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My Blood Pressure Soars

By Marti Thompson

Like Turning Off The Lights Before The Bill Is Mailed

I have been selling vintage clothing on eBay for the past few months. A package was lost in the mail, and I believe the buyer is being honest about it. I offered her a refund, but she said, no, she could get a refund through PayPal. Apparently she thought the buyer protection plan was some sort of insurance policy, and that it wouldn’t cost me anything. I was new at the game, and thought maybe I misunderstood, and provided what information I had to PayPal’s dispute resolution department. I had not purchased delivery confirmation, but sent them the numbers of the customs documents, and told them what I was providing. I received information by email stating that the matter was under investigation. This was the status of things for several weeks. Then on March 9 at 5:49 a.m., I received an email from PayPal saying the dispute had been decided in the buyer’s favor, and because there were not sufficient funds in my PayPal account, my account was now limited. I do not object to giving this customer a refund, but I am outraged at PayPal’s methods. I was not given an opportunity to make a refund once the decision was made; I was given no notice whatsoever.

I’ve spent the past week on perpetual hold, talked to numerous customer service representatives and supervisors, and my account still remains limited. I sent the funds the day this happened; I spent three hours on the phone that day, and sent authorization for PayPal to make this refund (although why they need an authorization when they just seize funds with impunity I’ll never know). At the time I had a considerable amount of business pending on eBay, and cannot access these funds to cover postage to mail items to my buyers. I was told a week ago that my account was going to be restored, but hasn’t happened. At this point, automatic payments are starting to hit my business bank account, most urgently my eBay fees, and pretty soon there will be overdrafts. When I asked the PayPal supervisor what about overdrafts caused by their incompetence, she told me that their policy is they don’t cover overdrafts. I mentioned that I was aware that there had been a successful class action suit for just such practices, and she said, “Only one.” PayPal’s arogance takes my breath away.

I run a small local vintage store, and I plan to begin accepting credit card payments directly, or money orders. It may cost me some business, but I can feel my blood pressure soar everytime I have to deal with PayPal. I’ll live longer if I don’t have to deal with them.

Posted: May 8, 2012 at 11:30 am


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