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Buyer Case Resolution

If you're looking to return an item or get a refund from an order on Etsy, the first thing to do is contact the seller directly. Each seller has their own shop policies that should address issues like these.

If you've reached out to the seller and haven't heard back, or if you're unable to resolve your issue together, you can file what’s known as a “case.”  

If you've already opened a case and you're wondering what happens next, check out this Help article.

With Etsy’s case system, members work together to resolve disputes that result in a non-delivery or are not as described.  

Here's a couple of things to keep in mind:

  • For orders made with Direct Checkout, you can only use one method of dispute resolution against sellers on Etsy. If you have filed a chargeback with your credit card company, you cannot also file a case. If you file a chargeback after opening a case on Etsy, that Etsy case will be closed.

  • You must have an Etsy account to open a case. That means that if you purchase an item using guest checkout, you'll have to register for an account on Etsy before you can file a case. This article has more information

  • To learn how to open a case for an order placed on an Etsy-powered website, please take a look at this Help article.

Case Time Eligibility

Eligibility to open a case is based on an order's processing time and “ship by” date. This Help article explains processing times and "ship by" dates.

Case eligibility is calculated by taking the processing time and adding a shipping time of 2 business days for domestic orders and 10 business days for international orders

If a seller does not provide processing times:

  • 5 business days will be automatically added as the default processing time.

If your order contains multiple items:

  • If each item has different processing times, the item with the longest processing time will be used to determine eligibility for the entire order.

  • If no processing time is given for any of the items in your order, the longest processing time will still be used. This would include the automatic 5 business day processing time if that happens to be the longest.   

If your order has a processing time, you can open a case until either:

  • 60 days after the expected “Ships By” date (+ relevant processing times) ; or

  • 60 days after the order is marked as shipped (+ relevant processing times).

Whichever of these dates happens first will determine the end of the case eligibility period.

Please note: If you were advised by Etsy to contact PayPal for a refund, you may have a limited time frame in which to file a claim for refund of purchase under PayPal's policies.

Transaction Eligibility

There are two types of cases that a buyer can open:  

1) a Non-Delivery case


2) a Not as Described case

A Non-Delivery occurs when a buyer places an order and submits payment, but does not receive the item. A few examples of Non-Delivery cases:  

  • An item was never sent.

  • An item was sent to an address that is not on the Etsy receipt.

  • There is no proof that the item was shipped to the delivery city/state and zip code.

Note: Etsy doesn't hold sellers responsible for shipping delays or errors, as long as the seller is able to prove that they shipped the item to the address on the Etsy receipt. If the item was shipped and the seller has a tracking number, the seller may be able to open a claim with the shipping service.

An item is Not as Described if it is materially different from the seller’s listing description and photos. Here are a few examples of Not as Described cases:  

  • The item received is a different color, model, version, or size.

  • The item has a different design or material.

  • The item was advertised as authentic but is not authentic.

  • The seller failed to disclose the fact that an item is damaged or is missing parts.

  • A buyer purchased three items but only received two.
  • The condition of the item is misrepresented. For example, the description at the time of purchase said the item was “new” and the item is used.

Not as Described cases can also be filed for late delivery. In order to qualify as late delivery, the buyer must provide proof that all of these conditions have been met:  

  • The item(s) were ordered for a specific date or event.

  • A deadline was agreed upon by the buyer and seller.

  • The item(s) are rendered useless after that date.

If an item is materially similar to the seller’s listing description and photos, it would not be eligible for a Not as Described case. Here are a few examples of what would not qualify as Not as Described:  

  • The defect in the item was correctly described by the seller.
  • The item was properly described, but the buyer simply did not want it after they received it. 

  • The item was properly described but did not meet the buyer’s expectations. 

  • The item has signs of wear and was correctly described as used condition.

  • The item was damaged during shipment. 

Ineligible Transactions

Some transactions on Etsy will not qualify for the case system. Some may violate Etsy's policies. Others may not be covered by Etsy’s case system. Some examples:  

  • Items that are purchased in person

  • Intangible items, including services

  • Prohibited items on Etsy

  • Transactions where payment is not made via Etsy’s Checkout system

  • Items that are returned without a return agreement

  • Items that have been altered, used, worn or washed after receiving

  • Physical or tangible items that are not available for return

  • Items that are received after the agreed-upon delivery date due to shipping delays

  • Cost of shipping disputes

  • Cases that have closed due to lack of participation

If a seller doesn't respond or resolve the case within one week from the date it was opened, the buyer can escalate the case for review by Etsy Dispute Resolution. 

If the seller doesn’t resolve the case, Etsy may issue a refund on the seller's behalf.

Some aspects of Etsy's case system are covered by phone support. Please note that we currently only offer phone support in English and German during US and EU business hours. To request a call, check out this Help article. Just be sure to choose Problems with an Order as the first selection on the contact page. 

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