Do credit card dispute always rule in customer's favor?

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AndroAsc
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Do credit card dispute always rule in customer's favor?

Post by AndroAsc »

I'm having an ongoing dispute with one of my credit card transactions.

I purchased an item from an online seller (Amazon marketplace seller) but never received it. Filed a dispute with my credit card issuer (Citicards), and after 60 days they reversed my credit and charged me for the item, which I still have not received. Apparently, the merchant provided USPS delivery confirmation, but when I called USPS they could not confirm the time of delivery or the person who they delivered to (there was no signature).

I'm really pissed with the level of due diligence Citicards has done and/or the level of service provided by USPS. Since the merchant has delivery confirmation from USPS, but I have still not received the product what can I do? I reopened the dispute telling them that I didn't receive it and USPS could not provide a signature. I feel that my case is quite weak here, so will the credit card company rule in the customer's favor in such ambiguous situations? Citicards tells me that after this round, it will go to some Visa dispute arbitrator to make a final decision. What other recourse do I have if it is not ruled in my favor?

Finally, is this typical behavior from credit card issuers? Or is it only because it is Citibank and Visa, and I will get better experience with AMEX? What happened to all those fraud protection and stuff like that? Isn't the credit card issuer supposed to be on MY side?!?!
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oneleaf
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Post by oneleaf »

http://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/ ... eId=537868

Amazon's A-Z guarantee will cover purchases from Amazon Sellers, not just Amazon themselves. I would not spend too much time on this anymore. If Citicard does not come through promptly, then file a claim with Amazon.
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SSSS
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Post by SSSS »

Amazon A-Z is reliable. I've dealt with it both as a buyer and a seller. It's definitely possible for a lost package to show "delivered" on the USPS delivery confirmation (theft from mailbox, theft by mail carrier, etc). In such cases, Amazon covers the loss as long as it doesn't happen unrealistically often with the same seller or same buyer.

Regarding your more general question about whether credit card companies will accept or reject chargebacks, it depends. If there was physical shipment of merchandise, then they may reject the chargeback if there's proof of delivery. On the other hand, if it's something intangible like a subscription to an adult website, they will always honor the chargeback, because there's no way for the merchant to prove they "delivered" what was "promised" (although you may find yourself blacklisted from joining such websites in the future).
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AndroAsc
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Post by AndroAsc »

SSSS wrote:Amazon A-Z is reliable. I've dealt with it both as a buyer and a seller. It's definitely possible for a lost package to show "delivered" on the USPS delivery confirmation (theft from mailbox, theft by mail carrier, etc). In such cases, Amazon covers the loss as long as it doesn't happen unrealistically often with the same seller or same buyer.

Regarding your more general question about whether credit card companies will accept or reject chargebacks, it depends. If there was physical shipment of merchandise, then they may reject the chargeback if there's proof of delivery. On the other hand, if it's something intangible like a subscription to an adult website, they will always honor the chargeback, because there's no way for the merchant to prove they "delivered" what was "promised" (although you may find yourself blacklisted from joining such websites in the future).
Urgh, Amazon A-Z says that they will not do anything if I file a chargeback with my credit card issuers which I did. I thought that my credit card issuer would be more reasonable that Amazon A-Z...

Is there any time limit to file a Amazon A-Z chargeback? It has been 3 months since I placed the order! Nevermind, it seems that it doesn't matter. Amazon knows that I filed a chargeback with Citicards and I can't do it through Amazon A-Z.
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SSSS
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Post by SSSS »

AndroAsc wrote:Is there any time limit to file a Amazon A-Z chargeback? It has been 3 months since I placed the order! Nevermind, it seems that it doesn't matter. Amazon knows that I filed a chargeback with Citicards and I can't do it through Amazon A-Z.
You can still try. For a lost item you have to wait until at least 30 days after (or 3 days after the maximum estimated delivery date, whichever comes first), then after that you have 60 days to file. But you can always try & see what happens. They may be generous in the name of customer service.
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AndroAsc
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Post by AndroAsc »

Well back to the original topic, does anyone know how Visa typically settle these kind of dispute cases?
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beyou
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Post by beyou »

I have found Amex is very customer friendly on this topic,
a primary reason I use them for almost any business that takes Amex.
I even wrote to a major retail chain to complain that they do not take Amex and therefore they will not get my business until they do (which happened after that point).

