The Chargeback Gurus Guide to Chargeback Reason Codes

Payment card disputes are subject to sets of rules: both the laws of the countries they’re doing business in and the mandates of the card networks overseeing them. To be granted a chargeback, a cardholder must submit a claim that meets the guidelines for allowable disputes. Each chargeback will carry a short alphanumeric code that identifies the reason the chargeback was granted. This is the reason code, and it can be a valuable source of information to merchants. Ultimately, the reason code is the first place to look for an answer to the question, why did this chargeback happen?

To prevent chargebacks, you have to know what’s causing them. It can take a lengthy investigation to discover the true underlying causes of complicated chargeback situations, but the reason code will tell you immediately the basic outline of the claims the cardholder made to their bank when they disputed the transaction.

With reason codes, you have a way to easily categorize your chargebacks and a starting point for your research into what errors, vulnerabilities, or operational inefficiencies are leading to disputes and chargebacks.

What is a Reason Code?

The Fair Credit Billing Act of 1974 laid the foundation for the chargeback process, but it was up to the issuers and card networks to figure out how to implement the guidelines they were handed. Reason codes helped to identify and categorize all of the various chargeback allowances that the law might require.

All of the major card networks—Visa, Mastercard, American Express, and Discover—use reason codes, and while they share many identical or similar ones, they each have their own proprietary descriptions and numbering systems. To be properly fluent in reason codes, you need to familiarize yourself with the list from each of the card networks you accept.

Fortunately, we’ve got you covered. This guide provides a breakdown of all of the reason codes merchants are likely to encounter from each card network, along with more thorough description of the card networks’ occasionally cryptic descriptions, and some pointers, where appropriate, about how merchants should respond.

Keep in mind that as useful as reason codes can be, they’re not the final word on how or why a chargeback came to be. What they are is a reflection of how the bank interpreted the cardholder’s story, and there can always be deception or misunderstanding clouding things. Legitimate chargebacks and fraudulent chargebacks will come through carrying the same reason codes, and it’s up to the merchant to investigate each one and figure out which chargebacks represent opportunities for growth and improvement, and which ones should be fought with all their might.

When reason codes don’t match the real facts of the situation, you should gather the evidence that supports your case, write a compelling rebuttal letter, and use the chargeback representment process to try and get the fraudulent chargeback struck down and reversed.

There’s one other good way to counter any chargeback, no matter what the reason code, and that’s to have refunded the cardholder first. If you can submit proof that you refunded the cardholder over the matter they’re disputing, you may be able to get the chargeback reversed, saving you from the harmful consequences of a high chargeback ratio.

Visa

Visa Chargeback Reason Codes

Reason code categories have changed a lot in the last few years...

Fraud

Description

Fraudulent Multiple Transactions

Typical Causes

  1. Merchant fails to void multiple transactions of a single Credit Card account.
  2. Merchant tried to process multiple transactions fraudulently.
  3. Cardholder authorized the transaction earlier, but later denied.

Prevention Steps

  1. Merchant should void the transaction in that Customer not participate.
  2. Merchant process Credit immediately if Multiple transactions held from a single credit card account of the same product.
  3. Merchant should share all Policies with Customers and let them know about the Orders and Offers.
  4. Always request to Cardholder to sign the policies in addition to the final transaction receipt.
  5. Train employees to operate point-of-sale terminals and void transactions.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 57: Fraud

Description

Counterfeit Transaction

Typical Causes

  1. The cardholder denies authorizing or participating in the transaction that was completed with a counterfeit card in a Card Present environment.
  2. The issuer reported the transaction as counterfeit Fraud Activity through VisaNet and online authorization was obtained without transmission of the entire unaltered data on track 1 or track 2, or full-chip data. OR The cardholder denies authorizing or participating in the transaction completed with a counterfeit card in a Card Present environment and the card is a chip card (first digit of the Service Code is 2 or 6).
  3. Furthermore, either the transaction did not take place at a chip-reading device (terminal entry capability code was not 5) or, for transactions not involving a Europe Member, the transaction was chip-initiated and, if the transaction was authorized online, the acquirer did not transmit the full-chip data to Visa in the authorization request.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 62: Fraud

Description

Fraud – Card-Present Environment

Typical Causes

The cardholder did not authorize or participate in a Card Present environment transaction.

OR

A fraudulent transaction was completed in a Card Present environment using an account number for which no valid card was issued or is outstanding, and no authorization was obtained.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Airline Transaction
  • Below-Floor Limit

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 81: Fraud

Description

Fraud – Card-Absent Environment

Typical Causes

The cardholder did not authorize or participate in a transaction conducted in a Card Not Present environment.

