Credit Card Chargebacks - Situations/Action To Be Taken
April 09, 2014

Credit Card chargebacks may be possible in the following scenarios if the cardholder contacts the card issuer within 30 days of receiving a credit card statement and no later than 90 calendar days after the original transaction date:

1. SITUATION: Customer has had no contact with the merchant and thus did not authorize purchase, OR Customer has had dealings with merchant, but did not authorize purchase on credit card. The card may have been given as a reference number only. 

ACTION TO BE TAKEN: Cardholder should call his/her card issuer's customer service centre immediately and ask the card issuer to initiate an investigation of the enquiry. If the card issuer determines the transaction to be unauthorized, it will request the cardholder to send a signed letter/affidavit to that effect. The amount of the transaction may then be credited to the consumer. The consumer's card may also be blocked, and a new one issued.

2. SITUATION: Customer authorized purchase on credit card, but wrong amount appears on statement, OR Return/reversal processed as a purchase or purchase processed as a return/reversal. 

ACTION TO BE TAKEN: The cardholder should contact the merchant, identify the problem and ask for a correction. Cardholder should obtain a copy of the correcting voucher. If unsatisfied with the answers received from the merchant, the cardholder should contact the card issuer and ask the card issuer to initiate an investigation of the enquiry. If the card issuer determines the transaction to be incorrect, it will request the cardholder to send a copy of the transaction receipt (cardholder contacted merchant, difference charged is not correct, etc.). The difference may then be credited/debited to the consumer. 

3. SITUATION: Cardholder ordered goods/services, and did not receive an adequate response from the company within the defined period of time.

ACTION TO BE TAKEN: Cardholder should attempt to contact the merchant directly to determine what has happened to the order. If the customer has taken efforts to contact the merchant, but does not receive a response, the customer should immediately contact his/her card issuer to ask the card issuer to initiate an investigation. If the cardholder's claim is verified, a refund may be issued to the cardholder.

4. SITUATION: Goods received do not fit description provided by merchant. They may be of poor quality, defective, or an unacceptable substitute from the items described by the merchant.

ACTION TO BE TAKEN: Customer should contact merchant and make arrangements with merchant for return of goods/refund. Following contact with merchant, customer should return goods if desired (via registered mail), and state in writing the desire for a full refund. Retain proof that the goods were returned and be prepared to state how the goods do not conform to original specifications. If this process is unsuccessful, the cardholder should contact the card issuer and ask the card issuer to initiate an investigation of the enquiry and to refund the cardholder if appropriate. It is important to note that the cardholder should be aware of merchant refund policies.

5. SITUATION: Cardholder continues to be billed for a recurring charge after cancellation notification was given by the cardholder (eg. Health Club memberships).

ACTION TO BE TAKEN: Cardholder should contact merchant and determine why this charge is recurring. If unsuccessful, the cardholder should contact the card issuer directly and provide proof of cancellation. The card issuer will initiate an investigation of the enquiry. If the card issuer determines the transaction to be unauthorized, it will request the cardholder to send a signed letter/affidavit to that effect (cardholder contacted merchant, amount charged is not correct, etc.). The amount of the transaction may then be credited to the consumer. 

6. SITUATION: Cardholder is charged more than once for a single transaction. 

ACTION TO BE TAKEN: Cardholder should call his/her card issuer's customer service centre immediately to ask the card issuer to initiate an investigation of the enquiry. The card issuer may then refund the cardholder if appropriate.

7. SITUATION: Credit voucher was issued by the merchant and has not been processed on current or previous statements. (Please note: Credit vouchers may take up to 45 days to appear on a statement.)

ACTION TO BE TAKEN: Cardholder should ensure the credit transaction has not been processed on any previous statements. If 45 days or more have elapsed since the date of the credit voucher, the cardholder should contact the card issuer and provide a copy of the credit voucher. The card issuer will initiate an investigation of the enquiry and refund the cardholder if appropriate.