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A-to-z Guarantee: Frequently Asked Questions
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What is the Amazon.com A-to-z Guarantee?
Amazon.com has built up a base of millions of satisfied customers over the years through an intense focus on being responsive to their concerns and acting quickly to resolve any outstanding problems. Amazon.com has been able to extend this valuable trust with our customers to other sellers in our marketplace through the A-to-z Guarantee Program. The vast majority of customers never need to use this reimbursement program, but for those who do, the guarantee claim helps gives customers a greater sense of trust and confidence in shopping from the broad range of sellers at Amazon.com.
What is covered under the Amazon.com A-to-z Guarantee?
When is a product "materially different" from what the seller listed?
If a seller has clearly misrepresented the condition or details of an item in a way that affects its value or utility, it is "materially different" and that seller should be willing to offer a refund or exchange. If the seller does not offer a refund or exchange, the buyer is eligible for our A-to-z Guarantee.
Items are considered "materially different" in these circumstances:
*Exception: Club editions of audio CDs should be listed against the detail page for the standard edition of the CD, even if the UPCs of the two editions are different, if the following criteria are met: 1) the content on both editions is identical and 2) a page with the UPC for the club edition does not already exist in the Amazon catalog. Use the listing comments to indicate that the item is a club edition. Format of the products (CD) must be identical.
When submitting an A-to-z Guarantee claim with the reason "materially different," the buyer will need to select one of the reasons above and provide comments explaining why the item they received is materially different from the item they purchased.
Please note that this does not extend to cases where the buyer is simply disappointed with an item. Amazon.com will ultimately determine material difference in accordance with the terms of the A-to-z Guarantee.
What is the difference between an A-to-z Guarantee claim and a credit card chargeback?
The main difference is that with the A-to-z Guarantee program, the customer is dealing directly with Amazon.com instead of their credit card company. When a customer contacts their credit card company outside of Amazon.com when they have a problem with a transaction, the customer submits a chargeback request.
For detailed information on chargebacks, please see our Chargeback FAQ.
When can a customer submit an A-to-z Guarantee claim?
When customers have a problem with a transaction made through Amazon Payments, we ask them to first contact the seller to give them a chance to address the issue at hand. The customer can file a guarantee claim if the seller does not respond or if the issue is not addressed to the customer's satisfaction. The guarantee claim eligibility window opens at 3 calendar days after the maximum estimated delivery date for the order, or 30 days from the order date, whichever is earlier. Customers may file a guarantee claim up to 90 days from the order date. However, we reserve the right to accept claims after that time frame, if we find an investigation into the matter is warranted.
How do I know when a claim has been submitted?
When a customer files an A-to-z Guarantee claim, Amazon.com will contact the seller via e-mail. Sellers can also track their A-to-z Guarantee claims online via the "A-to-z Guarantee Claims" link in their Seller Account. We encourage sellers to regularly check their Seller Accounts to be sure they are aware of all A-to-z Guarantee claims filed against them, even if they miss an e-mail message sent to them regarding a claim.
What happens after the customer submits an A-to-z Guarantee claim?
After receiving notification a claim has been filed, sellers have a prescribed number of days to respond to Amazon.com, but the sooner the better. It is very important for sellers to respond immediately and explain what happened with the order as part of this process involves assessing whether the seller is accountable for the problem.
Sellers can also go to the "A-to-z Guarantee Claims" link in their Seller Account to respond to claims. Amazon.com encourages sellers to check their Seller Accounts regularly to track and respond to A-to-z Guarantee claims.
In some cases Amazon.com may initiate a reimbursement to the customer while still working through the claim investigation with the seller. Sellers will know when this is the case because the claim status in the A-to-z Guarantee Claims page will be displayed as "granted" but the claim details will indicate that it is still under investigation. Even in these cases it is still important for the seller to respond to the guarantee claim e-mail, as Amazon.com reserves the right to recover reimbursed claim funds from sellers that are deemed responsible for the claims.
What is the best way for me to resolve A-to-z Guarantee claims?
Occasionally claims are filed for orders that failed to get fulfilled by the seller or for items that were returned. In these cases, immediate refunds initiated by the seller through Amazon Payments are the easiest and best course of action to resolve the problem.
