Changed mind about about taking Amazon to small claims court - very worried


I started a money claim against Amazon, as several items I sent, value of several hundred pounds, were missing when the FBA shipment was received by Amazon - 21 units out of a shipment of 41 were missing. They eventually (after about 3 months) admitted liability for some of them, but for eight of the items I was told that the investigation was closed. I was told this before they admitted liability for the other 13 items. I was never given a chance to contest that those items were missing, as they closed the investigation on those eight units as soon as they had finished receiving them. Right from the beginning I was told that the investigation on those eight units was completed.

After getting nowhere and being told repeatedly that they would not open an investigation on the lost items, I felt I had no choice but to take it to the small claims court. I thought I had a good case. This morning, I received documents from lawyers representing Amazon, who intend to defend the case. I am now extremely worried that the fancy lawyers will win and I will have to pay all the costs. Should I stop the claim? The only real proof I have is the weight of the shipment and the fact that the shipment was checked and counted by both my partner and myself prior to shipping. I have asked UPS for a stamped receipt, but they say that this is not available, as it was an internal shipment and a BOL is only used for international shipments. I am really worried and wish I had never started the money claim. Also, if I stop the claim, will I get a massive bill from Amazon’s lawyers for work already done?


From a quick Google and so not legal advice:

“Things are very different in the small claims court where the general rule is that neither the Claimant nor the Defendant can get their costs paid by the other party (apart from fixed costs like court fees, witness expenses and expert’s fees). Each party has to pay their own costs and no-one else’s, whether they win or lose. Very occasionally a court decides that the loser has behaved unreasonably and so orders them to pay the winner’s costs”

“If a party decides to spend thousands on solicitors and barristers in a small claim, it is unlikely to be able to recover them from the other side even if the claim is successful.”


That is extremely reassuring, but, as you say, I will have to check the reliability of this information. Thank you.

I would welcome any further advice on this, if anyone has had a similar experience.


Is it Amazon who is using the term BOL?

The reason I ask is that I’ve always understood BOL to be used in the context of international shipments too. This is how we use the word in the UK. However, in the US it’s used differently, at least as far as Amazon are concerned.

I had an FBA shipment a while ago which was being delivered by a 3rd party carrier in the UK to a UK FBA warehouse. As part creating the shipping plan on Amazon they ask for a BOL number, but since this was originating in the UK, there was no BOL number.

When I asked my carrier about the BOL number they explained that Amazon just mean the delivery note number. As it turned out there was an issue on this particular shippment so I had to supply Amazon with a copy of the delivery note. Fortunately Amazon accepted that and everything was ok.


I think this is where the confusion may have lain. I was probably taking advice from US sellers. I may ask UPS if they can supply a delivery note instead. I find dealing with UPS a bit like pulling teeth, to be honest.


It’s important to note that you have the right to pursue your claim in court, and Amazon cannot simply ignore your claim or refuse to investigate it. If you have evidence that the missing items were in your shipment, and you have not been able to resolve the issue with Amazon, then you may have a strong case.

In terms of the legal costs associated with your claim, if you withdraw your claim within the prescribed time limits, you should not be liable for Amazon’s legal costs. However, if you withdraw your claim after the deadline or if the court decides that you acted unreasonably in bringing the claim, you may be ordered to pay some or all of Amazon’s legal costs.

Regarding the evidence you have, the weight of the shipment and the fact that it was checked and counted by you and your partner prior to shipping may be helpful evidence, but it may not be sufficient to prove your case. It’s important to gather as much evidence as possible to support your claim, including any communication with Amazon about the missing items, any invoices or receipts, and any other relevant documentation.

If you decide to proceed with the claim, it’s advisable to seek legal advice to help you prepare your case and to represent you in court if necessary. A solicitor can review the evidence you have and advise you on the strength of your case. They can also help you understand the legal procedures involved in the case and the potential costs.

Ultimately, the decision to continue with the claim or withdraw it is up to you. It’s important to weigh the potential costs and outcome of the case before making a decision. If you have concerns, it may be helpful to speak to a solicitor who can provide you with tailored advice.


To resurrect an old thread, despite denying all the facts I presented them with, Amazon’s lawyer’s eventually settled out of court, paying every penny including court costs. Curiously, as well as settling, they missed the deadline for submitting their defence, so the court said I could have started a CCJ against them. I don’t know if they just cocked up, or if they always play these games.

But here is why I wanted to update this thread - I nearly backed down and withdrew the case several times. The letters I was sent by their lawyers were scary and made out I would have no chance of winning. Draw your own conclusions…


I believe you have the right as the petitioner to have the hearing at your local court, So amazon’s Solicitors would need to take the cost of either travelling to the courthouse, or hiring a 3rd party Solicitor to attend and argue the case for them. Both of which could be rather costly, even if they do win, it is unlikely that you would be forced to pay their fees/expenses (unless the judge thought that you were just being spiteful and wasting everyones time)

Most of the time it easier and cheaper to just pay the plaintiff off, even if they believe they will win, and if theres any small chance they will loose, then its not worth the time/money involved.

Well done on not backing down though, if they can scare you away then they don’t have to pay at all :wink: