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Have you seen someone take commissions with the following in their terms: you must pay the PayPal fee (calculate it at a site like www.ppcalc.com)?

Every time I run across someone with those terms, I tell them this is against PayPal's terms of service. Some respond 'oh, okay' and remove it, others argue with me and say it's not against their terms. One person has said they will refuse to work on the commission unless I do pay the fees.


I contacted PayPal directly regarding this to get final word on whether this is a violation or not.

Here is my question:

When I am shopping online, I often see people have a rule that if you pay with PayPal, you have to calculate the "paypal fee" and add that on top of the price of the product or service. Some people will refuse to ship or work if they do not receive the "full amount" (without the paypal fee added in).

Is it against the paypal terms of service for these people to do this? What should I tell them if they order me to pay the paypal fee on top of the purchase price?



Here is the official response:


Thank you for contacting PayPal Customer Support. My name is Flordeliza and I am happy to assist you with deal with merchants asking you to pay the processing fees.

Thank you for letting us know what other merchants are doing to avoid paying for the processing fees. Yes, this is against PayPal's terms and conditions. I am sorry to learn that you had to deal with them.

Please be advised that PayPal charges the seller the processing fees for receiving payments. It should be free sending payments.

Should you encounter merchants like these again, I advise you against proceeding with the transaction. You may also contact us or eBay to report merchants who do this. You already did a transaction with one of them, you may leave a negative feedback on eBay so that other buyers are notified, as well.





It's a trend, especially here at DeviantArt, to ask your buyer to pay the PayPal fees. Don't do it. You can be reported for it, and PayPal even encourages a buyer to leave negative feedback for asking you to do it.

If it bothers you so much to lose a couple of dollars off your transaction, raise your prices across the board for all payment processing methods so you get the amount after whatever fees that you want.



Please +fav if you want to help spread this.
Comment if you have any thoughts?
Not sure where to put this, so I guess I'll put it under Projects.
Add a Comment:
 
:iconpechaberi:
pechaberi Featured By Owner Oct 7, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
I really don't like when people do this honestly
Reply
:iconeriu-dawn:
Eriu-Dawn Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
whoa...sometimes I choose to send a little extra to an artist I commission so they get the full amount but they never ask for it. I do a lot of buisness on ebay, will deff keep my eye out for this! thanks!
Reply
:iconinsacove:
Insacove Featured By Owner Jun 5, 2015   Digital Artist
I'll remember this for whenever I'm not broke.
I seem to always be broke since no one's ever interested in my stuff.
Fuck.
Reply
:icononeiri:
ONEIRI Featured By Owner Jun 5, 2015  Student General Artist
Thanks for this helpful information!
I just paid for some adopts/commissionsers that required me to pay a payment...now I know V.V *sigh*
Reply
:iconnexeron:
Nexeron Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
If I for instance want 10 $ for a commission and want to get EXACT 10 $ for some reason, should I post the price incl. fees to solve the problem?
Reply
:iconviralremix:
viralremix Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2014
Build the fees into the price. Say it's $11 for instance.
Reply
:iconnexeron:
Nexeron Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Yes that's what I mean. If people really want to get the full amount, they should do that
Reply
:iconemocx:
emocx Featured By Owner Mar 17, 2014
i didn't know about that :omg:
thank you for the info :hug:
(seems like i ask buyer to pay paypal fees on my adopt, must remove them naow!!!)
Reply
:iconwrittenruse:
WrittenRuse Featured By Owner May 24, 2013
I really don't understand ANY of this PayPal fee stuff. Possibly explain it to me?
Reply
:iconviralremix:
viralremix Featured By Owner May 24, 2013
Which part?
Reply
:iconwrittenruse:
WrittenRuse Featured By Owner May 24, 2013
Basically: WHAT PAYPAL FEE?!
Reply
:iconviralremix:
viralremix Featured By Owner May 24, 2013
There's a fee to receive a payment via PayPal. I believe it's 30 cents and 2.5% percent or something along those lines - you could find more detailed information in the TOS of PayPal.
Reply
:iconwrittenruse:
WrittenRuse Featured By Owner May 24, 2013
So what is everyone griping about? That they have to pay the fee? (Sorry, it's been forever since I last touched my PayPal account.)
Reply
:iconviralremix:
viralremix Featured By Owner May 24, 2013
Pretty much, yes - though it's a cost of doing business and should be worked into the price beforehand.
Reply
:iconwrittenruse:
WrittenRuse Featured By Owner May 24, 2013
...
I will never understand the human mind.
Reply
:iconkayajima:
Kayajima Featured By Owner Apr 1, 2013  Professional General Artist
well i actually find it unfair that the seller should pay the fees when you buy something in stores you have to pay the taxes as well! if you commission people and you dont give them what they actually ask its pretty mean in my opinion! those people work hard for their money (if you count the hours they have to work for only $10) you come to something like $1-2 .... and you even want to pay them less money as it is now ?
Reply
:iconviralremix:
viralremix Featured By Owner Apr 1, 2013
Sales tax is different from the cost of doing business. Sales tax is the law.

