Alert: Internet Vehicle Scams on Craigslist and Other Non-eBay Sites
eBay's Vehicle Purchase Protection covers only certain vehicle transactions that are completed ON eBay.com. If a Craigslist or non-eBay seller 'promises' you the eBay protection plan, this is fraud and you should walk away. Learn more.
Common warning signs:
- Vehicles advertised well below what it is worth may be tempting, but should be a red flag. If it appears too good to be true, it probably is.
- You are unable to see the vehicle in person first or have it physically inspected prior to payment
- There is an urgency to complete the sale quickly because the seller has a health or family issue, is being deployed to the military, moving out of state/country or is going through a divorce/marriage
- Seller pushes to get money in advance and transferred through a fast payment method, or sent to a fake escrow account to avoid you as the buyer losing out on the deal before another buyer purchases the item first
Criminals want to lure you into feeling safe and may also disguise their websites or emails to look like they are from eBay, when they are not. View additional warning signs and examples of vehicle scams.
Vehicle Purchase Protection
- Vehicle Purchase Protection is only offered on transactions that are completed on eBay.
- eBay discourages the use of offline transactions, including payments made via Moneygram, Western Union or gift cards. These types of payments are often associated with fraudulent transactions.
- Vehicle Purchase Protection does not cover any damage on vehicles 10 years old or older (10-year threshold is based on model year).
- Vehicle Purchase Protection does not cover any damage on a vehicle listed with anything but a "clean" title.
- For items purchased on or after September 1, 2016, your eligible vehicle purchase is protected for up to $100,000 or the purchase price paid, whichever is lower. For items purchased prior to September 1, 2016, your eligible vehicle purchase is protected for up to $50,000 or the vehicle purchase price, whichever is lower.
- See additional exclusions to the coverage of Vehicle Purchase Protection below.
Vehicle Purchase Protection (VPP) provides protection, against certain losses associated with fraud, up to a maximum amount of your purchase price paid (not exceeding $100,000) for purchase of an eligible vehicle on ebay.com or through the eBay mobile application. The types of fraud that are generally covered are:
VPP is not an insurance policy, a warranty, a solution for buyer's remorse, or a substitute for buyer diligence (i.e. pre-purchase research and inspection). We encourage you to perform appropriate research and exercise proper care and judgment in the purchase of any vehicle.
- non-delivery of the vehicle,
- undisclosed defects in the title, and certain undisclosed defects with the vehicle.
VPP is automatically included at no additional cost when you complete the purchase of an eligible vehicle on ebay.com or eBay mobile applications.
VPP is managed by an independent service provider (the "VPP Administrator") that is not affiliated with eBay Inc. ("eBay"). All VPP requests will be processed by the VPP Administrator. Restrictions and limitations are set forth below.
Purchases are covered by VPP when all of the following criteria are met:
Purchases are covered by VPP in the situations below:
- Successful purchase* of, and payment for, a vehicle with a purchase price of more than $100, listed in the eBay Motors Vehicle category ("eligible vehicle").
* A purchase is successful if you receive confirmation in My eBay that you won, or purchased, the vehicle through an auction, Buy It Now, or Best Offer.
- This is your first reimbursement request under VPP in the last 180 days.
- The buyer, the seller, the vehicle, and the financial institutions on which payment was drawn, and to which payment was made are located in one of the fifty United States or Canada on the purchase date.
- You obtain the VPP Administrator's prior written consent before altering, repairing, selling, or releasing possession of the vehicle before a determination is made on your reimbursement request.
- You are able to provide the VPP Administrator with documentation to substantiate all purchase payments and/or estimates for repair, related to your reimbursement request within 14 days of your reimbursement request.
- You comply with the filing deadline and requests from the VPP Administrator (regardless of any shipping delays you experience).
You pay for a vehicle or send a refundable deposit for a vehicle and never receive the vehicle.
- You pay for a vehicle and receive it, but suffer a loss because:
- The vehicle was determined by a law enforcement agency to have been stolen prior to your purchase.
