The Amazon INR Three Second Rule

It is Back To School Season for us, it is the end of back to school sales. For this reason we get aggressive on making the delivery on time. I don’t want any family disappointed when the item does not show up before school opens. The line of items are intended for the first day of school.

The customer has indicated the item did not arrive, late yesterday about 4pm.

We shipped early, we expedited the shipment, this is a on demand item, shipped same day. UPS ground arrival should have been in two days.

It arrived September 9th at 8:45am in by UPS. Yes, we used Amazon buy shipping.

I provide them with the INR template, that we modified. We try to humanize our company so they know we are not a big bad corporation. For those that need one @Lost_My_Marbles has a good one here. What are you most common INR addresses? - #25 by Lost_My_Marbles

I had several bookmarked on the old forum but… sorry different thread.

A few contacts with the customer from 4pm, explaining how to file an A-Z. I said, Amazon has a way set up for you to get a full refund, we use their shipping for this reason. The first step is to contact us, you did that so we can move on to the next step. Walked them through how to file an INR, this has always worked for us.

At 9:58pm last night they send a message, “We discussed a refund today but the only option I get is to contact the seller. Can you please assist?” :man_facepalming:

At 10:01pm I got this message through the customer messaging system, yes I know it is just the AZ rep taking action on a customer request. However, if I respond, I respond to the customer.

This is Amazon’s Customer Service team. A customer reached out to us with some questions about a purchase they made from you. Here’s a description of the issue:

Product: B099999999
Order number: 112-12345678-9012345

Return requested: No

Reason for contact: customer is asking the refund , please explain and issue the refund

Please respond to this request within 48 hours.

Amazon Customer Service

:woman_facepalming: :man_facepalming: :woman_facepalming:

Ok, it was three minutes, not three seconds, though I do subscribe to the three second rule.

Thoughts on this? I am thinking of creating some screen captures, and will share here if I do. But it is a busy day and not sure that I can get to it.

I would contact seller support, but I ain’t going to kiss anymore monkeys, I never get a prince.


I’m confused here - the item was timely delivered, what’s the actual complaint?


INR (Item Not Received) they did not get the package.

It was to an apartment complex, one of our largest INR delivery locations.

The main issue is the Amazon Customer Service Rep (Customer facing) told us to refund in 48 hours. That is not Amazon Policy. We know the wait is three days after contacting the customer. We have indicated that to them. They want it and they want it now!

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After I provide them the initial instructions, I just keep replying with the same instructions. They either don’t get the message, don’t want to wait the time for the claim to be filed, or just get fed up with clicking chat box AI BS or whatever. I also include the Amazon customer service phone number for those who cannot figure out Amazon’s sometime contradicting instructions. For example, all packing lists indicate something is returnable but if it is customized, there won’t be a return button in their orders. The buyer facing info to file an A-Z, instructs go to orders and select “problem with order”. There is not always a “problem with order” button. The whole process is confusing to many.


Some variation of this.


Amazon has made the path to the INR request difficult to get to. We went through this with a customer back on Aug 26, 2023. It seems to be an attempt by Amazon to deflect and defer INRs back to the seller which would then minimize Amazon’s exposure to cover INR and have the 3p seller take the fall out.

We agree … a current path via images needs to be established but would do so by creating a PDF with images to attach to a reply.

This was our follow up reply to our customer …

Hi {{{Customer}}},
As we instructed before, the process for receiving the refund is through the Amazon A to Z claim process for an “Item Not Received”. You will need to contact Amazon as per Amazon A to Z policy through the “Help Button” for this order. We also suggest contacting you local {{{ insert - post office or UPS }}} and alerting them that you did not receive the package.
Again … to receive a refund, please contact Amazon to file an A to Z claim for an “Item Not Received” as per Amazon policy.
Thank you,
{{{ Your Business Name }}}

Any message after that we would mark as No Reply Needed and, depending on how aggressive or threatening the email, would report the email as such.

We understand how sensitive it is when you are dealing with back to school as some of our orders fall under this scenario. However, we think, as 3p sellers, a solution to Amazon’s move in making the current path to A to Z process difficult has to be found for any of us to help our customers in a way that doesn’t have us (the 3p sellers) look like the problem to the customers.

The best we have to offer currently is the secondary template above. We will try to create a PDF path to provide for the customers to follow.


This may work, I know I personally hate to call however, she has already called late last night. Thus the response from the Customer Service Rep with the incorrect instructions.


