Escalating and Resolving a Case

Important! The Post-Order API contains both seller- and buyer-facing interfaces. Normally, you will implement only the seller-facing interfaces in your applications; the buyer-facing calls are included to facilitate application testing (buyers generally use eBay Web flows to initiate cancellations, returns, inquiries, and escalations).

This section covers the following topics:

Topics:

Escalating an Item Not Received inquiry

Escalating a return request

Resolving a case

When an item doesn't arrive within the estimated delivery date, the buyer can create an Item Not Received (INR) inquiry. At that point, the buyer has the option of still requesting to receive the item, or they can seek a refund. If the seller does not properly address the INR inquiry, or is not willing to issue a refund if sought by the buyer, the buyer has the option of escalating the INR inquiry into an INR case.

Similarly, if a buyer creates a Return request that the seller does not adequately address, the buyer has the option of escalating that Return request into a Return case. It could be that the buyer is claiming that the received item is not as described, or it arrived damaged or with missing parts, but the seller does not believe that to be true and is unwilling to offer a refund or a replacement item. Whatever the case may be, if the buyer and seller are unable to resolve the issue, the buyer or seller can esclate the Return request into a Return case.

The eBay customer support team will review all INR and Return cases. However, even after an INR or Return case is created, it is still possible for the buyer and seller to work it out without eBay customer support making a final decision on the case, either in favor of the buyer or the seller. The Post-Order API Case Management interfaces can be used to programmatically manage, and possibly resolve, a case without a final decision being made by eBay customer support. Here, a seller will receive a defect only if eBay has to ultimately make a decision on that case, and eBay rules in favor of the buyer.

The eBay Money Back Guarantee program protects a buyer when a seller does not send an item on time and is not willing to issue a refund after the estimated delivery date has passed, or when the buyer receives an item that doesn't match the listing description and the seller is not willing to work with them by sending them a replacment item or issuing a refund. The latter issue is known as a significantly not as described eBay Money Back Guarantee help page. Buyers can open an Item Not Received (INR) or Return (SNAD reason) case through the Resolution Center.

Escalating an Item Not Received inquiry

After an INR inquiry is created, the buyer and seller can hopefully still resolve the issue so an escalation is not necessary. However, If the seller doesn't come to terms with the buyer (for example, if the seller refuses to refund the order), the buyer can escalate the INR inquiry into an INR case.

Normally, the buyer is going to escalate an INR inquiry through the eBay Web flow, but if the buyer was going to do it programmatically, the POST /inquiry/{inquiryId}/escalate call would be used. If the call is successful at escalating the INR inquiry, a case ID is returned in the HTTP Status page.

Note: Currently, there is not a programmatic way for a seller to retrieve case IDs. Future releases of the Post-Order API will provide the means to retrieve the caseId value, which will allow sellers to manage the cases programmatically.

Escalating a return request

A Return request can be escalated by the buyer or seller using the POST /post-order/v2/return/{returnId}/escalate call. You must provide a return reason in the call. If the call is successful at escalating the Return request, a case ID is returned in the HTTP Status page.

The following are several reasons why the buyer might want to escalate a Return request:

The following are several reasons why the seller might want to escalate a Return request:

Note: Currently, there is not a programmatic way for a seller to retrieve case IDs. Future releases of the Post-Order API will provide the means to retrieve the caseId value, which will allow sellers to manage the cases programmatically.

Resolving a case

Once a seller has a case ID value, that seller can take steps to handle the case. It is in the seller's best interest to resolve the case before eBay customer support steps in and makes a decision. This flow is described below in Negotiating a resolution to a case. For cases that do not get negotiated, and go to eBay customer support, see Handling an escalated case. Finally, if either the buyer or the seller is not satisfied with the customer support ruling, they can appeal the decision, as described in Appealing a case.

Negotiating a resolution to a case

Even if a buyer escalates a Return request or an INR inquiry, sellers still have a short time to negotiate a successful resolution to the case before eBay customer support takes over the case.

To begin, the seller makes a GET /post-order/v2/casemanagement/{caseId} call to get the full details of the case. The following three points of data in the call response will dictate the seller's next action:

Once the details are known, the seller can determine their approach to settling the case with the buyer. Below are examples of four different cases a seller might be facing, and the possible solution path to each one:

Case details: A Return case where the buyer wants to return an item for a full refund.
Possible strategy for seller to resolve the case without an eBay customer support decision:

  1. Call POST /post-order/v2/casemanagement/{caseId}/provide_return_address to provide the proper return address to the buyer.
  2. Ask the buyer to return the item to the address that was provided and to provide shipment tracking information. The buyer can upload shipment tracking information through the Web flow, or they can optionally use the POST /post-order/v2/casemanagement/{caseId}/provide_shipment_info call. Inform the buyer that you will issue a refund once the return item is received.
  3. Upon receiving the returned item, the seller should inspect to see if the item is in the expected condition.
  4. Call POST /post-order/v2/casemanagement/{caseId}/issue_refund to issue a full refund.
  5. Buyer closes the case through the Web flow or by using the POST /post-order/v2/casemanagement/{caseId}/close call.

Case details: A Return case where the buyer returned the original item because it was not as described in the listing, and requested a replacement ite that was never received.
Possible strategy for seller to resolve the case without an eBay customer support decision:

  1. Ship the replacement item.
  2. Use the POST /post-order/v2/casemanagement/{caseId}/provide_shipment_info call to provide shipment tracking information for the replacement item.
  3. Upon receiving the replacement item, the buyer should inspect to see if the item is in the expected condition.
  4. Buyer closes the case through the Web flow or by using the POST /post-order/v2/casemanagement/{caseId}/close call.

Case details: An INR case where the buyer requested a full refund (instead of receiving the item), but the seller did not issue the refund.
Possible strategy for seller to resolve the case without an eBay customer support decision:

  1. Call POST /post-order/v2/casemanagement/{caseId}/issue_refund to issue a full refund.
  2. Buyer closes the case through the Web flow or by using the POST /post-order/v2/casemanagement/{caseId}/close call.

Case details: An INR case where the buyer still wants the item, but the seller never shipped the item.
Possible strategy for seller to resolve the case without an eBay customer support decision:

  1. Ship the item.
  2. Use the POST /post-order/v2/casemanagement/{caseId}/provide_shipment_info call to provide shipment tracking information for the item.
  3. Buyer closes the case through the Web flow or by using the POST /post-order/v2/casemanagement/{caseId}/close call.

Handling a closed case

Sometimes, the seller might be unable to negotiate with the buyer to close a case before eBay customer support steps in. If eBay customer support rules in favor of the seller on the case, the seller will not have to perform any further action. The case will be closed, and the buyer will have to appeal the case to have any hopes of the decision getting reversed. If eBay customer support rules in favor of the buyer on the case, the seller will either have to issue a full refund, or ship the original or replacement item if the buyer still wants the item. Any case that is ruled in favor of the buyer will count as a defect on the seller's account.

Appealing a case

Once eBay customer support makes a ruling on a case, the case is automatically closed. However, if either the buyer or the seller disagree with the ruling, they can appeal the case in an attempt to reverse the decision. An appeal is created programmatically by calling POST /post-order/v2/casemanagement/{caseId}/appeal. The only element in the request container is a comments container. The buyer or seller should thoroughly state their case (through this container) about why an appeal is being made, and provide any additional details that may assist eBay customer support on making their decision on the appeal. Cases can be appealed only once—the ruling on an appeal is final.

 

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