be delivered until back in stock, which may take a month or so.

Significant Exclusions

It is important to realise that not all purchases are covered by Paypal’s Protection for Buyers. There are exclusions and this isn’t always clear.

Paypal Buyer Complaint Policy Limitations

The Buyer Complaint Policy which provides protection for transactions outside ebay also has two significant limitations:

  1. Paypal will not make a decision on whether an item is “not as described”. For example, if you buy a new CD and it turns out to be used or is damaged, you can use the process to make a dispute, but you are on your own. Paypal will not get involved and won’t make a decision either way.
  2. For items that are not delivered, Paypal will only refund your money if they can recover this from the seller.

If you have to use Paypal then follow our advice to make your Paypal transaction as safe as possible.

Leave a Comment

2 comments… add one
  • Paul Waterhouse 16 April, 1:20 pm

    I am currently fighting tooth and nail with Paypal over an item that I bought on eBay that didn’t work when it arrived. Paypal claimed that I had waited over 30 days before taking action and filing a dispute with them. In fact it was less than 8 days between me taking delivery and reporting the item as being faulty to the owner, then another 10 days before taking up the matter with Paypal.

    I feel like my consumer rights have been trampled and I am out of pocket almost £150. Despite numerous phone calls and emails to Paypal I am getting nowhere fast! Trying to communicate with the same person twice is an unachievable goal so I have to explain my whole case again and again – and this despite everything being logged on their system!!

    I say vote with your feet. As soon as I get a satisfactory resolution (or I get bored and tired of fighting!!) I’ll be closing my Paypal account.

  • jamie 18 March, 2:25 am

    i recently bought a very fake battery off an ebay seller claiming ‘100% genuine’ apple batteries. after receiving the battery, i noticed it was like the one i was replacing, different type fonts and a sticker with ‘ldl’ printed on there. so after jumping through all the hoops for ‘buyers protection’ scheme, even taking the battery into an apple store to get an apple genius to look it over and write up a report of the fakeness, i still received an email saying ‘We have concluded our investigation into your case. Unfortunately, at this time we are unable to decide this claim in your favour.’ no explanation as to why! the seller on (oz-hypermart) is still selling the ‘100% genuine’ batteries with recent feedback mentioning ‘Batteries are fakes and not very good ones, but i received full refund so thanks.’ i just wonder where he got his refund from? chances are it wasn’t paypal or ebay, the crusaders against counterfeit items! paypal needs an honest competitor in the online payment market as i have no where else to go when i buy fake goods on ebay!