Dec 19, 2010

PayPal Troubles, GCash Store Temporarily Closed

Yesterday, I received an e-mail from PayPal that forms part of every e-tailer's nightmare:

Hello (my full name),

To protect you from problematic transactions, we sometimes request additional information about PayPal payments.

We need more information about this transaction. Please log in to your PayPal account, click the "Resolution Center" tab, and provide more information by 12/24/2010.

We recommend that you not ship the item until our investigation is complete. If you've already shipped the item, please log in and let us know where you shipped it.

We have placed a temporary hold on the funds until we complete our investigation.
Summary: "We have found reason to be suspicious of a transaction that went on in your PayPal account, and to protect ourselves from chargeback, we have decided to hold all funds from the involved account until we have decided whether to give it back to you or refund the buyer."

The thing is this: I don't keep funds in my PayPal. The moment they're in, I send them right to the bank, because that's the only way I can spend them.

So what happens is PayPal takes away money that isn't there, and I end up with a negative balance that will eat up whatever comes into my account.

Wonderful news for Christmas season. And two days before the writers are due to get paid ... GAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!!!!

(Dear writers, don't worry. I will find a way. Rather, the Boss will make one. He always does. Still, I'm sure even Moses' blood pressure rose slightly as the horse hoofs came thundering and he came face to face with that ocean.)

"So what happened, Blessie?" you may be asking.

Well, I'm not sure, but I suspect it's this: one of my old-time clients sent advance payment to reserve GCash. The problem was, the stock had already run out, as usual, so I had to send the exact same amount back.

Since the payment was sent voluntarily, not requested for, there was no "Refund" button. As far as PayPal could see, what happened was somebody sent me money, and I sent it back for no apparent reason.

And PayPal thought I was helping this person get cash advance from his credit card this way. (Yes, it's a he, and a very nice-sounding he, too, but he's married, ladies, so I can't introduce you). And that's not allowed under their terms.

Hence, the inconvenient investigation.

How long does such an investigation take? PayPal says it could take as long as 180 days. Fortunately, PayPal has operations on Saturday and Sunday as well, so at least it's not 180 working days.

But the gist is, the money I'm using to buy the GCash that I sell to you, loyal patrons, is completely trapped in PayPal. Please pray with me that this issue gets sorted out, well, by Monday, so that operations could return to normal.

In the meantime, we wait.

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