by Step_On Investigator
Investigator

Ownership of used iPhone

Hi all.

I'm the proud owner of a great condition used iPhone.

The phone was bought from eBay from a verified seller with faultless feedback and a long account history.

1. The phone is SIM locked to EE and the contract started less than 6 months ago the phone is still EE's property. Is this legal and does this law superceed Consumer Rights Act 2015?

 

2. Checkmend searches show the phone as not reported stolen or lost with no other issues like bad payment.

 

EE say after 6 months of the contract starting the phone can be unlocked but the IMEI can be used to blacklist the phone for as long as the contract runs - is this correct?

 

Apple support have said that if I sign in with my apple ID say from today's  date and the phone is reported  stolen or lost after that time this is proof that I am the owner and the phone cannot be blacklisted on these grounds.

 

How can I avoid the above issues legally?

 

 

10 REPLIES 10
by Grand Master
Grand Master

Re: Ownership of used iPhone

@Step_On: Basically you can't  You are at the whim of the seller and original owner.

 

  1. It's contract law. The CRA does not concern itself with vesting the rights of property with anyone  
  2. The original owner could at any time report it stolen and get it blacklisted  This is a common fraud with second hand phones. 
  3. You can't just become owner while EE owns it and you cannot stop it being blacklisted by EE. 
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by Step_On Investigator
Investigator

Re: Ownership of used iPhone

Thanks for your reply.

 

There is a massive used phone market where is line drawn on ownership? Does this mean all phones no matter what can be blacklisted.

 

How can a trader prove that a used phone is clean for want of a better term. Say like a refurbished phone that is issued from an insurance company or carrier?

 

Is it only when the phone is under contract?

 

Even if a bill of sale exists and the phone has been registered with a new owner (in this case with Apple ID) an unlocked phone can be claimed as lost or stolen? Seems strange.

 

I can start a refund claim with eBay but has the dealer broken the law? Should this be more publicly available as information that all second hand phones can be blacklisted.

 

by Brilliant Contributor
Brilliant Contributor

Re: Ownership of used iPhone

There is a huge used phone market but this is the risk they take.

 

The original owner could report it stolen to get money or a new phone from insurance.

 

Nothing the buyer of the said used phone can do.  It's a risk and a reason I'd personally never buy a used phone. 


BrendonH (Android Expert) Samsung Galaxy S10+ (Pie 9.0)
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by Brilliant Contributor
Brilliant Contributor

Re: Ownership of used iPhone

The dealer hasn't broken the law. Just his contract and EE could request they pay the full amount of the contract upfront for this.

 

He hasn't commited fraud either until they report lost or stolen which he may not do obviously.


BrendonH (Android Expert) Samsung Galaxy S10+ (Pie 9.0)
If I have helped please click the STAR/SOLUTION buttons below
by Grand Master
Grand Master

Re: Ownership of used iPhone

@Step_On  Putting your Apple ID on the device doesn’t mean it will not be blacklisted if reported lost/stolen by the original owner.   If the original owner was to do this and claim on insurance for a new device then the original owner will have gained money from yourself by the means of fraud. At this point you could go to the police to report it.   Unfortunately I’ve ever known of one case where the person who did this was actually done for fraud and that was a number of year ago now.  

by Grand Master
Grand Master

Re: Ownership of used iPhone

Registering with an Apple ID has nowt to do with the ownership chain of the physical item. That follows just like the selling & buying of any other object.

 

Had you bought it while it was under 6 months old you would still not be the owner. He had no right to sell it by virtue of his contract with EE.

 

If the original owner did attempt fraud by reporting it lost or stolen he's not gonna admit that he sold it to you (or your seller). Bang goes that ownership chain.

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If you think I helped please feel free to hit the "Star" button below.

To phone EE: The local rate landline number +44 207 362 0200 or Freephone +44 800 079 8586 - Option 1 for Mobiles; Option 2 for 4G WiFi; Option 3 for Home Broadband & EE TV.

ISPs: 1999: Freeserve 48K Dial-Up => 2005: Wanadoo 1 Meg BB => 2007: Orange 2 Meg BB => 2008: Orange 8 Meg LLU => 2010: Orange 16 Meg LLU => 2011: Orange 20 Meg WBC => 2014: EE 20 Meg WBC
by Step_On Investigator
Investigator

Re: Ownership of used iPhone

Thanks for your replies. It's as bad as I thought.

 

The overriding question though is why is there not something written in law about this to protect the seller and buyer. A benchmark where all criteria is to be met and if not the phone cannot be sold.

 

 

 

 

by Grand Master
Grand Master

Re: Ownership of used iPhone

Like the DVLA Change of Ownership process? Smiley Wink What about all the other types of goods in the world? Who's gonna administer it? A DVLA for all seasons?

__________________________________________________________________________________________
If you think I helped please feel free to hit the "Star" button below.

To phone EE: The local rate landline number +44 207 362 0200 or Freephone +44 800 079 8586 - Option 1 for Mobiles; Option 2 for 4G WiFi; Option 3 for Home Broadband & EE TV.

ISPs: 1999: Freeserve 48K Dial-Up => 2005: Wanadoo 1 Meg BB => 2007: Orange 2 Meg BB => 2008: Orange 8 Meg LLU => 2010: Orange 16 Meg LLU => 2011: Orange 20 Meg WBC => 2014: EE 20 Meg WBC
by Step_On Investigator
Investigator

Re: Ownership of used iPhone

Further to this thought of a checklist to sell a used phone.

 

What do all the companies like Giff Gaff, mResell, Music Magpie who sell used phones do to avoid the same thing happening?

by Brilliant Contributor
Brilliant Contributor

Re: Ownership of used iPhone

They have their process and if they sell a phone that is blacklisted they have a duty to refund or replace. And have done for customers in the past if you go by people I have read about on many forums.


BrendonH (Android Expert) Samsung Galaxy S10+ (Pie 9.0)
If I have helped please click the STAR/SOLUTION buttons below
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