OR

A fraudulent transaction was completed in a Card Not Present environment using an account number for which no valid card was issued or is outstanding, and no authorization was obtained.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Airline Transaction

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 83: Fraud

Description

Visa Fraud Monitoring Program

Typical Causes

Visa notified the issuer that the transaction was identified by the Visa Fraud Monitoring Program and the issuer has not successfully charged back the transaction under another reason code.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 93: Fraud

Description

EMV Liabilty Shift Counterfeit Fraud

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

The cardholder has a chip card and someone made a counterfeit copy of it. You processed a transaction with the counterfeit card on a terminal that wasn’t EMV-compliant rather than using a chip reading device that would have detected the fraud. Now, the cardholder claims the purchase was unauthorized.

Transaction Modifiers

  • EMV Liability Shift Counterfeit Fraud

Prevention Steps

  1. Only use EMV-compliant terminals.
  2. Always use the correct cardholder verification method—signature, PIN, etc.
  3. Create an electronic or manual imprint for every card-present transaction.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 10.1: Fraud

Description

EMV Liabilty Shift Non-Counterfeit Fraud

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

The cardholder has a PIN-preferring chip card, but you didn’t use a chip-reading device to process the transaction or used a chip-reading device that wasn’t PIN compliant. Now, the cardholder claims the purchase was unauthorized.

Transaction Modifiers

  • EMV Liability Shift Non-Counterfeit Fraud

Prevention Steps

  1. Only use EMV-compliant terminals.
  2. Always use the correct cardholder verification method—signature, PIN, etc.
  3. Create an electronic or manual imprint for every card-present transaction.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 10.2: Fraud

Description

Other Fraud: Card-Present Environment/Condition

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

The cardholder claims the transaction was unauthorized and it was either a key-entered or unattended transaction.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Other Fraud – Card Present Environment

Prevention Steps

  1. Use fallback options—like manually entering transaction data—as a last resort.
  2. If you do perform a key-entered transaction, make a manual imprint of the card.
  3. Make sure you differentiate between card-absent and card-present transactions during clearing by noting internet phone, or mail orders.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 10.3: Fraud

Description

Other Fraud - Card- Absent Environment

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

The cardholder claims a card-not-present transaction was unauthorized.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Other Fraud – Card Absent Environment

Prevention Steps

  1. Consider using all the tools available to you—including Visa Secure, card security code (CVV2), and Address Verification Service (AVS).
  2. Use pre-sale fraud detection service providers that can help verify the cardholder’s identity, detect potential criminal activity, and reduce the risk of accepting unauthorized transaction.
  3. Use a billing descriptor that is easily recognized by the cardholder.
  4. Always submit an authorization request, no matter the transaction amount.
  5. Make sure you differentiate between card-absent and card-present transactions during clearing by noting internet, phone, or mail orders.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 10.4: Fraud

Description

Visa Fraud Monitoring Program

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

Your business is enrolled in the Visa Fraud Monitoring Program and the issuer was allowed to dispute the fraudulent transaction.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Visa Fraud Monitoring Program

Prevention Steps

Monitor your fraud-to-transaction ratio and take necessary steps to prevent breaching thresholds established by Visa.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 10.5: Fraud

Authorization

Description

Card Recovery Bulletin or Exception File

Typical Causes

  1. The transaction was below the merchant's floor limit and the merchant did not obtain authorization.
  2. On the transaction date, the account number was listed in the Card Recovery Bulletin for the Visa Region where the merchant is located (All excluding US Domestic).

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 70: Authorization

Description

Declined Authorization

Typical Causes

An Authorization Request received a Decline or Pickup Response and the merchant completed the transaction.

OR

An Authorization Request for a magnetic stripe-read or chip-initiated transaction using a counterfeit card received a Decline Response, or a Pickup Response and a subsequent authorization was obtained by a means other than Voice Authorization. The merchant completed the transaction.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 71: Authorization

Description

No Authorization

Typical Causes

Correct and valid authorization was not obtained by the merchant.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 72: Authorization

Description

Expired Card

Typical Causes

A merchant completed a transaction with a card that expired before the transaction date and did not obtain authorization.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 73: Authorization

Description

Service Code Violation

Typical Causes

A merchant did not obtain authorization and completed a magnetic stripe-read transaction on either a Visa Electron card, a Visa card in a registered positive Authorization (X2X Service Code) account range, or in the Europe Region, a card with a service code that indicated either: the card was invalid for the transaction type or online authorization was required (All excluding US Domestic).