Let's say it is $10, and after paypal's fee they get $9.50. Would they have that $9.50 at all if it weren't for paypal's services?
Reply
:iconkayajima:
Kayajima Featured By Owner Apr 1, 2013  Professional General Artist
well i just think that if you agree to pay a sepcific amount of money and they only get 95% of it its very mean
Reply
:iconviralremix:
viralremix Featured By Owner Apr 1, 2013
But you did pay that amount. $10 is coming out of your bank account and going through the transfer. Should you have to pay someone's state and federal income taxes too, because they don't get that money?
Reply
:iconkayajima:
Kayajima Featured By Owner Apr 1, 2013  Professional General Artist
well then let me put it this way the paypal fees are costs that "occur" during the sale/production of the product you want to buy.

lets say to produce your product they merchant has to pay $9 then he wants to sell it for $10 to earn $1 each but paypal wants $0,50 of it which halfs the income of that merchant! what would you say if you only get the half of the money than you got yesterday? well the only solution for the merchant is to increase the price instead of your merchant whos just honest and tells you why it costs more the other merchants just increase the price to $11 or something.
Reply
:iconviralremix:
viralremix Featured By Owner Apr 1, 2013
First, that's such a bad profit margin to even bother with selling that proverbial product. It's generally accepted that cost should be 1/3rd the sale price.

The merchant would have to either:
1) forgo the sales earned through paypal, which would lower cash revenue (most merchants would agree that paying a fee is a good deal for getting higher revenue)
2) raise the price, which is a reasonable choice

I have nothing against people raising the price. I don't care what the reason for the raise is nor do I particularly care to know. It's their choice to set their price as whatever they want, I just shop based on the price.

But let's take this example:

Let's say that a merchant in a brick and mortar store can make $10,000 a month in cash sales.
If he or she takes credit cards, which cost 4.5%, the store's income can increase to a new $15,000 a month in sales.
Yes, yes, they're losing $225 to the cost of the credit card, but it's still $4775 they didn't have before in cash flow.

Or they can choose to reduce their cashflow back to $10,000 a month and not pay any fees. But that's a poor business choice.
Reply
:iconkayajima:
Kayajima Featured By Owner Apr 1, 2013  Professional General Artist
its not wrong what youre saying actually im fine with not paying the fees to bigger merchants i was kind of talking about small people for example those who offer comissions on DA its true that paypal enables them to do that but you both agree to pay (example) $10 and he has to pay the fees which is unfair in my opinion what instead would be fair is that you split the fee. you are actually using a service which wouldnt be possible without paypal aswell! if there wouldnt be paypal then you wouldnt have people offering good quality commissions on DA ... yes they could use the DA points but those actually even cost them 20%... people already count 100 points as $1 which i find fair! you agree to pay 100 points so theres nothing wrong even for you (they just raise the price)... its true that when you agree to pay $10 and you have to pay $10,50 or something like that its not right too but people actually tell you before you buy something that they want the fee to be paied by you so you actually agree to pay those $10,50 (at least on DA i see that people tell you beforehead)
Reply
:iconviralremix:
viralremix Featured By Owner Apr 1, 2013
Both parties paying half the fee is an interesting idea. It doesn't fit into PayPal's business model though. That's why they make it the seller's responsibility. PayPal's goal is to make it so a whole bunch of buyers are funneling through them, which reflects a lot in the fact that they don't have much seller protection and generally side with the buyer.

