At some point in your Amazon selling journey, you will experience losing inbound Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) inventory to Amazon Fulfillment Centers (FC). While Amazon handles most of the work for FBA sellers, they are still responsible for shipping their inventory to designated Amazon warehouses.
During this time, there are a lot of things that can happen to your inbound shipments. One of which is getting lost during transit. Aside from that, product units can also be misplaced or lost even after all boxes are properly received in the FC.
Even though Amazon is a well-established company, they also make mistakes. Every day Amazon’s warehouses receive tons of packages and it is not surprising that some of them may be lost, damaged, or misplaced. If one of your packages is lost during shipment or items get lost in the FC operations, you can ask for a reimbursement.
What is an Amazon FBA Inventory Reimbursement Claim?
If your package is lost, damaged, or misplaced while in transit or when it was received in Amazon’s FC, you may be eligible for a reimbursement claim. There are different kinds of claims a seller may file and the process varies depending on where your item is damaged or lost during the fulfillment process.
Here are the different Amazon reimbursement claims.
- Shipment to Amazon – Items are damaged or lost while in transit to FCs.
- Fulfillment Center Operations – Items are damaged or lost by one of Amazon’s FCs or any facility that is operated by Amazon once they have received the items.
- FBA Customer Returns – Items that FBA customers returned were damaged or lost.
- Removals – This is for items that are damaged or lost by Amazon or their carrier while removing the seller’s inventory from an Amazon warehouse going to the seller’s return address.
To be eligible for a replacement or reimbursement it must be:
- The item should be sent via FBA when it was damaged or lost.
- The items you sent should match the quantities and description in your shipping plan.
- They must comply with FBA inventory requirements and product requirements and restrictions.
- The item is not damaged by the customer or is not defective.
- The product has no pending disposal request from you or from Amazon.
- Your selling account is in good status at the time you file a claim for damaged or lost items.
What is the FBA Inventory Reimbursement Policy for Shipment to Amazon?
If one or more of your packages are missing or damaged when you ship them to an Amazon warehouse, here’s Amazon’s reimbursement policy for Shipment to Amazon claims.
Before you submit a claim, make sure that your shipping plan tallies with the number of items and with the contents of the shipment. You also need to check if you haven’t been reimbursed for it before.
Once you confirm that you are eligible for investigation, you can now file a claim. However, make sure that it is within the claim window. The claim window for shipment to Amazon claim is no later than nine months from the date the shipment delivery to Amazon FC or a third-party facility has been verified. If it is past the allowed window, you are no longer eligible for reimbursement.
How to Create a Case?
To check if you have items that were lost or damaged during transit going to an Amazon FC, you can go to Inventory, then Manage FBA Shipments.
You can sort or filter it by created dates and search for closed or choose the closed one and sort it from new to old.
Check if there are any differences from what you shipped to what was received by Amazon. You can focus on those with bigger differences.
For example, you shipped 390 units and Amazon only received 350, so there are 40 units missing from what you originally shipped to them. You can create a case for the missing 40 units. Here’s how to do it.
- On the same shipping plan page, go to the Reconcile tab.
- Gather all the necessary documents such as Bill of Lading, Invoice, and Proof of Delivery. You will only need the Bill of Lading if you don’t have a copy of the proof of delivery.
- Once all the documents are complete, upload the required documents and send this template. This template is for your reference only but you are still responsible for ensuring that you provide the right information and additional details if necessary.
“Please investigate this full summary below.
SKU Missing, Quantity
SKU – 40
If the units are not found, please reimburse me for the above missing units.”
Once you’re done and have uploaded the necessary documents, click on Preview Request.
To get the SKU, go to Manage FBA Inventory and take the SKU for that ASIN that you shipped. So, it is best that you give Amazon the opportunity to locate the items and put them back in your stock. If they fail to find the missing units, they need to reimburse you. In my case, Amazon will reimburse you after a few days after their investigation is over.
Amazon may require other information for your claim and this includes the following:
Amazon Shipment ID – You can get this in your Shipping Queue.
Proof of Inventory Ownership – This can be a receipt from other sellers, an invoice from your supplier, or if you are the manufacturer it can be a signed packing slip. Any of the documents mentioned should have the date of purchase, quantity, and product names that match the damaged or lost items.
Tips for Successful Reimbursements
To make sure that you get your reimbursement successfully and on time here are some things to remember.
- Before filing a claim, make sure the shipment is already closed. You can’t file a claim if the shipment status is still open and check the tracking numbers if they are already delivered.
- Ensure that all necessary documents that you upload are complete.
- Check first if Amazon had opened a case before creating a new one. This is to ensure that Amazon will not think you are trying to trick them.
- When sending an invoice to Amazon, make sure to blur or cover the prices, so they don’t see the real price of the items.
- When sending units to Amazon, make sure you double-check and don’t make any mistakes. For example, you shipped 20 cartons with 15 units each, that’s 300 units in total. Make sure you mark 300 and not 320. If you make a mistake, that’s not really good because if Amazon finds out that you are lying or is making too many mistakes, they might close and suspend your account.
- Remember not to abuse the refund system and only request reimbursement if you are sure that there are missing items. You don’t want Amazon to think that you are scamming them if there are really no missing items.
- When creating a case, ensure that it is still within the claim window, so you don’t waste your time and Amazon’s.
It is easy to create a case for Shipment to Amazon Claims, but you have to be very careful when filing. If you follow their process and their FBA inventory reimbursement policy and you’re sure that there are really missing items, then you should be fine. Remember the tips above for a higher chance of a successful reimbursement and avoid making any mistakes to prevent any issues, or worse, have your account suspended by Amazon!
I’m Tomer, owner of an Amazon FBA brand with experience in e-commerce for 14 years. My passion started when I was young and I’ve been programming since age 12. When I was 14, I opened my 1st online business which was a hosting company. At 16, I left school to pursue my dreams full time by working at a startup company until now where I have experience in e-commerce and marketing.In addition to my own success on Amazon, I also teach other sellers how to succeed on this platform through my website and Youtube channel Sourcing Monster, where I share videos about sourcing products from China and running successful online businesses.