- The vehicle has an undisclosed or unknown lien against its title.
- The vehicle make, model or year is different than what was described in the seller's listing at the time you placed your bid or offer. Note, however, that VPP does not protect you if the seller's description was inaccurate with respect to the vehicle's sub-model, trim packages or special editions.
- You did not receive a title from the seller (and a title is required by both your state and the seller's state) and it's not possible to obtain a title from the appropriate DMV.
- The vehicle had a title with one of the following undisclosed brands (salvage, rebuilt/rebuildable, unrebuildable, reconstructed, scrapped/destroyed, junk, lemon, manufacturer buyback or flood/water damage) at the time of the end of the listing. (This protection is not available for vehicles listed in the Dune Buggy, Race Car or Trailer categories.)
- The vehicle is less than 20 years old and has more than a 5,000 mile odometer discrepancy from the mileage stated in the seller's listing. (This protection is only available for vehicles listed in the Car & Truck and RV & Camper categories.)
- The vehicle is less than 10 years old (based on model year) and has undisclosed damage to the (a) engine, (b) transmission, and/or (c) body/frame (each a "qualifying component"). The cost of repair to each qualifying component must exceed $1,000. For vehicles listed in the Bus, Commercial Truck, and RV & Camper categories, the cost of repair for the undisclosed damage to each qualifying component must exceed $1,500. For vehicles listed in the Boat category, the cost of repair for the undisclosed damage to each of the engine or the hull must exceed $1,500. This protection is not available for vehicles listed in the Race Car or Aircraft categories. Vehicles that are subject to a recall for this type of damage are not eligible for VPP.
Purchases and/or associated losses are NOT covered by VPP in the examples below:
- Any damage on vehicles 10 years old or older (10-year threshold is based on model year).
- Regular maintenance and fluid levels.
- Normal wear and tear, including but not limited to belts, hoses, tires, brakes, bushings, joints, spark plugs and wires, interior features, minor dents, paint chips and scratches.
- Certain components
Damage after purchase - Damage or loss caused during shipping or otherwise after purchase.
Cosmetic damage, such as paint or external surface rust.
Any damage on a vehicle listed with anything but a "clean" title.
- Damage to any component (other than the combustion engine, transmission, and/or body/frame), including but not limited to the vehicle's interior, exhaust, air conditioner, electrical (including the battery or other electrical components of a hybrid or electric car's engine), suspension, cooling system, turbo charger, fuel system, differential, clutch/torque converter, and/or pollution control devices; or
- Damage to qualifying components that does not exceed $1,000 (or $1,500 for vehicles listed in the Boat, Bus, Commercial Truck, RV and Camper categories).
Sending a non-refundable deposit for a vehicle and not receiving the vehicle, or a refund, because you chose not to complete the transaction or pay the remaining balance for any reason.
Punitive damages, lost profits, loss of work, travel expenses, or restocking costs.
Title / ownership issues
Misstatements about the type of title brand, for a vehicle listed with anything but a "clean" title.
Failure to receive a certificate of title for a vehicle that was listed with a title brand or with the title being described as anything but "clean".
Receiving a title that is not signed, is improperly assigned, or receiving a title but not being able to register the vehicle (unless you are unable to register the vehicle due to an undisclosed lien against its title).
Losses based on a vehicle classified as "theft recovery" or "previously stolen" but recovered by a law enforcement agency prior to being listed on eBay.
Any damage or listing discrepancies that were disclosed to you prior to taking possession of the vehicle.
Any damage that could have been discovered upon a reasonable inspection before you paid for and picked up the vehicle in person.
Any damage that does not impact the safety or operability of the vehicle.
Repairs or alterations made by you to the vehicle without the consent of the VPP Administrator.
Inspection costs, warranty fees, taxes paid, or any other fees or expenses that are not expressly covered under these Terms and Conditions.
Transactions occurring off-eBay or on any other website.
How to request reimbursement?