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 78: Authorization

Description

Card Recovery Bulletin

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

75 days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

The transaction was above your floor limit, but you didn’t request authorization. Since the authorization process wasn’t used, you didn’t realize the account number was listed in the Card Recovery Bulletin and the transaction should have been terminated.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Card Recovery Bulletin or Exception File

Prevention Steps

  1. Always send an authorization request before processing a transaction if the amount is above your floor limit.
  2. Check the Card Recovery Bulletin if the transaction is below your floor limit.
  3. If you process transactions with multiple authorizations, make sure you fully understand Visa’s rules and regulations.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 11.1: Authorization

Description

Declined Authorization

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

75 days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

You received a Decline or Pickup authorization response, but chose to complete the transaction anyway.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Declined Authorization

Prevention Steps

  1. If you receive a Decline or Pickup authorization response, either terminate the transaction or submit a second authorization request. Never proceed without authorization.
  2. If you process transactions with multiple authorizations, make sure you fully understand Visa’s rules and regulations.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 11.2: Authorization

Description

No Authorization

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

75 days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

The transaction was processed without any attempt to gain authorization, or authorization was requested after the fact or for a different amount.

Transaction Modifiers

  • No Authorization

Prevention Steps

  1. Always send an authorization request before processing a transaction if the amount is above your floor limit.
  2. If you process transactions with multiple authorizations, make sure you fully understand Visa’s rules and regulations.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 11.3: Authorization

Processing Errors

Description

Late Presentment

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

The merchant does not process a transaction in a timely manner; the account was no longer in good standing at the time of processing.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Late Presentment

Prevention Steps

Make sure you send completed transactions to your payment processor within the timeframe specified in your merchant agreement. A good practice is to submit transactions on the day of the sale or as soon as possible.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 12.1: Processing Errors

Description

Incorrect Transaction Code

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

The merchant processed a debit instead of a credit, processed a credit instead of processing a reversal, or in some other way processed a transaction that differed from the obtained authorization.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Incorrect Transaction Code

Prevention Steps

Hold regular staff training sessions to ensure everyone on your team knows how to correctly process transactions, refunds, and adjustments.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 12.2: Processing Errors

Description

Incorrect Currency

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

The transaction currency differs from the currency transmitted through Visa; the cardholder was not advised or did not agree that Dynamic Currency Conversion (DCC) would occur.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Incorrect Currency

Prevention Steps

  1. Don’t automatically apply Dynamic Currency Conversion (DCC) to to transactions. Give customers the option to select the service if they are interested, but don’t require its use.
  2. Have systems in place to manage multiple currencies. Make sure staff are trained on procedures.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 12.3: Processing Errors

Description

Incorrect Account Number

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

The transaction was processed to an incorrect account number; the adjustment was processed more than 45 days from transaction date; an adjustment was posted to a "closed" or "non-sufficient funds" account more than 10 days after the transaction date; an adjustment was processed more than once for the same transaction; the cardholder disputes the validity of the adjustment.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Incorrect Transaction Account Number

Prevention Steps

  1. Always request authorization before completing a transaction.
  2. If an authorization request is denied, stop the transaction and ask for an alternate form of payment.
  3. Always swipe or dip a card—only use fall-back options in emergency situations.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 12.4: Processing Errors

Description

Incorrect Amount

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

The cardholder claims the transaction amount is incorrect. - An error was made entering numbers manually; the amount of the transaction was changed without the cardholder's consent.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Incorrect Transaction Amount

Prevention Steps

  1. Unless authorized, never change the amount of a completed transaction without the cardholder’s consent.
  2. Use caution when entering handwritten transaction information.
  3. Always swipe or dip a card—only use fall-back options in emergency situations.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 12.5: Processing Errors

Description

Duplicate Processing/Paid By Other Means

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

The merchant tries to submit multiple batches at one time; the transaction has multiple receipts; the transaction is duplicated in the merchant's system; the transaction was processed but the cardholder paid for the same merchandise or service by other means.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Duplicate Processing or Paid by Other Means

Prevention Steps

  1. If you notice a duplicate transaction, issue a credit as soon as possible.
  2. Double check all transaction receipts before they are deposited.
  3. Only send batches one time.
  4. If the customer wants to change to a different form of payment after initially offering the payment card, be sure to void the charge.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 12.6: Processing Errors

Description

Invalid Data

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

75 days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

The merchant submits an authorization request containing an incorrect transaction date, MCC, merchant or transaction type indicator, country or state code, or other required field.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Invalid Data

Prevention Steps

  1. Supply all necessary information with each authorization request, including transaction date, MCC, transaction type indicator, country code, and state code.
  2. Make sure your correct MCC is used in the authorization request and it matches what will be sent with transaction clearing.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 12.7: Processing Errors

Card Member Disputes

Inquiry/Miscellaneous

Not Classified

Expired

Services

Dispute Compliance

Point-of-Interaction Error

Description

Late Presentment

Typical Causes

The transaction was not processed within the required time limit and the account number was not in good standing on the chargeback processing date.

OR

The transaction date is more than 180 calendar days before the processing date.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 74: Point-of-Interaction Error

Description

Incorrect Currency or Transaction Code

Typical Causes

This chargeback involves the use of an incorrect currency or transaction code.