I have a Citicard but fortunately never had to file a claim.

Did file a claim with other major Visa bank, and was satisfied, but I have
heard Citibank is amongst the worst.
Recovered day trader.
TJSI
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Post by TJSI »

If the issue continues to be disputed it will then go to arbitration and settled by Mastercard or Visa based upon the evidence presented. Note there is a stiff cost to this arbitration (I believe $5,000) so often one of the parties drops out. Loser pays. I have never seen any statistics on the results of arbitration but I expect that the card associations try to make an honest decision based on the evidence presented. Note that the other party to the arbitration is the Merchant Bank. Citibank would be the other party. If you have a written statement from UPS that they have no signature and no driver name, you probably are in good shape.
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AndroAsc
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Post by AndroAsc »

TJSI wrote:If the issue continues to be disputed it will then go to arbitration and settled by Mastercard or Visa based upon the evidence presented. Note there is a stiff cost to this arbitration (I believe $5,000) so often one of the parties drops out. Loser pays. I have never seen any statistics on the results of arbitration but I expect that the card associations try to make an honest decision based on the evidence presented. Note that the other party to the arbitration is the Merchant Bank. Citibank would be the other party. If you have a written statement from UPS that they have no signature and no driver name, you probably are in good shape.
Loser pays $5k??? So if I lose the case I have to pay $5k or will the card issuer (bank) cover that fee?
paulsiu
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Post by paulsiu »

Delivery confirmation from USPS is not the same as signature confirmation. A delivery confirmation has no signature and only say that the package has arrived at your zip code.

http://reviews.ebay.com/USPS-DELIVERY-C ... 0000086945

Have you check with the post office to see if they just misplace your package and is sitting somewhere in the back? I had this happen once.

Paul
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Cosmo
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Post by Cosmo »

blevine wrote:I have found Amex is very customer friendly on this topic,
a primary reason I use them for almost any business that takes Amex.
I even wrote to a major retail chain to complain that they do not take Amex and therefore they will not get my business until they do (which happened after that point).

I have a Citicard but fortunately never had to file a claim.

Did file a claim with other major Visa bank, and was satisfied, but I have
heard Citibank is amongst the worst.
I have AMEX as well and have disputed two charges over the last few years; both of which were under $50. Not sure if it was because of the dollar amount, but they gave us a credit, no questions asked. I don't think they even investigated. They probably consider myself a good customer since I charge 3-5K on it. I do not have any experience with Visa and it is unclear how AMEX would have handled it if the charge was more like $1,000 or something.
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og15F1
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Post by og15F1 »

The only dispute I can recall with was AMEX. A small gym I signed up for went out of business 2 or 3 months after I signed up for a one year membership. AMEX filed it under "merchandise not received", did the investigation, and after a month or so returned my initiation fee.
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Quidnam
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Post by Quidnam »

I would echo the experiences of others here with Amex.

About a year ago I had an unfortunate experience with a retailer that I suspect was selling substandard / counterfeit items as genuine. When I returned with a new, unworn jacket I had purchased for a few hundred dollars one day prior, the guy in the store suddenly became dodgy, cited a non-existent (or at least unposted) "no returns" policy, and refused to discuss the matter any further.

All it took at that point was a call to Amex, and they immediately credited my account for the full amount of the purchase. I believe the credit may have been provisional for a few weeks as they "investigated" (probably meaning they at least attempted to contact the store before initiating a chargeback), but it required no further involvement from me. Afterwards, they went so far as to have one of their managers send a handwritten note thanking me for being a customer.

