Guitar Shipping Situation - Need Advice


Gold Supporting Member
Ok...I shippped a Taylor 12 string (loosen strings, etc) about a month ago. I have shipped many guitar so no issues with packaging. Shipped from Philadelphia to upstate New York (ie extreme cold weather). The person who purchased the guitar reported a crack on top below bridge (it definitely wasn't there when I shipped)
I was told that the receiver had to file a claim with UPS. My wife just called and said that the guitar is back at our house and the receiver rejected it?
What is my recourse? I shipped a perfectly good guitar and now am struck with on with a crack in the


I already received the paypal, so the receiver owns it.

If the receiver files a claim with Paypal the money will be either frozen or returned to him. Especially since he rejected the item and sent it back already. This is my worst nightmare regarding buying/selling guitars. Luckily, it hasn't happened to me yet.

Let us know how it gets resolved.


That is what I am confused about. If he opens the box, then he should not be able to reject it. Well "should". I get quite a few stuff sent to my house and have become a little buddy buddy with the FedEx guy. He lets me open up private sale make sure the stuff is there. But it's not like he waits around so I can inspect it. "Rejecting" a package, is when you refuse delivery. So how can he have time to inspect it, and then email you about the crack? With the UPS/FedEx person waiting there?

If he just sent the guitar back to you, on his own dime. Then he just sent you a guitar, tell him thank you for the gift;) j/k.


Did this guy communicate with you at all with his intentions ? Seems an odd thing to just up and return a guitar without notification :messedup.

It's somewhat risky shipping guitars this time of year in the cold ares but it should be made clear to the person receiving the guitar NOT to open it if it is cold as the exposure to sudden warmth will cause cracking to the finish or wood . It's best to leave the guitar in the shipping box unopened overnight to allow the temp to normalise slowly .

Last Nerve

There is no magic tone in a decal.
Gold Supporting Member
I'm sure he got in touch with Paypal, and they told him in order for him to win a dispute, he had to send the guitar back to you. Now did he send it with SIGNATURE CONFIRMATION?
If he did NOT, and he's being an ASS about it. I would not email him or Paypal. If/when the money comes out of your account, THEN contact Paypal. Tell them you didn't receive the guitar back from the buyer.

I had this happen once with a guitar I bought. I was checking it out and found all these chips DOWN TO THE WOOD on the backside. So I stop and email the seller. He says it must have been the tremolo arm or something, but he doesn't want to help very much. Upon going back and looking further...the missing pieces were NOT in the case, which meant the guitar was put back in there that way. I contacted Paypal and told them the guy shipped me a damaged guitar. They instructed me to ship it back to him with SIGNATURE CONFIRMATION and then contact them afterwards. It was delivered to his office, someone there signed for it, other than him. He emailed me PISSED off, said he was shipping it back, yadda yadda. Then a week later, after he realizes I now have my money back and his guitar, he emails me asking me to ship it back to him.
Which I did..about a month later. Mind you, this was YEARS ago, maybe five years, so maybe things are different with Paypal now.

But the buyer should have been in contact with you about this. I can't recall who has to file the shipping claim, but he should have been in contact with you, asking for your help, any pictures of the guitar, etc.

Let us know what happens.


Gold Supporting Member
Ok...a couple of updates. After emailing today, he doesn't see to know why they shipped it back. He thought they were looking at it to either accept or reject his claim. He seems sincere about it, but who knows.
He did send it back with a signature confirmation:( (my wife had no idea) but no issues with paypal (yet).
We will see where this goes but unfortunately, I might be out over $900


Gold Supporting Member
Find out if he has made a claim with the shipping company. If the carrier sent it back to you and is paying off the buyer, no problem. If the buyer sent it back without a shipping claim, you are hosed. You cannot submit a shipping claim after it has been re-shipped.

PayPal consistently comes down on the side of the BUYER.If the buyer supplies documentation that he sent the guitar back, you WILL get a chargeback for the sale amount.

Worst case scenario: you have the guitar back, you have it fixed, you resell it. So you will not lose $900 - only the sum of the repair bill and any depreciation due to repair. Not great, but better than no guitar and no money at all.

I hope it works out.


You can refuse a package after it was delivered, all you have to do is give it to any UPS driver or UPS drop off location and tell them you are refusing it.

It's very simple.
If your buyer wants a refund you have to give it to him.
You (the shipper) have to file a claim with UPS, your chances are not so great but let's hope it will work out. (the receiver can not file a claim with UPS, they can initiate one but if there is a refund it always goes to the shipper)

It sounds like the buyer initiated a claim, UPS picked it up for inspection and then returned to to the shipper (you) pretty standard procedure for them.
If they approve a refund to you, it will be for the repair or cost of replacement.
Do you have a UPS account? UPS rep?
If so call him if they give you trouble.


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