Visa Resolve Online (VROL) Explained
Table of Contents
- What Is the Visa Claims Resolution Initiative?
- What Is Visa Resolve Online?
- Why Was VROL Created?
- What Transaction Information Does VROL Require?
- How Does VROL Help With Friendly Fraud?
- Can a Cardholder Reverse a Purchase With a Visa Card?
- How Long Can a Cardholder File a Chargeback With Visa?
- What Is VCR Allocation?
Chargebacks are on the rise. Even aside from the spike in chargebacks at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of customers disputing chargebacks with their banks has been increasing steadily over the past decade. Many of these chargebacks are illegitimate, the result of customer confusion or intentional abuse of the chargeback process.
Visa has made a variety of changes in recent years to try to address these issues. One of the most significant is the introduction of Visa Resolve Online, or VROL. VROL is an online platform intended to facilitate dispute resolution. Through VROL, merchants can receive notification of inquiries and disputes as soon as they occur and can respond more quickly and easily.
VROL was expanded as part of the Visa Claims Resolution initiative, which aims to significantly reduce both the time it takes to resolve a dispute and the number of fraudulent disputes that occur. Let's take a look at Visa Claims Resolution and VROL, what merchants need to know about them, and how they can be used to improve chargeback management.
Those looking for specific information on how to use Visa Resolve Online can take a look at Visa's online training module for the platform.
Before discussing Visa Resolve Online, it’s best to begin with the Visa Claims Resolution initiative to have a better understanding of this newer, more efficient dispute resolution system.
Visa has four dispute categories: Fraud, authorization, processing errors, and cardholder disputes. While disputes can't be avoided completely, steps can be taken to reduce them.
What Is the Visa Claims Resolution Initiative?
Formerly, disputes could take up to 46 days to resolve, with more contentious ones often taking 100 days or more. Visa's goal is to reduce that time to 31 days or less. That way disputes are settled within one billing cycle, which greatly benefits all parties involved.
Visa Claims Resolution attempts to weed out invalid disputes and those that don’t meet Visa’s criteria for the selected dispute category. This means merchants won't have to spend so much time researching the validity of those claims. The program also provides a better customer experience due to the efficiency of dispute resolution.
In addition to reducing processing times and dispute volume, VCR also promotes proactive dispute resolution for merchants via the Visa Merchant Purchase Inquiry (VMPI) program, which allows merchants to communicate transaction information to banks in real time when a customer wants to dispute a charge.
Note that VMPI has since been rebranded as Order Insight, taking on the name of the similar service offered by Verifi after Visa acquired the company.
Since the start of the Visa Claims Resolution initiative, all Visa card disputes are resolved via either the Allocation workflow or the Collaboration workflow.
The Allocation workflow is an automated process for handling fraud and authorization related disputes. VROL will evaluate the information presented and issue an automatic decision according to Visa's rules and policies on whether liability for the chargeback should be assigned to the merchant or to the issuing bank. If liability is assigned to the merchant, they can only fight the chargeback if they're willing to immediately take the case to pre-arbitration.
The Collaboration workflow is the process for handling disputes labeled as processing errors or consumer disputes. The only major change to this process was that the time limit for merchants to respond was reduced from 45 to 30 days.
In the Collaboration workflow, liability is assigned to the merchant by default. However, the merchant can fight the chargeback by submitting evidence to the issuing bank in representment. The issuing bank will evaluate this evidence to determine whether or not the chargeback should be reversed.
What Is Visa Resolve Online?
VROL helps determine whether disputes are valid or invalid using the data it has gathered. It then compares certain information—namely transaction data, dispute category, and the complainant's responses—to the VROL questionnaire.
For example, if a merchant has already taken action on a chargeback claim by crediting back a disputed charge, VROL flags this claim to invalidate the dispute and prevent it from continuing.
Processors and banks are required by Visa to use VROL in the event of a dispute to respond to retrieval requests, receive or transmit documentation, or appeal initial results. Essentially, everything related to a chargeback must go through VROL.
The program also helps prevent invalid disputes by cross-checking with VisaNet to find out if there was a valid authorization and by ensuring that there is a present accurate fraud report. Before a dispute can be filed, the issuer must first request a transaction inquiry using VROL.
If the merchant in question participates in Order Insight, formerly known as the Visa Merchant Purchase Inquiry (VMPI) program, Visa will forward a request for additional transaction information to the merchant, who will provide a response according to their own policies. Merchants may respond by providing additional transaction information to help the bank make a decision about the dispute, or by issuing an immediate credit to the customer, avoiding the dispute altogether.
Why Was VROL Created?
In addition, if a customer dispute doesn’t meet certain criteria implemented by Visa, the VROL system might automatically reject that dispute.
This was intended to prevent certain common and obviously illegitimate disputes from being filed in the first place. Even if this automatic rejection is limited in scope, it came as a great relief to many merchants that Visa took any action to crack down on chargeback fraud.
With VROL, everyone involved in a cardholder dispute has a central location for the purpose of sending messages, exchanging information, and determining the validity of a dispute.
What Transaction Information Does VROL Require?
Merchants should have systems in place to gather and record detailed information on every transaction they conduct in case of a dispute. When a dispute does occur, the merchant should examine the reason code to determine what the cardholder's claim is.
Then, the merchant should look at the transaction information they have recorded and decide if that information is sufficient to disprove the cardholder's claim. If so, the merchant should submit a dispute response to the issuer containing all relevant information and evidence.
Electronic POS terminal receipts should contain the following information: Merchant name and location, transaction date, merchant location code, description of goods or services, suppressed account number or token, expiration date, card payment brand, transaction amount and currency symbol, authorization code, space for cardholder signature, and refund/return policy.
For card-absent merchants, here are the Visa requirements for substitute transaction receipts: Merchant name and location, transaction date, merchant online address, payment method used and suppressed account number, transaction type, authorization code, copy of invoice, service/product delivery, product usage records, customer service notes, and refund/return policy.
How Does VROL Help With Friendly Fraud?
In addition, VROL's facilitation of the VMPI program can prevent friendly fraud by providing banks with more detailed transaction information, helping confused customers recognize charges they wanted to dispute, and potentially scaring off fraudsters who intended to lie about the transaction.
The Visa Claims Resolution initiative may also help prevent friendly fraud in the long term by helping Visa keep an eye on the dispute system as a whole.
With this initiative, an index is applied to Visa merchants, banks, and cardholders to help trace and monitor abuses on either side.
What does this do to help with friendly fraud? First, it can give Visa an indication of any problem areas where the process could be improved. Furthermore, it helps Visa see how disputes play out over the network so that it can identify places where one party or another is gaming the system or being taken advantage of. VROL isn't foolproof, so Visa is constantly re-calibrating its system to ensure that it is fair to all parties involved.
Overall, VROL and the Visa Claims Resolution initiative make dispute processing more streamlined, cutting processing time significantly and promoting the proactive involvement of merchants in dispute resolution. It's also a useful tool to help mitigate instances of fraud by providing a mechanism for identifying abuse.