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Is eBay exempt from state auction laws?

Offline Travis

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Is eBay exempt from state auction laws?
« on: February 08, 2014, 04:16:36 PM »
I was recently contacted by someone who was upset that an auction was cancelled on the site and he mentioned that under Texas auction law, it's illegal to cancel an auction after a bid is received unless there is a reserve. I'm sure other states have similar laws. Now, I explained to the gentleman that with storage auctions cancellations were very common and that the seller reserves the right to refuse any bids and/or cancel the sale completely.

It got me thinking, if so many states have adopted laws like this, is it technically illegal for someone to cancel their eBay listing?

Some states even require you to be a licensed auctioneer to hold an auction. Does that mean that you're technically breaking the law by listing an auction on eBay if you live in one of these states?

Offline Alias300

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Re: Is eBay exempt from state auction laws?
« Reply #1 on: February 08, 2014, 07:05:46 PM »
I can't see how there could be a law against retracting an item after a bid has been placed, in specific fact.  Its to broad.   There has to be an "unless" in there.  Unless there is a reserve, unless owner pays first....
 I'd like to see the law he is talking about.


As for ebay.  Your not auctioning item, your probably not auctioning in the USA....

Ebay is auctioning item for you, probably from some nice tax haven po box on an island that hires one dude to come in and forward the mail......

Offline alloro

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Re: Is eBay exempt from state auction laws?
« Reply #2 on: February 09, 2014, 10:06:39 AM »
is it technically illegal for someone to cancel their eBay listing?

If done without just cause it is a civil matter, not a criminal one because once you place a bid you've entered into a contract with the selling party. Retracted bids are allowed only under certain reasonable circumstances, such as a minor made the bid, the seller misrepresented the item(s), or an error was made when entering the bid (for example, entering $2000 instead of $20.00).

Offline rulesforrebels

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Re: Is eBay exempt from state auction laws?
« Reply #3 on: February 10, 2014, 11:07:35 AM »
if it is a law its a law which has never been enforced and most likely never will be enforced. especially with bigger ticket items most people have it for sale on ebay and craigslist locally. if you sell locally first and befofre you can pull the auction it sells locally you dont have the product anymore.

Re: Is eBay exempt from state auction laws?
« Reply #4 on: February 10, 2014, 12:27:38 PM »
I think that that law applies to lien sales. Ebay is not a lien sale site. You're selling your personally owned property. In storage auctions, once the auction is started, and bids are placed, the owner of the locker can only bid on the unit. Online storage auctions can cancel the auction up until the unit is paid for at the facility because the auction is not considered completed until the unit is paid for.. This is how I understand the law.

Offline Alias300

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Re: Is eBay exempt from state auction laws?
« Reply #5 on: February 11, 2014, 11:06:29 AM »
I think that that law applies to lien sales. Ebay is not a lien sale site. You're selling your personally owned property. In storage auctions, once the auction is started, and bids are placed, the owner of the locker can only bid on the unit. Online storage auctions can cancel the auction up until the unit is paid for at the facility because the auction is not considered completed until the unit is paid for.. This is how I understand the law.

This has been a cause of trouble at some auctions.
I've been to some where manager comes running up and stops bidding because owner is there to pay.  Another the unit was bid on and over and guy went to pay only to be told it was paid up.

I like my main auctioneer.  He dictates that the notices say "by 11am" and will hold auction 30 minutes later or by "the 13th" and hold auction on 14th.  We have actually had to stop and stand around for a while because on one unit he saw it said 12pm and it was 11:56. 
Once he starts it's gone to the highest bidder.  End of story.

Re: Is eBay exempt from state auction laws?
« Reply #6 on: February 14, 2014, 11:20:37 AM »
This has been a cause of trouble at some auctions.
I've been to some where manager comes running up and stops bidding because owner is there to pay.  Another the unit was bid on and over and guy went to pay only to be told it was paid up.

I think property managers and auctioneers read the law into their favor. Obviously, property managers want the tenant to come back and pay up his/her past due. Auctioneers want to sell the locker to get paid. So, auctioneers will most likely say, "the auction is underway, too late for the tenant.", whereas the manager will say "the auction's not done until I get cash in my hand."


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