If they can tell you that they want $10.50 for the $10 product so you pay the fee, why don't they just raise the price to $10.50 or $11 so that they don't look unprofessional asking their buyers to pay the fee for them? It seems like a better choice all around.
Reply
(1 Reply)
:iconkayajima:
Kayajima Featured By Owner Apr 1, 2013  Professional General Artist
depends on where they live and where the guy who commissions them lives
Reply
:iconkayajima:
Kayajima Featured By Owner Apr 1, 2013  Professional General Artist
so you call it a trend and almost a crime that people want $10 if you agreed to paying them $10 for their stuff? actually paypal is the bad one here some years ago paypal was completly free! now they just put up those stupid fees...
Reply
:iconbenikowakahisa:
BenikoWakahisa Featured By Owner Mar 30, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
I don't really care if i have to pay for paypal fees because if I choose to commission someone, I want them to be paid in full. Besides it's only a couple of $//etc.. so hardly a major impact : )

Just my opinion, don't hate me for it hahaha!
Reply
:iconchibifuel:
chibifuel Featured By Owner Mar 30, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Hey man, thanks for putting this out. I would have never known.
Reply
:iconmetarex12:
Metarex12 Featured By Owner Mar 31, 2012  Student General Artist
So how does this work though? Does this affect everyone using PayPal even if the seller doesn't do art, but for crafts or literature or editing? If so, how would that work?
Reply
:iconviralremix:
viralremix Featured By Owner Mar 31, 2012
Regardless of what you're selling, service or product, PayPal still expects that you won't pass that fee onto the buyer (as a surcharge, at least).
Reply
:iconmetarex12:
Metarex12 Featured By Owner Mar 31, 2012  Student General Artist
Okay, but how would you add the PayPal fee to what you're selling or would you just not add any fee because I was thinking of how people charge some works like $5. Would that mean that have to increase it to like $7 or something along those lines to cover PayPal fees?
Reply
:iconviralremix:
viralremix Featured By Owner Mar 31, 2012
Yes, if Paypal fee is something you want to build into your price as an expense, figure out how much you'd have to charge beforehand and set your prices accordingly >W<
Reply
:iconmetarex12:
Metarex12 Featured By Owner Mar 31, 2012  Student General Artist
Okay.
Reply
:iconreaper145:
Reaper145 Featured By Owner Mar 20, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Sorry to bother you... This is pretty old XD
But I didn't know that :O So when I ask commissioners to send the payment as a gift, that's wrong? If so, I'll stop immediately ;_; I've seen so many artists ask that so I thought it was okay.
Reply
:iconviralremix:
viralremix Featured By Owner Mar 20, 2012
Indeed it is absolutely wrong @_@ Dangerous for both buyer and seller.
Reply
:iconreaper145:
Reaper145 Featured By Owner Mar 20, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks for the info ^^; I feel bad now... but I've taken it out of my journal, so it won't happen again.
Reply
:iconmsmissy87:
MsMissy87 Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2012
gotta add in my 2 cents, my personal stance is i prefer people pay the trasaction fee since i tend to only make $1.5 an hour on artwork then paypal fee and shipping on top of it?? i do say i prefer you pay the fee since im doing your piece cheap. it depends on the artist i know but if you dont want to i dont make a big stink.. i could always bump up my prices and make more an hour and not feel i need to be irritated over a fee. it is buyers choice though. i may make you wait longer though if im not happy. happy artists make better artwork muuuuch faster.
Reply
:iconderangedhyena:
derangedhyena Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
Since people are still being misinformed by this and I don't stand a chance of getting a journal visible enough to counter this: it is not against the Paypal TOS for a seller to have some kind of 'handling fee' on their transactions.

From the TOS:

4.6 No Surcharges. You agree that you will not impose a surcharge or any other fee for accepting PayPal as a payment method. You may charge a handling fee in connection with the sale of goods or services, as long as the handling fee does not operate as a surcharge and is not higher than the handling fee you charge for non-PayPal transactions.

A "handling fee" is perfectly acceptable. It is to commission artists what shipping&handling is to any online retailer. It can vary depending on origin/destination countries, and is a completely legitimate part of any transaction. It is also just as legitimate for them to offer metaphorical 'free shipping' and compensate by raising the base price of the commission. Which approach they use is a personal preference about how to conduct business, nothing more.

The only way that this practice can be against the TOS is if the seller has multiple methods of payment and it is more pricey to utilise Paypal than the other methods. It is also technically against the rules to call the charge a "Paypal fee" (implying that you are charging people to use Paypal, which could lead to buyers discriminating against them due to cost), but if you only use Paypal or if you set this handling fee across the board based on Paypal's rates, you have not violated the TOS.

