you need online proof of delivery - proof of postage is only for you to claim for the loss, you need to refund the buyer in full and claim with RM. An item isn't considered lost for 15 working days though (3 weeks).
Of course you're still responsible. Why would you think otherwise. Ebay will certainly find in the buyer's favour. So taking that attitude (I'm sure you wouldn't) will only land you with negative feedback.
Perhaps I'm projecting. I had a similar experience with a case I've just opened, details eerily similar to the above (item posted on 4th, allegedly), seller claiming no responsibility as has proof of posting and it's left their hands, and offered photo. But my seller has still not refunded and instead abused the positive feedback system, leaving a negative comment.
The chap at the post office told me that the best thing to do is to pay extra and make sure you get a signature upon the buyer receiving it...just in case someone was not telling the truth about having received the item. Im guessing though that if the item is not received then and not signed for and not returned to me then I am still responsible for issuing a refund. Is this correct please? Thanks.
I had the same thing and to be honest, I just assumed my proof of postage was enough to take it out of my hands. I trusted royal mail to deliver it, not loose it. But eBay sided with the buyer, money got too out of my PayPal account, so I lost the item, the money I was paid and he postage. I did claim off royal mail tho, not expecting to get anything. I did include copies of the eBay page showing sold amount, a copy of the message off eBay saying the end result, I think that's was about it. Took about. 2 week but they reimbursed me.
And re the refund if a signed for item is not delivered, yes I expect ŷou would still have to refund, but would also expect a no questions asked refund from royal mail. Can't they track it when it's signed forZ. Or is that a different service altogether?
signed for is only any use if the postie bothers to get a signature. I had 2 items today where he didn't get my signature. I could easily claim not received and get a full refund (I wouldn't) - but many folk would. The actual percentage of items which goes missing is very low indeed. But without online proof of delivery you will never know if your buyer is a liar or not.
Proof of posting doesn't mean it's out of your hands (just as from any online shop). Proof of delivery is safer.
Ebay will always, quite rightly, side with the buyer on matters of non receipt. I find it better to suck it up, apologise for any inconvenience, refund, then claim from Royal Mail. I think you can also get a strike if buyer needs to escalate after the eight day period and still hasn't received a refund or no solution agreed upon.