Honestly, it's refreshing enough just to have a company in this position not automatically treat you like a criminal -- which seems to be a presumption that is made all too routinely elsewhere.

Not only has Amex demonstrated that it is capable of forming reasonable assumptions about the level of responsibility and trustworthiness of its customers, they really do go above and beyond to provide peace of mind when it is needed.

(As for the jacket, I kept it in the closet before finally donating to charity as $0 value a couple of months ago. Never heard a word from the store.)
TJSI
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Post by TJSI »

AndroAsc,

Sorry to add to the confusion. The fees that Mastercard or Visa charge for arbritation are paid by the banks not the consumer or merchant. However, there is also likely a fee that Citibank would charge you if they went to arbitration and lost--probably like $50--$200. It would be listed in the small print of your cardholder agreement.

That said, you case is probably never going to arbitration. There are billions of transaction and hundred of thousands of disputes. The system is set up to resolve disputes without arbitration. Put everything in writing to your bank including that you contacted Amazon to resolve the issue. If Amazon can't produce a signed POD, the issue will be settled by the banks in your favor. This is a very common problem. But you need to put all facts in writing to your bank.
dwoten
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Post by dwoten »

I guess the short answer to the question in the subject is, apparently not. However as someone who has done a chargeback for faulty goods and has had someone do them against me for an item that I foolishly did not require signature confirmation, in my experience the answer is overwhelmingly in favor of the purchaser.

Hopefully you can get things worked out.
grberry
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Post by grberry »

The credit card networks have processes to discuss and get evidence from both sides. Each credit card network has at least one set of dispute handling rules (a couple years ago, Visa was cutting back from eight different sets of rules to just three - if I recall correctly for credit cards issued in Europe, credit cards issued anywhere else, and for debit cards). They update these rules twice a year. Traditionally, they are published on paper, and the book has been described to me as being about 1-2 inches thick...

The rules are neither simple nor static.
natureexplorer
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Post by natureexplorer »

Last year I disputed a credit card charge with FIA. I have a strong case.

After I called FIA they immediately reversed the charge. Their dispute department has limited business hours.

Then some time later, the charge reappeared. I called again and this time they told me I cannot dispute the same item twice with them and that it was ruled in favor of the merchant. They said I have to talk to another department with even more that has limited service hours. I could however also send a fax or letter.

I then sent a fax to that FIA department.

Then I received a letter that they will credit me for the amount.

The credit however never appeared.
firewynd
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Post by firewynd »

I have a citicard and have used it for a few years.

Every time I've ever had to seek a refund - I always got it immediately. But they were all low $ cost items. Less than $50. Not sure if that made a difference.
scrabbler1
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Post by scrabbler1 »

I recall one disputed charge about 10 years ago when an internet service provider charged me its monthly fee even though I had already canceled their service a week or two earlier, as soon as they told me they were raising their price threefold.

I had all the paperwork including a dated email from me canceling the service so it was pretty quick and straightforward to get the charge reversed.
paulsiu
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Post by paulsiu »

I disputed numerous things over the years. Each time the credit card has ruled in my favorite. This included:

1. A computer company that sold me an item on their website that came with software. When it arrived, it didn't include the software on the website. This was an honest mistake since they didn't update their website. However, they told me that they wouldn't give me a refund because "items may not be same as advertise, etc". I took a snapshot of the screen and sent it to the credit card as proof and got my money back.

2. Someone broke into my account and ordered a bunch of items. The charges were also removed.

3. One item I found that that I cannot win is if I book items through travel websites hostel.com. I booked a hostel in Europe, which went through, but was told later that that it was overbooked. I tried to get a refund, but the credit card said for some reason I cannot. However, the vendor was required to at least give me a hostel somewhere nearby (which frankly was pretty terrible).

Paul
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