Manage unpaid items on eBay

If there's a problem with a transaction and the buyer doesn't pay, Unpaid Item Assistant can save you time and effort.

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Resolve an Unpaid Item

Resolve an Unpaid Item

When a buyer wins an auction or purchases an item, they are obligated to complete the transaction by sending full payment to the seller. However, lack of buyer experience and difficulties with electronic payment can sometimes result in unpaid items. In the event that you have a buyer who doesn't pay, you should try contacting the buyer directly to resolve the problem. If you're unable to contact your buyer and resolve the issue, you should open an unpaid item case. Once an unpaid item case is opened, the buyer has 4 days to make payment.

How you're protected

When an unpaid item case closes without payment from the buyer, the seller automatically receives a final value fee credit and the buyer is blocked from leaving Feedback for that transaction. We'll also record the unpaid item on the buyer's account. If a buyer has a history of unpaid items, it can lead to limits on - or loss of - buying privileges.

Here's how it works

Sellers can open an unpaid item case manually through the Resolution Center or sign up for Unpaid Item Assistant– a feature that allows eBay to automatically open and close cases on the seller’s behalf.

To open an unpaid item case in the Resolution Center

  • Go to the Resolution Center
  • Select I haven’t received my payment yet, and then click the Continue button

You can open an unpaid item case in the Resolution Center from 2 days to 32 days after the listing has ended (or immediately, if the buyer is no longer registered on eBay). The buyer will have up to 4 days to send a payment after the case is opened. If the buyer doesn’t pay within 4 days, manually close the case in the Resolution Center to receive a final value fee credit.

You’ll need to manually close the case in the Resolution Center within 36 days after the listing ended. If you haven’t closed the case on the 37th day after the listing has ended, eBay will automatically close it and you will not receive a final value fee credit. Also, the unpaid item won’t be recorded on the buyer’s account.

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To automatically open unpaid item cases with Unpaid Item Assistant

  1. Sign in to My eBay and go to the Account tab.
  2. Click on site preferences and opt in for Unpaid Item Assistant.
  3. You can set up Unpaid Item Assistant to automatically open a case after a specified time—2, 4, 8, 16, 24 or 32 days—after the listing is sold.
  4. If you don’t see the lower settings (for example, 2 days), you need to update your combined payments preference.
  5. If the buyer doesn’t pay within the specified time frame, the case closes automatically and the seller receives his or her final value fee credit. An unpaid item is recorded on the buyer’s account.

Additional features:

  1. You can set preferences to relist items

    Learn more

  2. Exclude buyers or transactions

    Learn more

More about seller protection

eBay seller protection policy

Find out how you’re protected.

Frequently Asked Questions

Have a question about how to deal with feedback or a low DSR? See the FAQ for answers.

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