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3 Steps to Delete eBay Accounts for You or a Deceased Loved One

This is part of Cake's collection of Digital Loose ends articles. Create a Cake profile for free to discover, document, and share your end-of-life wishes.

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eBay offers an exciting marketplace for both auction and “buy it now” items. Having an eBay account to either purchase pre-loved treasures or sell your own items is pretty common. But, you may have decided you are finished with your eBay days and are ready to delete your account. You likely have a bit of time ahead of you before the permanent deletion can be finalized—no matter how quickly you start.

Jump ahead to these sections: 

Similarly, if you’re looking to close an eBay account for a deceased loved one, you may have to communicate and then wait for confirmation that may take a couple of months. This can be worthwhile to tie up loose ends in your loved one’s digital legacy, but it’s good to be prepared for the wait.

Steps to Permanently Delete Your eBay Account

eBay cautions you to make sure that certain account details are accurate before you delete your eBay account. Make sure you have completed any purchases or sales and have no outstanding bids on auctions. There should be no suspension on your account or pending transactions.

1. Visit the deletion website

The eBay website contains a help page with a button at the bottom that initiates closing the account.

The help page itself is full of useful information about conditions under which you cannot delete your account. Once you’ve gotten to the button that reads “Close Account and Delete My Data,” click it.

2. Go through each step

If you aren’t already logged in, you’ll be prompted to log into your eBay account. The dialogue box will then ask why you are leaving. 

It’ll try to offer you a solution so keep your eBay account. Read all options carefully and, if you still want to delete your account, click only on the ones that continue the process of deleting your account.

3. Wait for 30 to 60 days without reactivating the account

After going through the deleting process, eBay will send you an email about your account. They delay the closure of accounts by 30 days, which allows you to halt the process if you re-activate your account. 

If you have recently purchased or made a sale, the delay will be longer— they may have to investigate to make sure that closing the account isn’t in any way part of fraud. At the end of the waiting period, you should receive a message that your account was deleted.

How to Delete an eBay Account for Someone That Died

Because eBay’s been around for a while, they have a process for handling the accounts of active eBay users who died.  Before you start the deletion process, the executor of the estate is an ideal person to contact. Another close family member may also choose to make the contact first to get the information about the account. While someone else might help with the sending of the messages or waiting for the representative on the phone, a close family member is best for the actual chat.

If you have the log-in information for the account, you can proceed using the same process outlined above. This might include situations where you are a secondary contact on the same seller’s account.

1. Use the eBay call features to skip the line

eBay offers two ways to contact them, if you proceed past the self-help sections of their website. These options are available during their business hours and not on holidays. They have a button at the bottom of the page that says “Call Us” and a button that reads “Have Us Call You.” 

You can use whichever one you prefer. While the options for the topic of your call aren’t perfect for your needs, you might try selecting “Account” as the topic and “Managing Your Contact Information.” This will help you at least get to the right departments.

If you just want a phone number to try, this phone number is one provided by the site: 866-305-3229. Using the website may guarantee more up-to-the-minute call information.

2. Explain your connection and submit documentation

When you call or the representative calls you, explain your relationship with the account holder. You'll also offer any information you have about their account, like username. 

They will request a death certificate, most likely, as well as potentially other documentation. The deletion process may not be able to move forward until all sales resolve, but eBay can help you work out what the best path forward would be for the particular account in question.

eBay Account Deletion: Frequently Asked Questions

eBay works to resolve all issues before deleting an account. Here are some questions you might run into in the process.

Can you delete your account on the eBay app?

Since the button to delete your account is on a help page, it’ll be easiest to delete your account from a browser, either on a laptop or in your mobile browser.

If you find this button through the app, however, you can try it.

How do you delete your PayPal or other financial accounts on eBay?

eBay’s site for automatic payments shows you can easily remove financial information. Sign in, click on “My eBay,” and click the “Account” tab.

Find “Financial Information” and once you click on it, look for any accounts you’d like to remove and simply click, “Remove.” Tada!

Are you allowed to delete your eBay account without a password or email address?

While this may be possible if you use your username to recover a password or create a new one, not knowing these two pieces of information will make deleting the account difficult. 

The exception is if you're a close family member and can provide documentation that the account owner is deceased.

Moving on from an eBay Account

Deleting an eBay account takes time. On the plus side, this time allows the company to ensure that your account’s deletion won’t cause trouble. Such complications are good for you, your customers, your sellers, or your financial institutions. 

Going through the process of managing digital assets after death can be time-consuming and can inspire you to think about your own digital legacy. Consider signing up for a useful password manager to hold all your account information and save family members hours of work in the future. Start end-of-life planning today—it’s not difficult and helps to protect and care for those you love.


Sources

  1. “Closing Your Account and Deleting Your Data.” eBay Customer Service. eBay. ebay.com/help/account/changing-account-settings/closing-account?id=4199.
  2. “Call Us.” eBay Customer Service. eBay. ebay.com/help/callus_click?topicId=4000&contextId=74429ed7-8314-4a3d-a9a7-1562c5748272&initFrom=HOME