Unconfirmed addressee wins eBay auction. What should I do?

I listed a Wii here. It included the line:

Of course, :rolleyes: the “winner” has no feedback, just opened their eBay account yesterday, and made an immediate PayPal credit card payment from an unconfirmed address. I sent them an email saying that I would only ship to confirmed addresses and that I would ship when they got that taken care of. My suspicion is that they never will.


How long should I give them to get confirmed? I’m pretty firm on not shipping to an unconfirmed address unless someone gives me a really compelling reason to change my mind.

Is eBay going to gig me regardless of this situation?

I know that I can do a Second Chance Offer to the next highest bidder with a Buy It Now for the price that they bid but is that deal only available to them or is it listed in the listings? Will I being paying double eBay fees that way?

How can I refund my “Winner’s” payment if it comes to that? In PayPal, the transaction is merely listed as “Complete”.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

I’m not a paypal or eBay expert, having used both but never having had problems with either. But it seems to be that communication with eBay would be a good start, and should it ever come to blows, establish your good-faith efforts early on.

You need to go through a long (several week), tedious process to get your fees refunded from ebay, but other than that, I’ve never had a problem with the process. Just start the “dispute” process now.

I had a live chat with eBay support and his recommendation was:

Wait 7 days.
Cancel the transaction. I’m not sure exactly what this means. I think he meant refund through PayPal
File an Unpaid Item Dispute
Get a “Final Value Fees” refund.

Of course, he didn’t mention that it was a several week process. I assume that I relist my item right after the 7 days is up and I have 2 auction’s worth of fees on my account for a while. Of course, there’s always the chance that my buyer will come through and get his address confirmed but I’m not holding my breath.

First, go into PayPal and refuse the payment. Send the buyer an email stating you require a confirmed email address.

Expect no response. This has scam written all over it.

By “refuse”, do you mean refund? The status of the payment is “Complete” even though I never touched it.

Yes. Sorry bout that. Last time I had to do that was much earlier this year and I had forgotten their terminology.

I think it’s up to you whether you want to give this buyer a chance. If he has a credit card, all he needs to do to have a “confirmed address” is to add that credit card info to his PayPal account.

If you just want to dismiss the buyer, refund the money through PayPal (just go to transaction details and click on “issue refund”), and file a dispute through eBay. If you relist, I think you do have two charges on your account, but relisting is cheaper than a new listing.

At least that’s my understanding/impression regarding this process, but I may be wrong. The only time I had to file a dispute was an obvious scam, and the fraudulent buyer was kicked off of eBay shortly after “winning” my auction so the dispute was closed and refund issued immediately.

It gets fishier and fishier by the minute. All of the names I’m using are obviously fictitious.

The email address: eHisCommonLastName1@BigCompanyNearShippingAddress.com.
Ship to name: CommonWomansName SomeWhatUncommonLastName

The last names are not the same. I realize that that in itself is not uncommon. There are several CommonWomansName SomeWhatUncommonLastName’s name at 411.com in the shipping zipcode but none at her listed address.

I called BigCompanyNearShippingAddress and asked if “Tom Smith” (the person’s name on the eBay account, not the eBay username) was in. She said “We have an ‘Ed Smith’.” Remembering the ‘e’ that started the email address I have, I said, “That’s it”. She transfers me to his phone and I leave him a message explaining the situation. I asked him to call me back at our 800# or email me.

I have refunded the payment and sent another invoice with instructions to get a confirmed address and pay again. I’m not holding my breath.

ETA: I just hope Wii’s haven’t dropped like a rock by next week.

I’m not an EBay expert, and I’m confused.

As I understand it, Paypal has the auction winner’s money, waiting for the OP to collect it.

How could this be a scam?

If it’s an unconfirmed address, That means the transaction isn’t eligibile for seller protection, and there are ways the buyer can wangle a refund after he has received the item.

It also means the buyer’s PayPal transaction could have been funded by a stolen credit card - in which case, PayPal just reverse the transaction when this comes to light, regardless whether the item has shipped.

Just FYI, you can set PayPal to auto-deny payments that do not use a confirmed address.

In PayPal, it’s under Profile -> Payment Receiving Preferences, and it’s the first option, “Block payments from U.S. users who do not provide a Confirmed Address.”

Good luck with getting this straightened out (or w/ your reposted auction if it comes to that). (Just finish it up before I post mine! :wink: )

I read about that after all of this started of course. :rolleyes: I set mine to ask before accepting payment. If only eBay had an option for blocking bids from unconfirmed addresses.

Surprise update. My buyer sent another payment with a confirmed (different) address. I guess I’ll ship tomorrow making sure that I follow PayPal’s Seller Protection rules to the letter.

In that case, it may just be a clueless guy. A Wii is not an unreasonable purchase for a first time buyer, given lack of supply in many areas, and especially around the Christmas season.

Also, shipping to an unconfirmed address, ie a persons job, is very reasonable, especially if they don’t want a large purchase like that possibly left on their porch when they are at work for someone to steal, or have to arrange to pick it up at the delivery service.

I’m still confused as to how Paypal can just take the money out they’ve already deposited in your account if the card ends up having been stolen. It seems it should be their responsibility to verify, not the sellers?

Or if they want it to be a surprise. :slight_smile:

If the card is only reported/discovered to be stolen after the payment is processed (which is the only way it could happen anyway), there’s nothing they could have done to verify it. The card issuing company will reverse the payment to PayPal, so they’d be left out of pocket if they didn’t follow suit.

Details of a specific case here:

BTW, KRM, make sure you send the item by a method that enables you to verify and track delivery - PayPal will often refund the buyer’s money if he claims non delivery and you can’t prove it got there. I don’t bother doing this for small items, but it’s essential with valuable ones.

I think it was a combination of clueless and wanting a surprise. I got an email from him last night and he explained all the details. He doesn’t go by his first name. He wanted to ship to his sister’s work so that his kids wouldn’t find out. I understand his motivation but giving up the PayPal Seller protection is just too big of a risk for me to ship to an unconfirmed address.

I shipped it this morning FedEx with tracking and a signature required.

Gozu Tashoya,
This auction should make you feel pretty good. I’m at a loss to explain it.