Yes and this is the solution, it has worked for us in the past. I know this since customers have told us it did, and we see the A to Z and no charge to our metrics.

I linked your original template here as I thought it would be a good learning experience for new sellers. Or sellers getting their first INR. Also to illustrate how Amazon CSR’s do not know the rules, or worse they were instructed to deflect. Making it the sellers fault in the eyes of their customer.


We should have a path PDF / template ready in a short while to post as we just captured the images needed (just 3 needed). We are working on cleaning up the sensitive info (and getting morning shipments ready) so might be a couple of hours.


That is great, again I think that this is something that would be great for all visiting SAS. Happy to know you are in the same position, working on shipments for today.

Business is Good, Life is Better.


Can you share this with us? I don’t even know the correct phone number, so your letter is going to be far better than anything I have.


Just chiming in to say to @Image that you have made a good faith effort to resolve the Buyer’s issues within Amazon policy.

You could simply respond to this sequence by saying

“Unfortunately, it seems that the Amazon representative with whom you spoke did not understand the situation. Your item was supposed to arrive no later than [DATE]. It was delivered on [DATE] via UPS. Amazon will not offer a refund for delivery related reasons until [DATE], after which time you must go through Amazon’s system [DETAILS], as described in prior messages. We as the Shop can not provide a delivery refund directly because that would be in violation of Amazon’s shipping and delivery policies. We apologize for the inconvenience.”

And then…mark additional contacts as NRN.

When was it supposed to arrive? :thinking:

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@packetfire don’t forget that you can check this SellersAskSellers members-only thread for message templates: Message Templates.

And @wadeorcas and others, if you have a good one, please post/add it!

All, if you see one that should be included, please reply to the thread with a link.



Isn’t there a requirement to wait (48 hrs?) past delivery window before they can file an INR claim?


UPDATE: @packetfire, you can find what you need in this updated post. @wadeorcas reply already there!

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That is a good response, if it is not in the SAS library it should be.

I did respond this morning with, “Thank you for letting me know about that roadblock. Let me work on something to help with this. It is Amazon Policy to file an A-Z claim for the refund. I am sorry the Customer Service Rep did not understand that.”

For the record;

  • Ship By Sept 7th
  • Shipped Sept 7th (We have same day shipping set up for this item, they are made on demand)
  • Sept 7th Printed label sealed package 12:14pm
  • Sept 7th Driver Pickup 4:20pm
  • Sept 7th Local Depot scan 6:17pm
  • Sept 9 Delivery scan 2:41pm
  • Delivery promise Sep 12 - Sept 14

Therefore, though the Amazon CSR had no clue how 3P Shipping works when you have used Amazon Buy Shipping, I bet the bots do. Since today is Sept 14th, one of the rules is it must be past the last delivery date to file an A-Z.

Good in most cases, stinks in this one.

Also since many of our products deal with children, or expecting families, we are very liberal on what we do to make life simpler. Most times “Did not arrive” and we send a new one. This one was $80 and I know Amazon pays less than they charge us for shipping. Fine, but then they need to self fund the delivery insurance.

Thank you for the help everyone. Been around the sun 12 or more times since starting on Amazon. It is nice to have a place to share, get help or help others.

Still working this issue…

ETA Yes, thank you @bookwormapril It took me writing out those bullets to come up with that as one of the problems here. Who knew, I would get slapped for being to early. That and the mom in the messaging, explained the disappointment of not having the item before the first day of pre-school, last week. The catalog page clearly showed the delivery date, along with the cart page. Though our sensitivity to on time delivery, on the door step 5 days before required.


Most all of the previous CHC (“Customer-facing Help Content”) pages specifying that have been deprecated, but the two-known iterations of “About A-to-z Guarantee” @ & are still extant.

The SHC (“Seller Help Content”) page on that policy is currently titled (it has undergone many revisions since 2016) Amazon’s A-to-z Guarantee claims (link, Seller Central).

The problem here has always been the fact that Amazon has long been known to honor the policy more in the breach than in the observance - there’s a reason why certain provisions of the ASBSA have been worded as they have - which abrogation seemingly is getting to be an even-more common occurrence in 2023…

You rock, and I gotta wonder what the Buyer’s issue really is :neutral_face:

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Thanks, I just tried to PM you but that is not available in your profile. I see you changed the keywords I was looking for INR but could not find that. And I could not add it.


I think you mean tags? Yep, I added fbm!

And I’m sorry that you could not add INR, but is because we don’t have that tag yet, will create and add now. After that, it should be available for all. Great suggestion and thank you!

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