If the item has been shipped or the seller believes it is not materially different than described in the item listing, then it is best for them to respond as quickly as possible and represent their version of what happened with the order or item. It is important for the seller to provide as much additional, relevant, and "compelling" information about the transaction or specific actions taken regarding the transaction, including but not limited to:
While Amazon.com does not currently require sellers to ship via a trackable method, we encourage them to do so for higher dollar merchandise.
I don't see a refund link -- how do I refund my buyer?
In some cases, Amazon.com may initiate a reimbursement to the customer while still working through the claim investigation with the seller. If a seller needs to initiate a refund for their buyer, but they are unable to locate a link to refund the transaction, the seller will need to contact Amazon.com directly to request assistance in initiating the refund. Sellers can contact us using our Contact Us e-mail form, and should include the order number for the transaction they would like refunded.
Am I required to represent A-to-z Guarantee claims submitted against me?
No. However, if a seller does not respond to a claim, they are automatically held responsible and reimbursement for the claim will be debited from their account. If a seller believes they should not be held responsible for the claim, they should respond as quickly as possible to the claim notification and represent their version of the transaction.
When am I responsible for A-to-z Guarantee claims submitted against me?
Sellers may be found responsible for A-to-z Guarantee claims in certain circumstances, including but not limited to the following examples:
The primary areas covered by the A-to-z Guarantee claim are items never arriving to the customer or items that are materially different than expected. If a seller is found responsible for an A-to-z Guarantee claim, Amazon.com reserves the right to debit the seller's account and/or recover claim funds that were previously reimbursed proactively by Amazon.com.
How can I tell the status of a claim?
The A-to-z Guarantee Claims page provides an easy reference to track and respond to A-to-z Guarantee claims. To get to the A-to-z Guarantee Claims page, sellers can go to their Seller Account and click "Review your A-to-z Guarantee Claims" under the Reports heading.
My buyer filed an A-to-z Guarantee claim which was resolved in their favor, and later my buyer successfully received the item. What do I do?
All payment for Amazon.com orders must be made through Amazon Payments, the only accepted payment method for Amazon Marketplace transactions. If the customer receives the item after a claim is resolved, the customer can contact Amazon.com to request that we recharge the credit card for the order.
My buyer won't return the item they filed a claim for -- what do I do?
Buyers are expected to work with you to make return arrangements for merchandise before filing a claim. If the buyer has received an item that is materially different and have not received a response from you with return instructions, he or she may file an A-to-z Guarantee claim for the purchase. Once a customer is reimbursed for an order via the A-to-z Guarantee, Amazon.com does not obligate that customer to return the item they received. However, you are welcome to contact your customer directly to arrange for a return of the item.
How was my buyer able to file a claim before the eligibility window opened?
The guarantee claim eligibility window opens at 3 calendar days after the maximum estimated delivery date for the order, or 30 days from the order date, whichever is earlier. Customers may file a guarantee claim up to 90 days from the order date.
However, Amazon.com may elect to reimburse a customer for an A-to-z Guarantee claim from time to time. In those cases, the claim will be investigated as usual, and the seller will be asked to supply information about the transaction as part of that investigation. If Amazon.com has elected to reimburse the customer for a claim, and the seller is deemed not to be responsible for that claim, then the seller will not be charged for the claim and Amazon.com will bear the cost of the reimbursement.
My buyer's claim was denied -- why is the claim still appearing in my account?
A record of each A-to-z Guarantee claim filed against a seller will appear in their Performance Summary, even if the seller's account was not debited in the reimbursement of the claim. The Performance Summary is designed to provide a comprehensive history of the A-to-z Guarantee claims filed against a seller, regardless of the outcome of the claim.
My account was debited -- what should I do?
If a seller has questions about why their account was debited, they will need to contact Amazon.com directly with their concerns. The best way to contact the appropriate department is to respond to the e-mail message sent to the seller which notified them that the claim was debited from their account. Sellers can also contact us using our Contact Us e-mail form, and should include the order number for the transaction they are referencing.
Please use the e-mail address associated with your Amazon.com Seller account.
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