You open your credit card statement and recoil in horror as you see an unfamiliar charge on your bill. That isn’t good. However, that time you purchased something online, and it never came. Or the item was not what it was advertised to be.
There are several situations where you may have to dispute a charge on your credit card. When that happens, it’s a good idea to know how to deal with credit card companies. Here’s a look at how you can dispute a credit card charge.
Types of charges to dispute
The first thing you need to do is see what kind of charges can be disputed. Here is an overall look at the three major types of charges that you will be able to dispute.
- Fraudulent charge
- Billing error
- Bad service or service not delivered
A fraudulent charge is pretty straightforward. This is a charge on your credit card that you did not authorize.
A fraudulent charge can arise from several situations. For instance, your credit card may have been stolen, and someone could secure a purchase on your card. Perhaps your credit card information was stolen online.
Also, you can experience a fraudulent charge from a company. No matter how the fraudulent charge was placed on your card, it can be disputed.
It is recommended that you file a police report if you believe that you have been the victim of a stolen credit card. While this is not required, you can help law enforcement stop credit card thieves from victimizing other credit cardholders.
With a fraudulent charge, there is typically no time limit for you to dispute the charge. However, the faster that you dispute the charge, the better.
A billing error is another charge that can be disputed. Usually, credit card companies are really good at making sure that your bills are accurate. However, there are times when errors may show up. In these cases, you will be able to dispute the charge.
Here are some situations where you may encounter a billing error on your account:
- Charges that have the wrong amount
- Charges that were placed on the wrong date
- The credit card company did not credit a payment to your account
- The credit card company falsely charged you a late fee
- The credit card company falsely charged you a fee for a service that you did not use
- Other math errors
Most credit card companies will give you up to dispute a billing error on your credit card. Therefore, you should carefully check your credit card statement each month to ensure that it is accurate.
You have up to 60 days to send in your dispute in writing. In turn, the credit card company has up to 30 days to give you a written response.
Bad Service or Services Not Delivered
Yes, there are cases where you can dispute a charge due to bad service and service that was not delivered. Usually, it will be easier to dispute a charge for a product or service that was not delivered.
However, it may be a challenge to dispute a charge for bad service. Therefore, when you attempt to dispute a charge for bad service, you will need an ample amount of evidence to back up your case.
Note that even if the company says that their product or service is non-refundable, you can still dispute the charge. Just make sure that you have documentation that can state why the charge should be reversed.
Most credit card companies give you up to 60 days to dispute a charge due to bad service or services not delivered. Therefore, be sure to dispute the charge as early as you believe that you have a reason to dispute the charge.
Charges that You Can’t Dispute
Now that you are familiar with charges that you can dispute, let’s take a look at a couple of types of charges that you will not be able to dispute:
- Charges from buyer’s remorse
- Unhappy with purchase from an authorized user
Charges from buyer’s remorse
Perhaps you feel bad about paying $400 for that pair of alligator shoes. Sorry, a charge like this can not be disputed. If you ever feel that you may make a purchase that you won’t like, be sure to take some time to consider if you really need that product or service.
Unhappy with purchase from an authorized user
So your adult son just bought $300 worth of Pokemon cards on your credit card. That may not make you happy. However, if your son is an authorized user, you will not dispute the charge.
How to Contact a Major Credit Card Company in Order to File a Dispute
Just about every credit card company has a simple way to contact them to dispute a credit card charge.
Getting Disputed Charges Off Your Credit Card
Be sure to check your credit card companies website to see where you can either mail or e-mail your dispute. If you have an online account with your credit card company, then there should be a section where you can dispute a charge.
Zero-Dollar Liability Policies
Most credit card companies have what is known as a zero-dollar liability policy. That means that if your credit card is stolen or fraudulent charges are on your credit card, you are not liable for those charges.
Be sure to check your credit card policy to ensure that you have a zero-dollar liability policy on your card.
Chargebacks versus a refund
When your dispute is resolved in your favour, you may either receive a chargeback or a refund. A chargeback is when the credit card reverses the charge on your card.
A refund is when a credit card company pays you back for the money you already paid to cover the fraudulent charge.
Getting your disputed resolved
Dealing with credit card companies does not have to be difficult when it comes to resolving a dispute.
Be sure to have all the information that you need and be persistent. You’ll be surprised by how easy it can be to resolve your credit card dispute.
Disputing a charge and your credit score
You may be wondering if disputing a charge can hurt your credit score. The answer is that disputing any charge on any credit card will not adversely affect your credit score.