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If something you ordered hasn't arrived

This advice applies to England

If something you’ve ordered hasn't arrived, you should contact the seller to find out where it is.

It’s the seller’s legal responsibility to make sure the item is delivered to you. They should chase the delivery company and let you know what’s happened to your item.

If your item wasn't delivered to the location you agreed (eg it was left with your neighbour without your consent), it's the seller's legal responsibility to sort out the issue. 

If the item doesn't turn up, you’re legally entitled to a replacement or refund.

Get the item delivered again

You can write to the seller and ask them to deliver the item again. You should do this if the item wasn't delivered within a reasonable time or the item wasn't delivered by an agreed date.

Our template letter can help with this.

Include these lines

"Failure to deliver within a reasonable time and outside of the agreed deadline is considered to be a breach of contract.

I am now making time of the essence and request the item be delivered within 14 days of receipt of this letter."

Get your money back

You can ask for your money back if you don’t receive the item either:

  • within 30 days of buying it
  • on the date you agreed with the seller - if it was essential to receive it by then (eg for an event then or shortly after)

If the seller refuses to give you your money back, you should put your complaint in writing - follow their complaints procedure if they have one.

If that doesn’t work you could:

  • contact their trade association - look on their website for this information, or contact them to ask
  • use an alternative dispute resolution scheme - it’s a way of solving disagreements without going to court, where a third party will mediate to try and reach a solution

You might also be able to get your money back through your bank or payment provider - this depends on how you paid.

If you paid by debit card

Contact your bank and say you want to use the ‘chargeback scheme’

If you paid by credit card

If the item cost less than £100, you should contact your credit card company and say you want to use the ‘chargeback scheme’

If the item cost more than £100 but less than £30,000, contact your credit card company and say that you want to make a ‘section 75’ claim to get your money back.

If you paid using PayPal

Use PayPal’s online resolution centre to report your dispute. You must do so within 180 days of paying.

Report to Trading Standards

If you think the seller’s broken the law, for example, by taking your money and refusing to deliver your item, you should report them to Trading Standards. They may be able to investigate and even prosecute the seller, but won’t usually be able to get you your money back.

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UAT (Release)