Transaction Modifiers

  • DCC Selected by Merchant
  • DCC Unknown/Refused
  • Incorrect Transaction Code

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 76: Point-of-Interaction Error

Description

Non-Matching Account Number

Typical Causes

The merchant or the acquirer processed a transaction that did not receive an authorization and used an account number that does not match any account number on the issuer's master file.

OR

The originating member processed an original credit transaction using an account number that does not match any account number on the issuer's master file.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 77: Point-of-Interaction Error

Description

Incorrect Transaction Amount or Account Number

Typical Causes

The acquirer processed an adjustment of an ATM cash disbursement or a PIN-authenticated Visa Debit transaction and one of the following; the adjustment contains either: an incorrect account number or a non-matching account number, the adjustment posted to a "closed" or "non-sufficient funds" account and the adjustment was processed more than 10 days after the transaction date, the adjustment was processed more than 45 days from transaction date, an adjustment was processed more than once for the same transaction, or the cardholder disputes the validity of the adjustment because of the adjustment amount or because the original transaction was cancelled or reversed (US Domestic).

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 80: Point-of-Interaction Error

Description

Duplicate Processing

Typical Causes

A single transaction was processed more than once using the same account number.

Transaction Modifiers

  • ATM Transaction
  • Telephone Service Transaction – Unattended Cardholder-Activated Terminal

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 82: Point-of-Interaction Error

Description

Paid by Other Means

Typical Causes

The cardholder paid for the same merchandise or service by other means.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 86: Point-of-Interaction Error

Cardholder Disputes

Consumer Disputes

Description

Services Not Provided or Merchandise Not Received

Typical Causes

The cardholder participated in the transaction, but the cardholder or an authorized person did not receive the goods or services because the merchant was unwilling or unable to provide the goods or services.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Airline Transaction

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 30: Consumer Disputes

Description

Cancelled Recurring Transaction

Typical Causes

The cardholder withdrew permission to charge the account for a recurring transaction or, in the Europe Region, an installment transaction (All Regions)

OR

The acquirer or merchant received notification that the cardholder's account was closed or, in the Europe Region, facilities were withdrawn or the cardholder was deceased, before the transaction was processed (All Regions).

OR

The transaction amount was not within the range of preauthorized amounts by the cardholder, or the merchant had agreed to notify the cardholder before processing each recurring transaction, and the merchant either: did not notify the cardholder in writing at least 10 calendar days before the transaction date, or notified the cardholder at least 10 calendar days before the transaction date but the cardholder did not consent to the charge (US/Domestic Only).

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 41: Consumer Disputes

Description

Not as Described or Defective Merchandise

Typical Causes

Either the goods or services did not match what was described on the transaction receipt or other documentation presented at the time of purchase.

OR

The merchandise received by the cardholder was damaged or defective (All excluding France Domestic).

OR

The cardholder disputes the quality of the goods or services (All excluding France Domestic).

Transaction Modifiers

  • Counterfeit Merchandise
  • Misrepresented Terms of Sale
  • Not as Described

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 53: Consumer Disputes

Description

Transaction Not Recognized

Typical Causes

The cardholder does not recognize the transaction and additional information beyond the data required in the clearing record is needed to assist the cardholder in identifying the transaction.

Prevention Steps

**NOTE: As of April 13, 2018, Visa has officially retired chargeback reason code 75. The post below contains legacy information pertaining to the formerly-common Visa chargeback reason code 75

  1. Visa chargeback reason code 75 is filed as an honest mistake. In these situations, a merchant’s billing descriptor is simply not recognized by the customer. Thus, the easiest way to prevent chargeback reason code 75 from being filed is to use a billing descriptor that is easily recognizable.
  2. Carefully consider the use of soft billing descriptors versus hard descriptors. A hard descriptor will be the same on all card statements, regardless of the items sold. A soft billing descriptor will adapt to better reflect the purchase (including the exact items purchased, for example).
  3. Being consistent with the business’s name in all marketing materials, receipts, invoices, social media accounts, and emails can also reduce the likelihood that customers will file a reason code 75 chargeback.
  4. Also, be sure to communicate regularly with customers. Keep the business fresh in their minds. This is especially important if the cardholder is involved in recurring payments. 

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 75: Consumer Disputes

Description

Credit Not Processed

Typical Causes

The cardholder received a credit or voided transaction receipt that was not processed (Europe and Interregional including Europe). OR The cardholder cancelled or returned merchandise, cancelled services, cancelled a timeshare transaction, or cancelled a Guaranteed Reservation and the merchant did not process a credit or voided transaction receipt. And, either the merchant did not properly disclose or did disclose, but did not apply, a limited return or cancellation policy at the time of the transaction, or in the Europe Region, the merchandise or services relate to an off-premises, distance selling contract (as set out in the EU Directive and amended from time to time) which is always subject to a 14-day cancellation period. (All Regions). OR An original credit transaction was not accepted because either: the recipient refused the original credit transaction, or original credit transactions are prohibited by applicable laws or regulations.

