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Dwayne B.
Dwayne B., Lawyer
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 33399
Experience:  Practicing for over 20 years and handled many cases and trials for consumers.
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Have a collector muscle car, 2097 Shelby GT listed on EBAY.

Customer Question

Have a collector muscle car, 2097 Shelby GT listed on EBAY. Dec 5th the car is bought by someone in Texas. I sent a congratulatory note discussing picking the car up, when, payments, etc. sent through the EBAY email system. I receive a reply from buyer saying they didn't buy the car and don't know what I am talking about! Then ask, "what kind of a scam are you running?" I explain it is no scam, that EBay notified me that the car was sold to them along with their address in Texas and EBAY ID name, etc. They reply again that they do not know what I am talking about, etc. I cancelled the sale through EBAY thinking that was the right thing to do, even though they would have had to make the buy as it takes more than checking a box to buy a car on EBAY Motors. I figured the buyer would respond with a thank you or whatever. Instead I received no reply and they went to EBAY and left Feedback that only a buyer can leave for a seller giving me a Negative Feedback review and adding, "Total Scam". I was unaware of them doing this until Tuesday the 8th and then realized they had ruined my almost perfect rating of 99.5 by their feedback. It was now 87.0 and this along with their false "Total Scam" comment has ruined my excellent seller/buyer reputation. No one will but my car now or in the future due to this. I sent them a personal email a few days ago asking them to retract the false allegations within 24 hrs or I would take legal action against them. This was after I went through the EBAY system of reporting a member, etc with no reply from anyone. I never heard back from the buyer. Friday the 11th I called EBAY to get this settled. They told me they cannot get involved in this type of action and cannot remove a negative comment or feedback. After explaining this long story to the representative, they agreed it was not warranted and did go in and remove the comments and restoring my previous excellent rating. Problem is it will be eithe Tues, the 15th or Thurs. the 17th before their system updates. So now This false defamatory info is still on the site and my account and will be for several more days. They have ruined my ability to sell this car because even if and when the rating is restored, the damage is done, because these cars are seen by a lot of people in this hobby and will always associate the car, with me being a scammer. No one will ever notice or know it was a false accusation. I want to sue this buyer for the cost of my car, plus, the mental and phycological damage I've suffered because of this. I am in dire straits to liquidate this property in order to save my house, etc due to poor business at this time. Now I will not be able to sell it anywhere because folks who look at these cars on this site also look stupid the various other national forums and classifieds that list cars such as mine. Can I sue them? One problem is that only a buyer cN leave a feedback on a seller, but since they denied buying the car, and I cancelled the sale, how and why did they do this? I have all emails, EBay correspondence, etc. proving they did this and would not remove it. What are my options?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 1 year ago.

Hello and thank you for contacting us. This is Dwayne B. and I’m an expert here and looking forward to assisting you today. If at any point any of my answers aren’t clear please don’t hesitate to ask for clarification. Also, I can only answer the questions you specifically ask and based on the facts that you give so please be sure that you ask the questions you want to ask and provide all necessary facts.

FIrst, as to "what are my options" I need you to be more specific in your question(s) if you could. When we answer general ones like "what are my rights" or "what are my options" we have to give general answers and, invariably, the customer responds with "I already knew that". This type of forum works better if you ask specific questions so we know exactly what you are looking for.

I'll go over your other questions one by one, since they appear to provide information on that general question anyway.

Can I sue them?

Yes, you can sue for slander or libel. However, you have to be aware that those are difficult causes of action because your lawyer's fees will be high, the cases almost never settle, and you will almost certainly have to sue them where they are located. In addition, some eBay agreements have arbitration clauses so you will have to get the lawyer to subpoena a copy of the agreement in place at all time relevant to this action.

In addition, your measure of damages isn't the cost of the car so you can't sue for that amount or at least not phrased like that. You can sue for mental anguish on a slander case and if the car has reduced in value then you can sue for that reduction amount.

Please ask any follow ups you have in this section.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
if I have to take $5-$7,000 less I can sue for that plus what ever my doctor says this event did to me mentally? How is a price put on that?
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 1 year ago.

Yes, that's correct.

As to how to value mental anguish, that's hard to do. The way it is usually handled is to take the amount of the medical bills and any medications that the doctor prescribed for anxiety or things like liek that and then multiply them X 3 and use that figure. However, when valuing non-economic damages it is always a guess and is really determined by how upset the jury is at the other party and how sorry they feel for you.

If your question has been answered then I'd offer my best wishes to you and ask that you please not forget to leave a Positive Rating so I receive credit for my work.

Of course, please feel free to ask any follow up questions in this thread.

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