Tuesday 12 Dec 2017

Broken & Shoddy Products

One of the most common examples of product fraud on Alibaba.com is the delivery of broken or shoddy products.  Your products might arrive obviously damaged or defective, or they might seem fine at first, but quickly break down after only a few days or weeks.

If your supplier intentionally sent you broken or shoddy products, then it is clearly a case of fraud.  However, if you bought the products “as is” and took receipt of them, your supplier is under no obligation to fix or repair the products – or issue you a refund.  As long as he delivered your order, he has legally fulfilled his end of the bargain and is entitled to your money.  Even if you complain to Alibaba.com, you probably won’t get your money back.  Plus, once the products are in your possession, the supplier can always claim that you damaged them!

Even if the supplier agrees to fix the products, you’ll probably have to ship the products back to him – at your expense – thus wasting more time and money.  And there’s a good chance he’ll just send back more junk – if anything at all.

Some scammers will intentionally buy broken or shoddy products at rock bottom prices – and then sell them on Alibaba.com at regular prices.  These scammers will use nice-looking photos to entice buyers.  If you ask for samples, you’ll be sent good quality products to bait you into placing an order.  Of course, once you place your order and transfer your money to these scammers, all you’ll receive in return is a bunch of junk.

The “beauty” of this scam – and why it’s so common on Alibaba.com – is that it’s often technically legal.  Unless you negotiate specific quality standards with your supplier and put it all in writing, he can pretty much deliver whatever quality of products he wants.  And once you’ve taken receipt of the products, he’s now technically entitled to your money – even if you placed your payment into an escrow account.  He can claim your money from the escrow agent.

This kind of product fraud works particularly well on small overseas orders, where the buyer doesn’t inspect his products before taking receipt of them.  In these transactions, the buyer has to rely on the honesty of the supplier.  But if the supplier is a scammer, then the buyer is basically wasting his money.

 

broken-products-alibaba

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