Prevention Steps

A reason code 85 chargeback can result from one of two things: merchant error or friendly fraud. Prevention tactics must adequately address both sources.

  1. Adhere to return and cancellation requests in a timely manner.
  2. Make customers aware of all return and cancellation policies before completing the transaction.
  3. Clearly explain situations that violate the return policy or don’t qualify for a refund.
  4. Write a lenient return and exchange policy.
  5. Share contact information and respond to cardholders’ attempts at communication.
  6. Dispute known cases of friendly fraud to challenge illegitimate cardholder behavior.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 85: Consumer Disputes

Description

Non-Receipt of Cash or Load Transaction Value at ATM

Typical Causes

The cardholder participated in the transaction and did not receive cash or load transaction value, or received a partial amount.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 90: Consumer Disputes

Description

Merchandise/Services Not Received

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

The customer claims you didn’t provide the goods or services as promised. The merchant delays delivery; the merchant charges the cardholder prior to shipping or delivery; the merchant ships on time or has the product available for pick-up but does not inform the customer; the cardholder fraudulently claims the goods or service did not arrive.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Services Not Provided or Merchandise Not Received

Prevention Steps

  1. Abide by the delivery date you promised.
  2. Have merchandise ready for pickup at the time you specified it would be available.
  3. Make sure you accurately describe the services that will be provided.
  4. Don’t charge the card until the merchandise has been shipped.
  5. Notify the customer as soon as possible if merchandise is out of stock or the delivery will be delayed.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 13.1: Consumer Disputes

Description

Cancelled Recurring Transaction

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

The cardholder claims you processed a recurring transaction after they requested a cancellation or you processed a recurring transaction on an account that had been closed. The cardholder withdraws permission to charge the account or cancels payment for subscription; cardholder or issuing bank cancels the account; merchant neglects to cancel a recurring transaction; merchant processes a transaction after being notified the cardholder's account was closed.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Cancelled Recurring Transaction

Prevention Steps

  1. Make sure qualified cancellation and non-renewal requests are fulfilled promptly.
  2. Send a notification after you’ve cancelled the recurring payment.
  3. If new fees are incurred after the cancellation, communicate with the cardholder about how those charges should be handled.
  4. Clearly and concisely communicate your cancellation policy and make it easy for customers to find the information.
  5. Remind customers of upcoming charges, especially if a significant amount of time passes between each recurring billing cycle.
  6. Use Visa Account Updater to replace outdated cardholder information with new data before you process the next recurring transaction.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 13.2: Consumer Disputes

Description

Not As Described Or Defective Merchandise/Services

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

  1. The cardholder claims goods or services provided didn’t match the description listed or verbally provided at the time of purchase, were defective or damaged, or the quality wasn’t what was expected.
  2. The merchandise was damaged in transit; the merchandise does not match the merchant's description; the cardholder disputes the quality of the product; the cardholder fraudulently claims the merchandise is damaged. (Note: Merchant may not direct the customer to the manufacturer for resolution. Also, this reason code supersedes merchants' return policy.)

Transaction Modifiers

  • Not as Described or Defective Merchandise/Services

Prevention Steps

  1. Make sure all service and merchandise descriptions are complete, accurate, and not misleading.
  2. Use the correct size boxes and sufficient packing material so items won’t break in transit.
  3. Make sure your fulfillment department is familiar with your merchandise, has a complete understanding of what has been purchased, and knows what to ship.
  4. Resolve the issue yourself. Don’t refer the cardholder to the manufacturer instead.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 13.3: Consumer Disputes

Description

Counterfeit Merchandise

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

The merchant is unaware of the counterfeit merchandise; the customer fraudulently claims the goods are not genuine. (Note: This reason code supersedes merchants' return policy.)

Transaction Modifiers

  • Counterfeit Merchandise

Prevention Steps

  1. Only sell genuine merchandise.
  2. Make sure all product descriptions are complete, accurate, and not misleading.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 13.4: Consumer Disputes

Description

Misrepresentation

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

The merchant's product descriptions are vague, inaccurate, or insufficient. Examples of typical merchant types for this dispute include: timeshare reseller, debt consolidation, credit repair, foreclosure relief services, investment products, and the like. (Note: This reason code supersedes merchants' return policy.)

