Complaints that item is expired. But expires in 1 year

When a customer has buyers remorse on a non returnable item, and they complain ‘item is expired’. Though expiry is 1 year out. It has happened a few times, and now in account health, it says that it’s a repeatable offense. Then my orders completely tank. (2 orders today, and it’s 6 pm. Normally 30) even items with no BB and I’m the lowest, are not selling. Support is obviously not helpful. Has anyone successfully fought this? Thank you!

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I do not know as I have no expiry on my items.

But - where in your Acct health does it show? Under Compliance, I guess.

Did your Acct health rating drop signifigantly? Any other issues there?

I DO KNOW, THAT if your ODR raises above 1% you are F*%$king screwed for 60 days, as I had 8 A-Z claims made in error, and I contacted the customer, who had High level buyer support, and attempted for 4 weeks to get amazon to remove, reverse, which they finally did.

Problem is that my sales cratered for those 60 days + another 30+ before it recovered.

I know @ASV_Vites sells product that expires, he will surely give you the real world lowdown on what can be done.

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I second the @ASV_Vites tag and will add @Sundance @primetime and @casbboy, who might also have items that expire. And perhaps @maintak?

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Welcome to the SAS, Becca.

It certainly sounds like Amazon’s automated mechanisms (‘Amabots,’ if you will) might’ve targeted you via the multiple approaches which they monitor for feedback from the Buyer Community - hence the ‘repeated offense’ warning.

That said, Amazon is notoriously finicky about Expiration-Dated Inventory, primarily because it seeks to avoid regulatory-body fines for not offering FIFO (an acronym for “First In, First Out”) valuation methodology in its fulfillment network.

That reality is compounded by various other factors, mainly of a Amazon Global Selling Program nature - e.g., it’s not particularly unusual for any participation in AGS to wind up (more-or-less ‘unwittingly’) facilitating, in one Amazon Marketplace Region or another, the sale of an actually-expired item.


May I make so bold as to ask whether your Listing-Offer upon the Amazon Global Catalog ASIN in question is FBA, FBM, or both?

Sorry, I don’t sell anything with expiry dates. The closes I come is I sell items from a couple of manufacturers who date their warranty from the date of manufacture of their items instead of installation or sale. The shelf life for these items then becomes the point where the warranty expires, but that’s an entire different kettle of beans from the OP’s issue.

Welcome to the forum @Becca. I’m sure someone who knows more about this than I do will be along shortly.

I’ve had it happen with fbm and fba (and obviously when the item comes back to me, it is not expired)

Are you FBM? If not, how long have you been selling this item? ETA - went straight to responding without reading the entire thread.

I hope you know that FBA doesn’t rotate stock.

FBA sellers manage this by assigning a different sku within the ASIN and manage it that way with the inventory.

This is a massive PITA but we don’t do it because most of our listings have a 3 year shelf life and move well. The combination of inventory limits and the occasional delay on our end often leads to inventory getting low enough at least once a year to make us feel comfortable, hoping and not necessarily knowing that FBA has moved through the batches that are older in time.

You’re absolutely spot on though about the BS reasons. 2 “Not as described” returns within a 1 week period sent our top seller (70K units a year), with 5000+ reviews (4.5 Star Avg) into review last week and scared the ever living snot out of me.

All it takes is Billy (who has no idea what he’s looking at), at FBA to decide there’s something wrong with what he’s seeing in the inventory and it’s game over until you can fight your way out of the suspended listing.

I’ve already made a few requests through our SAS manager and other feedback to Amazon about an “Opt in” program for returnless refunds for categories that Amazon doesn’t allow returns in.

This stupid “newish” policy causing your situation, my situation, unnecessary NEGATIVE reviews.

More stupid Amazon stuff.

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Thanks for the thorough reply!
You’re right. If I could just give them an option to return, they wouldn’t have to lie about the expiry just to get a refund. But. How in the world to get past this. If I spoke to support and they actually understood the issue, can they remove the ding on the account? Is there a better time to call to get an English speaking representative? Or a department to ask for? This buyer also has ‘signature recommended’ so it shouts scam artist even before the shipment is delivered.

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the way I read @ASV_Vites reply is that there is ZERO YOU CAN DO.

fYI, he pays big bucks for premium help, and if they can not fix - no one can

I would prepare a detailed appeal type message on this that includes your records that prove what they bought was not expired.

There’s no way to get someone in the states. It can happen by accident but that’s very rare.

I don’t see this working out great unfortunately. One of the many reasons we spend thousands a month for Amazon SAS management.

Oh no, I believe they would fix this. They have fixed plenty for us which is the reason why we still have it.

We also keep very detailed records of what lot is shipped where, when… WITH PICTURES which I have been told are worth a thousand words.

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Buyers are afraid they won’t be able to return for free if they don’t criticize the product, so they will say stuff like “defective” and it’s insane.

When it comes to Expirations, I removed the expiration variable from my listings. I just hope Amazon Does FIFO and the turnovers keep happening.

Worst that can happen is people get some faulty bags, which is not end of world.

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I do this but my volume is not as extensive as @ASV_Vites. It allows me to track and manage what is in FBA, I can discount older product if the newer product is going out faster.

Since this is an Account Health issue you should be able to request a call with an AH rep with the Call Me Now button on the Account Health page. The few times I have done so, I have reached a domestic ‘english speaking’ rep. Better quality help than Seller Support.

Definitely have this ready before calling and attach documentation once they have opened the case. I often do so while still on the phone so we can discuss it.

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I don’t know the product but I just wanted to chime in and say if it was a year supply of a product 1 a day 365 pills this would also apply.

“At the time of check-in at Amazon fulfillment center, all products must have a remaining shelf life that allows sufficient time for the product to be consumed in full, plus an additional 90 days. For example, a bottle of supplements with 240 daily servings must have a remaining shelf life of 240 days and an additional 90 days, which makes 330 days.”

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This gets my vote. I am getting a few of these:

For problem FBM orders, I send free replacements ( after very politely asking if they could provide photos for my records - but not requiring them. All have willingly complied to date; but FBM order problems are rare).
FBA units are sent-in packaged ready to ship, in the same manner as the FBM units so delivery defects are not a huge problem yet (so far, knock on wood, there’s still the possible ‘hammer in the same box’ potential).
Unfortunately an unauthorized seller on a few of my listings takes less care - their struck-through feedback shows a track record of poor prep practices - and buyers are reacting to the FBA no refund policy in the reviews.

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This shelf life figure may need updating for successive shipments to be accurate, another reason to use dated SKU’s. As manufacturer, @ASV_Vites can control dating consistency. I cannot, I source from a manufacturer and the remaining shelf life can vary with each production date.

@Becca
I would check for a discrepancy between the actual shelf life and what is recorded in the listing before talking to account health.

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Very good point on the policy…

Something that is (a year’s supply for example when it comes to servings), already has 455 days against it on day 1 per the policy.

That’s an FBA thing, not something a customer would know or report (FBM). Algorithm fun only but it is logical when it’s doing what it’s supposed to…

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If we get an expired complaint it shows in " Product Condition Customer Complaints "

We submit an invoice showing that it’s new and they take the complaint away.

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I agree, just pointing it out. You never know if someone was a FBA RA seller of pills though.

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To clarify: The mfr dating windows are consistent, it is the relation of the production date to my wholesale order dates that causes variance.

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