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I'm not disclosing the artist's name yet until I have a clearer idea of what to expect from the situation's resolution.
I will update and/or post the artist's handle if necessary as the situation progresses. For now this is just for advice.

In April, I ordered a product from [an artist who makes high quality handmade things marketed to furries.] This product was not handmade and part of a batch. They have a very good reputation. In their disclaimers they note that they are a 1 person army, so to be patient as packing can even take a few weeks. I was fine with this -- It was a stuffed animal, I could wait.

I received a shipping e-mail on the 25th of May with a tracking number, which I did not see until sometime early June. It stated that the item had been collected to ship out to me on the 8th of May. Why it took until the 25th for this information to get to me was anyone's guess. I checked the number in the tracker and it confirmed the item had been received for shipping on the 8th, but nothing further.

Weird, I thought. But, packages from the US to the UK can take a long time. So I waited another week. Nothing.
I tried the number in the tracker again. No further information.

I called the Royal Mail and Parcelforce to be absolutely sure if this parcel had crossed the border. No one had any records of it so I turned my attentions to the USPS, who told me they had no further information on the parcel.

So I send an e-mail stating all of this, requesting they chase it up from their end. I say that if the parcel fails to be found, I will have to ask for a refund or replacement, replacement preferred.

A few days ago I got an e-mail saying they'll try chasing it up, but they won't replace or refund me.
I'm livid.

I feel like I have waited over a month, been very patient, liased with a bunch of people and am now being told that I have paid the better part of a hundred dollars for the privilege.

I feel like they owe me either what I paid, or what I paid for. Nothing more, but certainly nothing less. I understand that this situation is nobody's fault but outright telling me they won't replace or refund me has got my back up like nobody's business.

I haven't gone totally public with this yet as I am giving them a few more days to respond, but after that I'm going to have to blow up, and I don't want to. I'm an artist too. I work freelance too. I know what it's like, but I also don't want to have shelled out for jack.

What should I do? If I don't hear back from them, what do I say?

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( 36 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 20th, 2014 07:08 pm (UTC)
If you paid via Paypal, I'd contact them as soon as possible, with the evidence that the package was lost via transit (or just never existed somehow) and that the seller is not working with you for resolution.
(Deleted comment)
Jun. 20th, 2014 08:40 pm (UTC)
I was never asked about that. I would not have declined to pay for it if it were offered to me.
I also thought that Priority Special Deliveries have an 'in-built' $50 insurance?
(Deleted comment)
(no subject) - nambroth - Jun. 21st, 2014 04:16 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - jakejynx - Jun. 20th, 2014 11:20 pm (UTC) - Expand
Jun. 20th, 2014 07:18 pm (UTC)
I agree with the above. Not offering refund or replacement is really bad especially since it seems like a shipping issue. Wouldn't the item be insured so the seller isnt completely out?
Jun. 20th, 2014 07:34 pm (UTC)
It's the seller's responsibility to either offer insurance on their packages or prepare to pay out of pocket to resend another item or refund. I personally dont insure packages because filing a claim is like throwing the claim into a black hole, so I refund/resend.

The only way it would be okay for them not to compensate you is if they asked if you'd like insurance and you declined, then the risk would be on you.
Jun. 20th, 2014 08:40 pm (UTC)
I was definitely not asked if I wanted insurance. I'd have paid the extra few dollars for it.
(no subject) - jakejynx - Jun. 20th, 2014 11:23 pm (UTC) - Expand
Jun. 20th, 2014 08:07 pm (UTC)
It sounds like the buyer printed up a shipping receipt that registered with the parcel but never dropped the parcel off.
I've noticed this at least with usps when ordering things that I'll get an e-mail notification with my tracking number the day they print out my shipping label. But then notice that the next day it'll show the actual confirmation of the postal office receiving and logging in the package to their system to ship.

I'd contact paypal like Ocean said and let them know you're package never arrived and the seller is unwilling to compensate the loss.
Jun. 20th, 2014 08:41 pm (UTC)
Even if it's been over 35 days?
(no subject) - cyiakanami - Jun. 20th, 2014 08:43 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - celestinaketzia - Jun. 20th, 2014 09:19 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - germanchoclates - Jun. 20th, 2014 09:28 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - rahnt - Jun. 24th, 2014 01:25 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - nambroth - Jun. 21st, 2014 04:18 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - vagabond - Jun. 20th, 2014 09:40 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - jakejynx - Jun. 20th, 2014 11:34 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - breakspire - Jun. 20th, 2014 11:32 pm (UTC) - Expand
Jun. 20th, 2014 08:49 pm (UTC)
This is going to sound harsh, but if the seller doesn't pony up an actual replacement or refund, not only should you out them here, but also file Mail Fraud, both in the US (which the link is for), and with the Royal Mail. And report them to PayPal, as well, because, hey. Fraud is Bad, mmmkay?