Transaction Modifiers

  • Misrepresentation of the purchased good and/or service

Prevention Steps

  1. Make sure all descriptions of the services or merchandise are complete, accurate, and not misleading.
  2. Clearly and concisely communicate your terms of service and make it easy for customers to find the information.
  3. Fully comply with all of Visa’s requirements for free trials, introductory offers, and upsells.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 13.5: Consumer Disputes

Description

Credit Not Processed

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

The merchant didn't credit the account; the merchant issued the credit but not in time to be posted to the customer's most recent statement; the customer misunderstood the return policy; the merchant processed a transaction receipt that should have been voided.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Credit Not Processed

Prevention Steps

  1. Take care not to accidentally process transactions that should be voided or cancelled.
  2. Adhere to any promises for credits or refunds.
  3. Fulfill all qualified cancellations or refund requests promptly so the credit will appear on the cardholder’s next statement.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 13.6: Consumer Disputes

Description

Cancelled Merchandise / Services

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

  1. The cardholder claims to have returned merchandise or cancelled a service, but credit hasn’t been applied to the cardholder’s statement yet.
  2. The merchant has not yet issued a due credit; issued the credit but it hasn't posted to the customer's account yet; the merchant the customer misunderstood or was never clear on the return policy.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Cancelled Merchandise/Services

Prevention Steps

  1. If you never received returned merchandise from the cardholder, provide documentation that proves inaction on the cardholder’s part.
  2. If you received returned merchandise but didn’t accept it because it violated your return policy, provide documentation that proves you refused delivery for the merchandise and why. Share your return policy, note that it was displayed prominently, and show that the cardholder agreed to the terms at the time of the purchase.
  3. If the cardholder didn’t abide by your cancellation policy, provide documentation that proves why you didn’t fulfill the cancellation requisition. Share your cancellation policy, note that it was displayed prominently, and show that the cardholder agreed to the terms at the time of the purchase.
  4. If you fulfilled the cancellation request but the cardholder continued to use the services, provide documentation that proves the charge covers services used after the cancellation.
  5. If the dispute is invalid, provide documentation that proves the reasoning: the dispute is based solely on claims related to the quality of purchased items, or the dispute amount includes the cash-back portion of the transaction, or the merchandise cleared the merchant’s customs but is being held by the customer’s customs agency.
  6. If you have already processed a refund for the transaction in question, provide documentation that proves you have credited the cardholder’s account.
  7. If the cardholder no longer wishes to dispute the transaction, provide documentation that proves the issue has been resolved.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 13.7: Consumer Disputes

Description

Original Credit Transaction Not Accepted

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

The cardholder did not accept the credit or local laws prohibit the issuer from allowing original credit transactions (OCTs).

Transaction Modifiers

  • Original Credit Transaction Not Accepted

Prevention Steps

  1. Maintain accurate records
  2. Familiarize yourself with usage laws for areas you serve

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 13.8: Consumer Disputes

Description

Non-Receipt of Cash or Load Transaction Value

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

30 days (cut to 20 days in 2019)

Typical Causes

The cardholder claims not to have received cash or only received a partial amount from an ATM withdrawal. Or, the cardholder did not receive the correct load transaction value.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Non-Receipt of Cash or Load Transaction Value at ATM

Prevention Steps

  1. Reconcile ATMs promptly.
  2. Adjust out-of-balance ATMs.
  3. Process a credit as soon as possible if you notice a discrepancy.

Learn More about Visa Chargeback Reason Code 13.9: Consumer Disputes

Discover

Discover Chargeback Reason Codes

Reason code categories have changed a lot in the last few years...

Fraud

Description

Fraud – Card Present Transaction

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. A fraudulent transaction was made using the actual credit card, according to the cardholder.
  2. Merchant processed the order without authorization; The credit card was not swiped through the magnetic stripe reader; a card-not-present transaction was not identified as such; the cardholder did not approve or participate in the transaction.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Site to Store

Prevention Steps

  1. Wait to receive authorization before finishing transaction
  2. Wait to receive authorization before finishing transaction
  3. Strengthen internal fraud prevention policies and procedures for suspicious activity
  4. Provide timely responses to all retrieval requests

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code UA01: Fraud

Description

Fraud – Card Not Present Transaction

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. Cardholder claims a fraudulent transaction was made in a card-absence environment.
  2. The merchant does not request authorization; the merchant makes multiple attempts on a card that is declined, or otherwise attempts to force, circumvent, or override a declined authorization.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Site to Store
  • Card Not Present

Prevention Steps

  1. Obtain authorization
  2. Discontinue the transaction if a card has been declined
  3. Ask for an alternate form of payment
  4. Never force an authorization

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code UA02: Fraud

Description

Fraud – Chip Counterfeit Transaction

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. The cardholder claims to not have been involved in a transaction that was processed using an EMV/chip terminal.
  2. The merchant's card processor did not transmit the full chip data; a chip-reading terminal was not actually used; a transaction was made fraudulently by an unauthorized person.

Prevention Steps

  1. Upgrade to compliant terminals
  2. Obtain approval for all transactions
  3. Make sure to obtain the correct Cardholder Verification Method (CVM), such as a signature or PIN
  4. Train staff on the proper handling of terminal issue

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code UA05: Fraud

Description

Fraud – Chip and PIN Transaction

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. The cardholder claims to not have been involved in a transaction that was processed using a hybrid card at a stripe-only terminal of a chip-capable terminal not equipped with a PIN pad.
  2. The merchant's card processor did not transmit the full chip data; a transaction was made fraudulently by an unauthorized person.

