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Author Topic: UK: Company will not refund 2k for failed 5D MkII sale  (Read 3840 times)
feppe
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« on: June 12, 2009, 02:06:15 AM »
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I bought and paid for a 5D MkII in January from ebay.co.uk for a bit over 2000 pounds. While the price was good, it wasn't suspiciously low. The company which sold it had good feedback on recent big-ticket items, has a legit-looking website, and continues to sell cameras. Within a month it was clear that they didn't have the camera in stock although they claimed so in their listing. I requested a refund.

They had delays at their end due to various reasons. They sent me a cheque (haven't seen one in over ten years!), which bounced. They claimed this was due to their bank not being setup for international transfers. Now they have claim to be trying to set international transfers at their bank, but that has been going on for 3+ weeks.

Three months after the sale eBay Resolution Center automatically closes, so eBay refuses to help me. I paid via wire transfer (big mistake!), so I can't dispute a credit card charge or file a case through PayPal. I have extensive email exchange with them on record.

So I'm running out of ideas. They seem to be genuinely trying to help me get the refund, but five months of delays is outrageous. On the other hand, if they were trying to scam me, why would they still be talking to me? This is the first time in over fifteen years of online shopping something like this has happened to me.

Is there anything I can do other than name and shame (which I'd rather not)? A complication is that I live in the Netherlands. I suspect the police won't do anything other than nod with such a small amount of money and cross-border nature of the transaction - which is huge for me. Is there some kind of trade association in the UK I can turn to? Anything else?

The company continues to sell camera equipment, but has the occasional bad feedback. I suspect it's a two-person outfit. I have real names of two persons, a phone number, and two physical addresses attached to it.

Any help greatly appreciated!
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Chairman Bill
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« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2009, 03:41:15 AM »
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I think your first recourse might be to UK Trading Standards - http://www.tradingstandards.gov.uk/
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David Hufford
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« Reply #2 on: June 12, 2009, 03:42:07 AM »
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That sounds bad. I have no additional advice, but it looks like they could refund your money by wire transfer if they were really concerned about getting it back to you. Why would they need to send it by check?
« Last Edit: June 12, 2009, 03:43:47 AM by drichi » Logged

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Andy M
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« Reply #3 on: June 12, 2009, 09:44:55 AM »
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This may help, though I'm not 100% sure if it can be used by non-UK residents: http://www.moneyclaim.gov.uk/
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Slobodan Blagojevic
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« Reply #4 on: June 12, 2009, 11:44:54 AM »
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International transfers? Aren't both countries in the EU? I am sure EU parliament must have come up with some sort of regulation to deal with this type of situation (unless, of course, they were too busy regulating bent cucumbers and straight bananas).
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feppe
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« Reply #5 on: June 12, 2009, 12:35:01 PM »
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Thanks, Andy, that looks promising! At least I might be able to use that for leverage.

Quote from: slobodan56
International transfers? Aren't both countries in the EU? I am sure EU parliament must have come up with some sort of regulation to deal with this type of situation (unless, of course, they were too busy regulating bent cucumbers and straight bananas).

EU is not a country.
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Slobodan Blagojevic
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« Reply #6 on: June 12, 2009, 03:05:35 PM »
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Quote from: feppe
EU is not a country.

No, but it is a union. And as such, it has numerous trade regulations that cover all member countries. One example includes how many millimeters a cucumber could be bent in order to be sold in EU (if you really need to know: not more than 10mm for every 10cm of length). Given that, I only assumed that there should be something regulating cross-border e-commerce. A quick googling discovered EU is at least paying attention to cross-border e-commerce, and produced this 75-page paper:

http://ec.europa.eu/consumers/strategy/doc...f_wp2009_en.pdf

In that paper, they are mentioning something like "... the network of European Consumer Centres (hereafter ECC-Net)...", being in charge of handling cross-border complaints,  so maybe if would help if you would approach the one in your country as well as in the UK.

Do not want to add salt to your wounds, but giving the vendor five months to resolve your situation is awfully generous. In those five months, you could have walked over to them (ok, with a bit of swimming) and get your refund cash in hand.    

Although I am trying to lighten up this debate with a little bit of humor and (light) teasing, I do not mean to be mean, if you know what I mean    ... I do hope that at least some of what I said above might help you find the right direction and get your refund.
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feppe
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« Reply #7 on: June 12, 2009, 04:12:51 PM »
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Quote from: slobodan56
No, but it is a union. And as such, it has numerous trade regulations that cover all member countries. One example includes how many millimeters a cucumber could be bent in order to be sold in EU (if you really need to know: not more than 10mm for every 10cm of length). Given that, I only assumed that there should be something regulating cross-border e-commerce. A quick googling discovered EU is at least paying attention to cross-border e-commerce, and produced this 75-page paper:

http://ec.europa.eu/consumers/strategy/doc...f_wp2009_en.pdf

In that paper, they are mentioning something like "... the network of European Consumer Centres (hereafter ECC-Net)...", being in charge of handling cross-border complaints,  so maybe if would help if you would approach the one in your country as well as in the UK.

There are a lot of EU rules and regulations, but implementation, adherence and enforcement of such is spotty, at best.

Quote from: slobodan56
Do not want to add salt to your wounds, but giving the vendor five months to resolve your situation is awfully generous. In those five months, you could have walked over to them (ok, with a bit of swimming) and get your refund cash in hand.  

Not helpful. Getting scammed out of 2,000 pounds is not exactly a laughing matter for me.
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edwinb
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« Reply #8 on: June 13, 2009, 07:09:29 AM »
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can you represent the cheque for payment? or put it in the hands of a uk dept collection agency?
edwin
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Andy M
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« Reply #9 on: June 13, 2009, 03:57:21 PM »
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Quote from: feppe
Thanks, Andy, that looks promising! At least I might be able to use that for leverage.



EU is not a country.

Harri,

If you do go this route and you have the case awarded in your favour, whatever you do DON'T instruct a UK court bailiff to execute the warrant - they're beyond useless! (I speak from experience   )

Give me a shout if you need any advice. One more thing, and this is hugely important, if you use Money Claim Online make 110% sure that you provide the correct address for the person/company you intend to sue. If the paperwork goes to the wrong address the case can be struck out and you lose your .
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feppe
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« Reply #10 on: June 13, 2009, 06:49:44 PM »
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Quote from: edwinb
can you represent the cheque for payment? or put it in the hands of a uk dept collection agency?
edwin

How does that work? As implied before, we don't use cheques in Netherlands or Finland, so I'm not familiar with the specifics.

I'd imagine 2k is not enough for a collection agency to raise an eyebrow, though.
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Chris Pollock
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« Reply #11 on: July 03, 2009, 07:04:50 PM »
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Quote from: feppe
They seem to be genuinely trying to help me get the refund, but five months of delays is outrageous. On the other hand, if they were trying to scam me, why would they still be talking to me?
I'm no expert, but I'm sure they could have figured out a way to give you back your money if they really wanted to. I suspect that they wanted to give you the impression that they were trying to help, to prevent, or at least delay, your taking action against them. If they just stopped responding to your emails, I imagine that you'd assume you'd been scammed, and contact eBay and the authorities as soon as possible. The five month delay will make it harder for you to get your money back, and possibly give them more time to scam other people in the meantime.
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