My posts are always long.
2: We have had trouble in the past collecting from Paypal, and many of the things written were also experienced directly by myself or by my company. Non-existent employees, voice mailboxes that went nowhere, and incorrect ballances were common.
When this was brought to the attention of the Minnesota attorney general, I was told by the attorney general's office that they were not licensed to do business in this state and have never been, however the state was in the process of suing Paypal again after doing the same for a number of undetermined times. I was given a URL that detailed the suits in progress and also the resoved suits This did not include any private suits that may or may not be in progress.
They do get a judgement against them here a couple times a year and don't seem to mind. They were fined a total of nearly $50,000 dollars alone by two separate civil actions by the state that I am aware of. Yet I suppose they consider these fines and 'minor legal issues' a cost of doing business. I would avoid using paypal if at all possible. If things go right, (and from the looks of it they usually do) then it's great, but when a problem arrises, they have one concern only, and that concern is their ass, not yours, mine, or anybody elses. Look up paypal on the internet and see just how many people are upset with them all over the country, there are web sites devoted to collecting paypal 'war stories'
Most banks and credit companies are accredited and recognized financial institutions, and are regulated like banks and credit unions. Paypal is not. In my opinion you'd be better off dealing with the mob. If an accredited banking institution defrauds a customer, then you can take them to court with assistance from your state's attorney generals office.
Since Paypal isn't a legal entity, (at least here in Minnesota) all you have is a civil tort at best, and a "he said she said" controversy against a bunch of voice mails, and try to take a voicemail to court. THey won't even both to listen to your case and dismiss it on the grounds that you should have known not to do business with someone you don't trust in the first place.
Personally, I'd leave another voice mail saying that if their computer doesn't pay up in a week, you'll cut the head off the next parking meter to show that your serious. (ok, that's probably a bit extreme and I don't actually recommend that).
but what I am serious about is you should deal based on the following principles:
1: Dont buy unless it's either not an expensive item or unless you personally know the seller, or at least know someone that can vouch for him.
2. Deal by credit card. Credit card protects the buyer, but not the seller.
3 Deal by cash or money order assuming you are also following rule #1.
4 If at all possible, inspect the merchandise carefully before you buy it. Just like you would before you buy a used car or a house. If you can't do that, consider using a local hobby store that both seller and buyer trusts as an escrow. Never use just any old internet escrow service. Half of them are frauds. There are a few that are legit and reliable that I've used, and felt that the extra 1.5 percent or so was worth the peace of mind. THere are a few people who have used an escrow service to attempt to exchange a damaged gyro for a known good one, saying that what I sent was junk. I ended up with a smashed something and they ended up with a new 401. Luckily I also had a video tape of the packaging through to the UPS pickup to prove that I sent was I was supposed to send. If there is an opportunity to con sombody, believe me, it's been done, and you've got to get rid of that 'trusting feeling' and protect yourself if you sell or buy long distance. THere are millions of people who have no concience at all when it comes to stuff of this type. I like to think that RR patrons are trustworthy, but if an item is more than a couple hundred, I'll cover all my bases.
As an example, a few years ago an individual from northern alabama was selliing a gas xcell. I had never heard of him, but the photos looked good. At the time I had competed against Dave Harkey one or twice, and been to at least one of his fun flies so I decided to call him. to see if he knew anything about it, and he said "Oh that one... I built it." I'ts as near perfect as you'll find and I just saw it a few days ago Looks great and flies great. Buy it"). Needless to say the transaction went very smoothly by money order. and I couldn't have been more satisfied. I think dave might rhave eminded me to get a life when I re-informed him that a trophy he won once in phoenix really should have gone to me, but that's another story that we'll jokingly take up at his fun fly next weekend. (I'm just kidding dave, the best man won that weekend) . I'll just admire my crappy little 2nd place plaque which by the way was MUCH easier to pack than a stupid trophy)