Prevention Steps

  1. Upgrade to compliant terminals
  2. Obtain approval for all transactions
  3. Make sure to obtain the correct Cardholder Verification Method (CVM), such as a signature or PIN
  4. Train staff on the proper handling of terminal issue

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code UA06: Fraud

Description

Request Transaction Receipt (swiped card transactions)

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. Issuer requests documents for a transaction the cardholder claims was fraudulent (card-present.)
  2. Transaction signature does not match the card signature; cardholder discovers fraud; merchant did not obtain authorization; card imprint is not legible and/or does not have proper security features; receipt or other transaction documents are illegible.

Prevention Steps

  1. Always obtain authorization
  2. Make sure all card-present transactions are either chip-read or magnetic stripe-read
  3. Obtain an imprint or perform additional validation, such as PIN
  4. Always obtain legible signed receipt, and provide customer with a copy

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code UA10: Fraud

Description

Cardholder claims fraud (swiped transaction, no signature)

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. The cardholder claims this activity was fraudulent (card-present).
  2. Merchant did not obtain signature on a transaction; cardholder discovers fraud; merchant did not obtain authorization; card imprint is not legible and/or does not have proper security features; receipt or other transaction documents are illegible.

Prevention Steps

  1. Merchant should obtain cardholder’s authorization at the time of sale.
  2. Merchant should obtain cardholder’s signature at the transaction receipt
  3. If electronic machine or the terminal cannot recognize/read the card’s magnetic stripe, request authorization by key entering the account number. Be sure the key-entered account number matches the account number on the card. Use a manual printer to print the information from the face of the card at the order receipt that is signed by the cardholder.
  4. Suppose your terminal is not working, ,call your center for authorization approval and mention approval code on the order receipt in the space provided. Use a manual printer to print the information from the face of the card at the order receipt that is signed by the cardholder.

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code UA11: Fraud

Authorization

Description

No Authorization

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. The transaction was processed without authorization.
  2. The merchant does not request authorization; the merchant waits a day or more before requesting authorization; the merchant requests authorization for one amount, then adds a tip to the total before processing.

Prevention Steps

  1. Always authorize every transaction
  2. Obtain authorization on the day of the transaction 
  3. Don't add the tip to a previously authorized amount

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code NA: Authorization

Description

Declined Authorization

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. A declined transaction is presented for processing.
  2. The merchant does not request authorization; the merchant makes multiple attempts on a card that is declined, or otherwise attempts to force, circumvent, or override a declined authorization

Prevention Steps

  1. Obtain authorization
  2. Discontinue the transaction if a card has been declined
  3. Ask for an alternate form of payment
  4. Never force an authorization

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code DA: Authorization

Description

Authorization Noncompliance

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. The transaction was processed without a positive authorization response and/or contains an authorization response beyond the card's expiration date.
  2. Transaction was processed without electronic authorization, voice approval, or account verification; the transaction was forced after initially being declined.

Prevention Steps

  1. Always obtain authorization
  2. Do not force a transaction when a declined authorization has been received
  3. Do not process a transaction for more than the allowed tolerance level above the authorization amount

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code AT: Authorization

Processing Errors

Description

Invalid Card Number

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. The card number used for the transaction is not assigned to a valid account, or not assigned to the cardholder.
  2. The merchant mistypes or calculates incorrectly; card has expired.

Prevention Steps

Double check calculations and the final transaction amount before processing Double-check expiration date

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code IN: Processing Errors

Description

Late Presentation

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. The transaction was completed past the required time limits.
  2. The merchant does not process a transaction in a timely manner; the account was no longer in good standing at the time of processing; the transaction was delayed due to a POS system issue.

Prevention Steps

Send completed transactions to your card processor as soon as possible (preferably on day of the sale)

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code LP: Processing Errors

Card Member Disputes

Inquiry/Miscellaneous

Not Classified

Description

Not Classified

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. Any claims of invalid transactions which do not fall under any other classification.
  2. The merchant's attempts to resolve the issue were unsuccessful; other reasons specific to the claim.

Prevention Steps

Will fluctuate depending on the claim The cardholder may also initiate this chargeback up to 365 days from the ordering date for the credit card transaction, Debit Card Transactions and Prepaid Identity Known Card Transactions.

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code NC: Not Classified

Expired

Description

Expired Card

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. The cardholder challenges the validity of a transaction because the card had expired at the time.
  2. Card expired before the transaction date; the merchant processed the transaction without authorization; the card was valid at the time of transaction but expired before the transaction was processed.