We find that the basis for many reimbursement requests is often a simple misunderstanding between a buyer and a seller. As a result, we encourage you to first try to resolve any issues through communicating with the seller.
If you can't resolve the issue with the seller, submit a reimbursement request no later than 45 days** after the listing end date. You would generally receive a reimbursement determination and payment (if approved) within 45 days after the reimbursement request was submitted.
Upon eBay's review of your reimbursement request, you will be provided with instructions to submit your request directly to the VPP Administrator. The VPP Administrator will contact you within a couple of business days to obtain additional details about your request and to discuss the appropriate next steps. You will be required to substantiate your request by providing, for example, damage estimates from no fewer than two approved service facilities (at your expense) or allowing the VPP Administrator to inspect the vehicle at any time.
Any action taken by you during the review process without the VPP Administrator's consent, that impairs the VPP Administrator's ability to mitigate any potential loss, will void your eligibility for VPP reimbursement.
eBay and the VPP Administrator will determine: (1) whether you are eligible to participate in the VPP program, (2) whether you have suffered a loss, (3) if the loss was caused by the type(s) of fraud that qualify for a VPP reimbursement and (4) the reimbursement amount.
** There are two situations in which the time for filing a reimbursement request may be extended:
- If you learn that your vehicle is a stolen vehicle, you will have 365 days from the date that the listing ended to file for reimbursement.
- If you receive the vehicle but do not receive the title, or learn that it is subject to an undisclosed lien, you will have 90 days from the date that the listing ended to file for reimbursement.
How much will the reimbursement amount be?
In each case, including the examples outlined below, the maximum amount you may receive is limited to the purchase price, not exceeding $100,000, for items purchased on or after September 1, 2016. For items purchased prior to September 1, 2016, your eligible vehicle purchase is protected for up to $50,000 or the vehicle purchase price, whichever is lower.
If you pay for the vehicle, but don't receive it, you will receive your purchase price amount paid, up to $100,000.
If you pay for the vehicle, but after taking possession discover that there is an undisclosed lien against the title, you will receive the lesser of: (i) the purchase price paid and (ii) the amount necessary to clear the undisclosed lien, up to $100,000.
If you pay a refundable deposit, but do not complete the purchase and the seller doesn't refund your deposit, you will receive your deposit paid, up to $100,000.
If you suffer a loss from undisclosed damage to a qualifying component of a vehicle you purchased, you will receive the cost of repairs determined by the lower of all replacement/repair estimates from two approved services facilities.
If you suffer a loss based on a year, make, model or odometer misrepresentation (above 5,000 miles, in vehicles less than 20 years old), the devaluation amount of the vehicle will be determined by the difference between the purchase price and the NADA clean retail value (see nadaguides.com).
In cases of extensive devaluation, or where part replacement costs are a significant percentage of the purchase price, the VPP Administrator may exercise their option to reimburse the purchase price (not exceeding $100,000), and take possession of the vehicle. If you refuse this offer, then the VPP Administrator may offer you a cash settlement of a discounted percentage of the purchase price.
Incidental fees or expenses that the buyer and seller negotiate outside of eBay are not covered by VPP.
If you qualify for a reimbursement and the VPP Administrator takes possession of the vehicle or the vehicle is returned to the seller, you will be reimbursed for original shipping fees up to a maximum of $800, provided that you originally used a licensed shipper to transport the vehicle from the seller to you.
Effect of other reimbursements
VPP protection is secondary to any other avenue of recovery. As such, any recoveries reimbursed or credited to you by any third party will be deducted from the reimbursement amount.
If the seller pays and/or offers you a settlement equal to, or better than, the amount you are eligible to receive under VPP, you will not be eligible to receive any payments under VPP.
Termination or Amendment
eBay may terminate VPP or modify these Terms and Conditions with or without notice to you. The Terms and Conditions of the VPP program specified on this page at the time that you purchased your vehicle will apply. It is your responsibility to periodically review these Terms and Conditions to ensure you are familiar with them at the time of your purchase.