10 min article

Abusive buyer policy

Our abusive buyer policy lays out unacceptable buying behavior.

Buyers may not misuse our feedback, returns, or buyer protection programs. Our full policy below outlines eBay's expectations for buyer behavior.

Frequently Asked Questions

 

How do I report abusive behavior?

You can report a buyer to us by selecting the button below:

Report a buyer - opens in new window or tab

What should I do if I think a buyer is making an unreasonable demand?

You're not required to agree to any extras or changes from the terms of your listing. If a buyer is making demands that are not a part of your original listing, you will be protected from negative feedback and defects when you either deliver the item purchased by the buyer according to the original terms of your listing, or cancel the transaction.

To help us identify buyers who are engaging in unacceptable buying behaviors, please report the abusive behavior - opens in new window or tab.

We encourage you to communicate politely and professionally with the buyer.

Read our full policy

Abusive buyer policy overview

This policy outlines our expectations for buyer behavior. When buyers don't meet these standards, sellers can report abusive behavior - opens in new window or tab.

Engaging in the unacceptable behavior outlined in this policy may result in a range of actions, including issuing warnings to buyers, blocking buyers from requesting returns or refunds, blocking buyers from opening claims, and account suspension.

When we review a report of a member violating our policies, we look at the circumstances, including the members' history. We make decisions based on the evidence in the individual situation, as well as by evaluating patterns of behavior that create a negative value in the marketplace. If we aren't sure about something, we may not take any action. Also, because we respect our members' privacy, we can't discuss the results of any investigations.

Behaviors we don't allow

Don't demand something not offered in the original listing

Not allowed Not allowed
  • Requesting a shipping service not offered by the seller
  • Requesting the seller ship to an address other than what you included in checkout
  • Requesting to use a payment method not offered during checkout
  • Requesting the seller hold your item so you can pay later
  • Requesting a partial refund without returning the item
  • Request additional items or services not included in the original listing or asking for a discount
  • Finding an item on eBay and taking the sale off eBay
 
Allowed Allowed
  • Select one of the shipping services offered by the seller when you checkout
  • Updating your address in your eBay account before you checkout
  • Pay for your item through a payment option offered at checkout
  • Pay for your item within two days
  • Returning an item in accordance with the seller's returns policy
  • Purchase items according to the terms included in the original listing
  • Finding an item on eBay and completing the sale on eBay
 

Don't make false claims

Not allowed Not allowed
  • Claiming an item was not received when it was delivered
  • Claiming an item was not as described in order to return the item when the seller did not offer free returns
 
Allowed Allowed
  • Claiming an item was not received when it has not been delivered by the latest estimated delivery date
  • Claiming an item was not as described when the item you received did not match the description in the original listing
 

Don't misuse returns

Not allowed Not allowed
  • Returning an item other than the original item received
  • Using or damaging an item and then returning it
  • Returning an item with the reason that it was not as described when it was described accurately
 
Allowed Allowed
  • Returning the original item that was received in its original condition
  • Returning an item with the reason that it was not as described when it was described inaccurately
 

Don't misuse eBay messaging or bidding

Not allowed Not allowed
  • Bidding for any purpose other than to purchase the item
  • Sending messages to force or intimidate the other member into something outside of the original agreement
 
Allowed Allowed
  • You can only retract a bid under exceptional circumstances
  • Using messages to ask questions to clarify listing descriptions or terms
 

Don't abuse the buyer protection programs

Not allowed Not allowed
  • A pattern of excessively opening eBay Money Back Guarantee requests or PayPal Purchase Protection cases or external payment disputes or chargebacks
  • Opening claims or harassing sellers about an item not received before the latest estimated delivery date has passed
  • Opening an eBay Money Back Guarantee request or PayPal Purchase Protection case or external payment disputes or chargebacks:
    • When you have already received a refund from the seller or reimbursement from your payment provider
    • When you haven't paid for an item
    • As retaliation against a seller following a previous dispute
 
Allowed Allowed
  • Opening either an eBay Money Back Guarantee case or PayPal Purchase Protection case or external payment dispute or chargeback, if you have not received the item or after the item you received didn't match the description in the listing
  • Opening an eBay Money Back Guarantee refund request or opening a PayPal Purchase Protection case when you didn't receive the item and you haven't been able to resolve the issue with the seller
 

Additional information

Acceptable buying practices include adherence to the following policies.

  • Communications: Your communications with sellers via email, My eBay Messages or Community discussion boards should comply with our member-to-member contact policy.
  • Customs declarations: Asking a seller to falsely declare an item as a gift on a customs form is considered to be encouraging illegal activity.
  • Unwelcome and malicious buying: We consider bidding on or buying an item when you have no intention of completing the transaction, or circumventing a seller's buyer requirements, to be unwelcome and malicious buying.
  • Contact information: All eBay members must keep their account details up to date. We take action when we know that a member has false or missing contact information.

Why does eBay have this policy?

We want to make sure eBay is a safe place to sell. In order to make eBay a safe place to sell, we hold our buyers to certain standards. When buyers do not follow these standards we take action on our buyers and we protect our sellers.

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