Good luck to you.

Jun. 20th, 2014 11:48 pm (UTC)
I don't know that I would recommend going as far as reporting mail fraud. Chances are good this is not a fraud situation, and is more the seller just not wanting to take responsibility for a lost item.
Jun. 20th, 2014 11:31 pm (UTC)
If I were in this situation I would send another email, bluntly informing them that due to the fact that they (apparently) did not insure the item, they are culpable for the loss of it. Paypal will come down in your favor on this, bottom line. So I would give them the opportunity to refund or resend within X amount of time without having to go through paypal. I would likely also inform them that if they used priority insurance, they had automatic indemnity, so they can get part of the money back after the fact, at least.

If they didn't use priority (which would have been dangerous in itself--you should never use anything other than priority or express when shipping international), then well... they're pretty much out of luck, and it's not your problem.

Don't worry too much though. You'll get your money back if you used paypal, if nothing else.
Jun. 20th, 2014 11:35 pm (UTC)
I ship USPS First Class International on a regular basis, it's not so bad... usually when I spring for Priority for the faster time it takes just as long as First Class anyways :/
(no subject) - jakejynx - Jun. 20th, 2014 11:43 pm (UTC) - Expand
Jun. 21st, 2014 02:09 am (UTC)
Just a heads-up for future orders - first class international mail no longer offers any tracking (unless you send it Registered). The barcode on the customs forms used to technically have a little bit of tracking in case it got lost (which the post office could use), but they discontinued that as of April or May because it was getting too expensive and complicated for the USPS and foreign post offices to keep track of (source: the post office worker I see multiple times a week). Priority International still includes tracking, I believe.

If you didn't get any sort of information until May 25th and the parcel was scheduled to ship May 8th, that very likely means the seller printed the electronic shipping info on the 8th, and didn't actually mail it until the 25th. In my experience, first-class packages from the U.S. can take up to 4 weeks (sometimes 5) to arrive in the U.K. I once had U.K. customs hold a Priority Express parcel for three weeks and it ended up being delivered to the customer too late for their event :(

From the shipping info, it sounds like the seller did ship the item, but if they originally offered a refund/replacement and now have rescinded that offer, that's pretty crappy. You could use that as proof if you wanted to file a Paypal dispute that the seller did offer a refund/replacement if it got lost. However, keep in mind that if they shipped it on the 25th, it's still not really 'late' due to the weird timeframes international shipments can take.

Since your package was Priority International, it has at least $50 insurance, unless you paid for more. If it really does end up lost, the seller is the one who needs to file the refund request, and then since it's international, they will need to refund you the money directly. If it's lost, they really have no excuse to at least refund you the automatic $50, since it's included. I hope this gets resolved :(

Edited at 2014-06-21 02:10 am (UTC)
Jun. 21st, 2014 03:58 am (UTC)

actually, they added tracking to first class international to many countries in january of last year when they just about doubled prices, then added more countries this year. it doesn't always work when it reaches the other country, but it's been successful lately.


hmm actually it looks like it's only if you purchase postage online
(no subject) - kazeno_taka - Jun. 21st, 2014 04:28 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - nambroth - Jun. 21st, 2014 04:21 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - vagabond - Jun. 21st, 2014 12:14 pm (UTC) - Expand
(Deleted comment)
(no subject) - chronidu - Jun. 21st, 2014 05:42 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - breakspire - Jun. 21st, 2014 10:19 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - chronidu - Jun. 22nd, 2014 05:15 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - nambroth - Jun. 21st, 2014 04:25 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - vagabond - Jun. 22nd, 2014 01:19 pm (UTC) - Expand
Jun. 22nd, 2014 05:08 pm (UTC)
Paypal Time Limit for International Orders
Actually because this transaction is a International one you have 60 days instead of the normal 45 days to file a dispute with PayPal. So if you ordered at the end of April then you can still dispute. Otherwise if it's past that point and used a Credit Card then you can probably dispute it with your Crdeit Card company claiming you didn't receive the package, a credit card chargeback will force PayPal into notifying the seller that there's a dispute with the transaction and hold or charge them the amount of that transaction until evidence is provided that the seller has did their part in what looks like in this case so far they have not.
Jun. 28th, 2014 06:38 pm (UTC)
I'm assuming the artist you ordered from has outlined policies about shipping procedures and what they will and will not do for lost packages, since most of us do.

I'm also assuming you read them before putting down so much money on one of this artist's items. Could you tell us what the artists policies are regarding international orders and missing packages so we can get a better idea of what's going on?
Jul. 6th, 2014 01:27 am (UTC)
What country are you in? I know packages I send to Italy for example, get delayed nine times out of ten by the Italian post. Sometimes they 'disappear' there. :/
( 36 comments — Leave a comment )


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