Since I started this blog two or three years ago, the most popular posts by far in terms of traffic, comments and email was the post I made when PayPal banned my account. Followed closely by the post about how I got my money back from Paypal, and finally the post I made when Pay Pal removed the limit on my account.
To this day, these three posts about my problems with PayPal bring more traffic than nearly all other posts combined (well, maybe not all the Drupal posts, but close). It’s been almost a year since those posts and I still get about 10 emails a month from other people who’s Paypal accounts have been ‘limited’ (aka banned) and their money hijacked for 180 days like mine was. Some of these emails are from people who’s financial lives (sometimes even their real lives) have been ruined by Pay Pal, and who usually claim they are 100% innocent.. Although I have gotten two or three that admitted they were breaking Pay Pal’s rules and wanted advice on getting their funds released..
All this traffic and interest is great for me and my blog – maybe I’ll start calling myself “The PayPal King” – but it’s not so great for people that “get screwed” by Paypal. and by that I mean when Paypal unilaterally decides to “limit” someone’s account and hold their money for 180 days (that’s 6 months!) when the person has done nothing wrong (as in my case) – leaving the person with virtually no recourse.
So since I can’t answer everybody’s email (i found a bunch in my junk-box months that were months old..I guess I should check there more often) I’m putting together this short synopsis of how I convinced Paypal to return my money before the 180-day freeze and remove the “limit” on my account:
What to do when Paypal puts a limit (bans) on your account and holds your money for 180 days:
- Don’t panic.. If you haven’t actually violated Pay Pal’s terms of service or policies, there is still hope. I have received at least a-dozen emails/blog comments from people who got their money back within hours/days of following my advice
- If you did violate PayPal’s terms, then.. well.. I hate to say it, but you’re probably fucked.. give up now
- Write an email: After you calm down, write a letter/email to PayPal. Explain why you’ve been a good customer, and why you feel there has been a mistake. In the email be sure to let them know what actions you are willing to take if they don’t resolve their mistake to your liking. For an example, see the email I wrote to Pay Pal.
- Address your email to as many PayPal bigshots that you can. Do some Goog’ling because the names may have changed, but this is who I sent mine to last year: email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; RDutta@paypal.com; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org
- Spell-check, cross your fingers and hit SEND
- Remain professional: If all goes well, expect a phone call or a email response. In your discussion(s) remain professional and courteous. Don’t do what this guy did when his PayPal account was ‘limited’
- Come back here and post a comment if it worked!
That’s really all I did to get my Paypal account un-limited and most of my funds released, and I can’t really offer any advice beyond what I’ve already posted. For those that it does not help, there is always Google Checkout..