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Can I sue Ebay for Unfair Business practices?

Grand Rapids, MI |
Filed under: E-commerce

I am a stay at home father and have fought tooth and nail to get my ebay store up and going. After a year of hard work just this week my wife cut back her overtime at one job and put in for a schedule change at her other. Well Ebay blind sided me by removing 20 listings of mine and freezing my account but hasnot given me a reason. They have requested a copy of my ID credit card statement and invoices for the items I am selling as proof that I do have them, The problem is that can take three days . I have already lost a lot of business and will continue to not to mention the time (hours and hours) it takes to list this stuff. Keep in mind I have a very good feedback status. Also they are require this information without yet giving me valid reasons,

Attorney Answers 2


The internet may be the final frontier. Not all the possible legal issues in cyberspace have been resolved yet. One might contend that the ebay EULA is an adhesion contract. It certainly lacks any real "meeting of the minds" or even a level playing field for those who wish to conduct e-commerce with it. Where is the consideration each party should give for a valid contract? Perhaps if you continue to correspond with them, you may be able to resolve the dispute amicably in a satisfactory manner.

[Due to the limited format of Avvo, this is not "legal advice", nor does it form an attorney-client relationship.]

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You conduct your business as a private commercial enterprise. So does eBay. The agreement between the two of you controls what you can do, and what eBay can do, with respect to the storefront that you created on eBay's servers [thanks to eBay, by the way, for creating the opportunity for you to even do business via the internet]. That agreement was written by eBay and you agreed to it. Some of the terms of that agreement are here:

You agreed via that agreement that eBay could shut down your store, or take down certain of your offerings, at his discretion. It has done so. You don't like that action, but you agreed that it could occur. Now you have to live with that reality and deal with the take down on its merits. Whether eBay's reasons are "vaild" or not is not your call. The take down was permissible -- the question is whether your offerings should be re-published. As to that question you need to work with eBay.

FYI -- eBay is not a public utility. You have no "right" to open an eBay store. The matter is wholly contractual. And if eBay does not want to deal with it you it most certainly does not have to.

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