Nothing gets under my skin more than someone with a lot of broadcasting power providing bad information. :no:
Reply
:iconehcs:
ehcs Featured By Owner Apr 14, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Thank you so much for this information. I was shocked when I read the journal because I found it unfair for it to be 'illegal'.
Reply
:iconviralremix:
viralremix Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2012
PayPal's response to my question - whether sellers can ask their buyers to pay the fee - is clear. The information is not "bad" though it's unfortunate you disagree.

If you would like to contact PayPal and receive a different answer I would be happy to update my journal with it, but otherwise their position is clear and this practice can lead to discipline on an accounts
Reply
:icon4pplemoon:
4pplemoon Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2012
Except it is. The TOS in itself said you can charge the fee as handling as long as you don't explicit say it's PP fees. If you charge your customer a handling fee that is the PP fee, it's fine. If you don't make the handling the most expensive option (which is rare, tbh), it's all gravy.

And PP reps already shown that they rarely grasp the legalese in PP's TOS. But the writing is on the wall. This journal post has been basically about pointless debate about semantics.
Reply
:iconderangedhyena:
derangedhyena Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
Did you ask them the revised question as posed in my previous reply to you? As stated prior, the agent thinks you're talking about an eBay transaction. Different rules apply.
Reply
:iconviralremix:
viralremix Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2012
Here is what I sent her--

"Hello Flordeliza,

Is it still against PayPal terms of service to request that the buyer pay the PayPal fee outside of Ebay? So, if I come across a seller on an independent, non-Ebay site that advertises that buyers must calculate and add the PayPal fee on top of purchase price, is that allowed?

Thank you."

I will update when I get a reply.
Reply
:iconderangedhyena:
derangedhyena Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
From my prior reply: "Feel free to ask Paypal their opinion on the matter, with the caveat that the charge be presented as a "handling fee" and not a Paypal fee. Of course they're going to say that Paypal fees are not allowed... because they're not."

:no:

You're arguing verbage. It's silly. My point still stands. They're going to say it's not allowed, you're going to say you're right, I'm going to shake my head and stop wasting my time here because you're not even reading what I write. Hopefully people will read the comments and be better informed. Ciao!
Reply
:iconsushi:
Sushi Featured By Owner Dec 5, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is fairly old, but i went ahead and emailed Paypal about what you're talking about. Awaiting their reply but the fee should be considered a handling fee. Its handling fee because if you think about it, the artist has to draw it for you after it's paid for or they worked hard on it, took time out of their life and created something based on your guidlines or such and thats would be considered handling, yes? A surcharge is just more like a "Hey im charging you a surcharge because i feel like i deserve more" sort of thing.

I also dont feel that charging a handling fee (considering it the paypal fee) would be unprofessional because honestly, the artist doesnt HAVE to be nice and spend their time making you happy. They could just draw up something and give it to you, regardless if you liked the outcome or not.
Reply
:icon4pplemoon:
4pplemoon Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2012
THANK YOU.

It seems people rather clutch their pearls on the audacity that people request their buyers to pay for the fee and not using some murky fee to pay it off or not expect comissions as actual businesses for profit.
Reply
:iconmann-of-lamancha:
Mann-of-LaMancha Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
On a purchase for gasoline, they buffer up the cost of the gas if you purchase with a credit card. Cash is usually a lower cost.

If artists start getting reported for asking the commissioner to pay for those fees, they will probably just change tactics. First they will ask how you intend to pay, then just buffer in the cost and tell you that's what it will cost.
Or artists might just buffer in the paypal cost and you pay the costs whether you use paypal or cash (thereby inflating the overall cost for artwork).

For some reason, I don't see trying to fight artists about this will be a positive move in the long run.
Reply
:icondeecollage:
DeeCollage Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
It's been a long while since I've last made or received payments through Paypal but this is a good thing to keep in mind in case it starts up again. Thanks for giving this back to the DA community. :meow:
Reply
:iconxadrea:
Xadrea Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
interesting...i've never come across buyers tacking on extra fees for purchases, that just sounds shoddy all the way around lol
Reply
:iconivysaur98:
Ivysaur98 Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
I never knew this could happen, mainly because I don't have a paypal.
But I will keep a lookout for this anyway.

Ivysaur98 out.
Reply
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