Screwed by PayPal in small claims court

This post was written by marc on September 5, 2004
Posted Under: Consumer Complaints,PayPal

I got the decision in small claims court in the mail and I got screwed. The judge – who really wasn’t a judge but a fill in lawyer – complained that the case was too complex for small claims court and recommended I hire a lawyer.

The decision: Defendant (PayPal) acted within the scope of contrace and no legislation was presented to override.

This was a dispute arising from PayPal not liking what I posted on my web site and deciding to cut me off and seize my money for 180 days. I did get my money back after recording a conversation I had with them and posting it on the internet.

Details are at this link.

The battle isn’t over yet however. The problem is that PayPal is acting like a financial institution without the responsibilities of a bank. They are playing a game of legal fiction playinf fast and loose with people’s money. I want to see what I can do to bring PayPal under the same rules as other financial institutions so they can’t just decide to arbetrarilly decide to grab someon’e money just for any reason they want.

Reader Comments

just wanted to say… the “this call may be recorded” thing was awesome. well done. =)


Written By -special- on September 5th, 2004 @ 4:42 pm

Now, be fair. PayPal “cut you off” because you violated the End User Agreement by posting links to sexually explicit material and escort services and hosting such materials on your site.

Can you really not see how giving advice to women about how to become a prostitute and including a link saying “If you find this information useful, please tip the author with PayPal” on the page violates PayPal’s Acceptable Use Policy? How about links to sites like “Pussy Quota”, “Hardcore Amateur Movies”, “Insane Orgy” and “Truly 18”? Do you really not get it?

PayPal doesn’t even allow its services to be used for items in eBay’s Mature Category – and they’re owned by the same company. Do you think they’d make an exception for you? Not every restriction is a case of trying to curb free speech. This isn’t about your “Rantz”, after all.

If you want to argue the legality of seizing and holding money for 180 days, I’m 100% behind you, but don’t expect any court of law in the land to believe that PayPal cut you off “arbitrarily”.

Written By MadBlue on September 5th, 2004 @ 4:59 pm

As a curious occasional reader I have a question… I noticed there were three posts here and now there are only two?

Do you normally remove posts just because you don’t like the poster’s message??

Interesting thing to do for someone who is so ferociously crying to the world about his online free speech rights being limited…

Written By Fudge3 on September 6th, 2004 @ 2:58 pm

Ah, you’ve turned into one of Mark’s little secrets. Yes he regularly deletes posts that he does not like. (I assume it’s just an ego thing.)

It’s very common to see posts survive here for just a short period of time before it get’s censored by perkels *freedom of speech* paradox.

I assume you were referring to the post from the laywer that was indicating why perkel wasn’t successful?

Written By YesHeDoes on September 6th, 2004 @ 6:29 pm

I noticed that post was missing too, YesHeDoes. It was there before I posted mine. I didn’t think it was that inflammatory or anything, especially compared to other posts that have appeared on this site.

Written By MadBlue on September 7th, 2004 @ 8:33 am

The 8 September it’s Now Officialy 180 DAY’S. That’s they hold 3369 US DOLLARS. My turn to trought up my lyrics. Going to call and record it.
Gonna come with more info.

Written By Algouni2k on September 7th, 2004 @ 9:04 pm

Look. PayPal is a monopoly. Yes, Small Claims wasn’t the proper arena and I understand why because of its complexity. I signed up with PayPal before eBay bought it out. So Mr. Perkel’s site has adult information in it. He was not violating any laws and it’s scary to think that PayProwl can simply change their user agreement whenever they want. It’s not a matter of content on websites. It is not up to PayPal to judge what it thinks is unsuitable, offer no appeal, and keep the money. As for fining people, I wanted to have a donation fund to raise money by other furs to get art commissioned for my site. Luckily for me, that was 9 days ago and that plan sure as hell changed. PayPal needs to be regulated, investigated, and exposed. This has all opened a door to me that I faded from 3 years ago. What the hell is wrong with money orders and cheques? A hell of a lot better than accepting PayPal’s holier than thou logic. While PayPal was convenient, they’re crooked and unethical. They have no right to fine its customers either. If I want to pay a furry artist friend of mine to draw an erotic illustration (we’re both legal adults), then I should be able to do that with my money.

As for not closing the account, I downloaded all three phone calls and was thoroughly amused. Mr. Perkel, I suggest you logon to congress’s website and mass mail each of the congresspeople/senators this information. <=== they were blacklisted by paypal, yet they continue to use eBay at their own risk.

Written By Cyberwuffy Ala Wolfe on September 22nd, 2004 @ 3:11 pm

We were just screwed HARD by PayPal

We sold a $850 Taylor guitar on ebay, buyer received guitar and left feedback stating guitar received in perfect condition. A week later files a buyer protection claim say guitar was broken in half when received.
(How could anyone not know his guitar was broken in half when he picked it up to play?)
Without getting any info from us what so ever, PayPal’s so called “Investigator” grants buyer a full refund from our acc.
So we are out the $850 plus all shipping charges and had our once mint Taylor guitar delivered back to us in two peaces.
Aside from the buyers own written statment, we had other proof, but was never given the chance to say anything in the matter.
Beware! PayPal could do this to you!

Written By GotGreased on August 2nd, 2005 @ 10:11 pm

Keep swinging!

Written By Rick Williams on August 13th, 2006 @ 4:00 pm

Would you buy stock in a company whose ex-customers actively and aggressively speak out against it? Would you hold shares of a company after 20,000 of its potential clients (recently) spent 5 minutes reading about its customer complaints? Would you buy the stock, if the list of customer complaints exceeded one million? Would you hold the stock if analyst who consistently misjudged its value recommended it and its year to date performance was 40% below the S&P 500? If an active “negative ad campaign” (exceeding 6 million impressions) came to your attention, prior to your investment, would you still buy? If you answer yes to any or all of the above you should buy shares of EBAY or shares in any mutual fund holding positions in this company.

Written By Rick Williams on August 14th, 2006 @ 7:54 am

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