Prevention Steps

  1. Always check the expiration date on all cards
  2. Double check customer's claim of expiration on card-not-present transactions
  3. Always request authorization
  4. Do not force transactions

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code EX: Expired

Services

Description

Good Faith Investigation

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. The merchant accepted responsibility in response to a Good Faith Investigation Ticket Retrieval Request.
  2. Evidence may be submitted to Discover that the cardholder received duplicate credits, if you've applied a credit to the card account in response to a Good Faith Inquiry and a chargeback was also processed because you accepted responsibility for the card transaction. In all other cases, this chargeback is final and non-appealable.

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code 5: Services

Description

Does Not Recognize

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. The cardholder claims that he or she does not recognize the transaction appearing on the cardholder statement.
  2. The cardholder’s billing statement is incorrect; the buyer has forgotten the transaction; the cardholder does not recognize the billing descriptor; the customer wants a refund without going through the regular process; the customer was not aware that a family member used the card.

Prevention Steps

  1. Create clear billing descriptors
  2. Add Customer Service contact information to the descriptor
  3. Streamline returns policy for user friendliness

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code AA: Services

Description

Recurring Payments

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. The cardholder claims to have been charged for a canceled recurring transaction.
  2. The cardholder withdraws permission to charge the account or cancels payment for subscription; merchant neglects to cancel a recurring transaction; merchant processes a transaction after being notified the cardholder's account was closed; merchant raises the charge amount without informing the cardholder.

Prevention Steps

  1. Terminate recurring transactions when the cardholder requests cancelation
  2. Consider a no-strings-attached cancelation policy
  3. Don't increase the transaction amount without the cardholder's consent
  4. Don't prematurely bill the cardholder
  5. Send notifications for upcoming charges

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code AP: Services

Description

Altered Amount

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. The amount in the authorization does not match the amount from the transaction (includes cash advance transactions).
  2. The system posted a different amount to the cardholder’s account; ATM dispensed an amount different from the amount charged to the account (less any set fees or service charges); cardholder approved the for a cash advance or ATM transaction, but a different amount was dispensed/charged to the account; cardholder did not request cash over, but cash over was charged to the account.

Prevention Steps

  1. Double check calculations and the final transaction amount before processing
  2. Don't change the transaction amount without the cardholder's consent
  3. Reconcile recorded cash over amounts with actual cash distributed

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code AW: Services

Description

Credit/Debit Posted Incorrectly

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. The cardholder was debited for a transaction that should have been a credit.
  2. The merchant processed a debit instead of a credit, processed a credit instead of processing a reversal, or in some other way processed a transaction that differed from the obtained authorization.

Prevention Steps

  1. Double check calculations and the final transaction amount before processing
  2. Train staff on the proper procedures for processing credits, debits, and reversals

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code CD: Services

Description

Duplicate Processing

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. A single transaction processed two or more times.
  2. The merchant tries to submit multiple batches at one time; the transaction has multiple receipts; the transaction is duplicated in the merchant's system; the transaction was processed but the cardholder paid for the same merchandise or service by other means.

Prevention Steps

  1. Review transaction receipts before depositing 
  2. Submit a batch only one time
  3. Credit any duplicate transactions
  4. Train staff on the proper procedures for handling credits

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code DP: Services

Description

Illegible Sales Data

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. A requested sales receipt was provided but was not legible.
  2. The receipt is unreadable due to light ink, ribbed or colored paper, or fading; the original order receipt is mishandled or is scanned at a smaller size.

Prevention Steps

  1. If the Transaction Documentation is required to display a Card print or issuer cannot receive the card transaction amount from the cardholder for any reason.
  2. The Merchant bank may submit the Card Sale on the correct Card Number in the resolve of the Dispute.
  3. Issuers may receive Invalid Card Number Disputes during the times stipulated.

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code IC: Services

Description

Non-Receipt of Cash from ATM

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

Cardholder did not receive the full cash withdrawal at an ATM.

Prevention Steps

  1. Reconcile ATMs in a timely manner
  2. Adjust any out of balance machines promptly
  3. In case of a discrepancy, process a credit/reversal as soon as possible

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code NF: Services

Description

Paid by Other Means

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. Cardholder was charged for a transaction that was processed using an alternate form of payment.
  2. The merchant didn't void multiple transactions.

Prevention Steps

  1. Double check calculations, transaction amounts, and payment type before processing
  2. Void any transactions if the cardholder wishes to use a different payment method

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code PM: Services

Description

Non-Receipt of Goods, Services, or Cash

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. Non-Receipt of Goods or Services
  2. The merchant delays delivery; the merchant charges the cardholder prior to shipping or delivery; the merchant ships on time or has the product available for pick-up but does not inform the customer; the cardholder fraudulently claims the goods or service did not arrive.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Airline Transaction
  • Site to Store
  • Card Not Present

Prevention Steps

  1. Provide goods and services as promised
  2. Don't charge the cardholder's account until after the product has been shipped
  3. Let cardholders know when the product has been shipped and the estimated date for delivery
  4. Use delivery confirmation
  5. Make sure products are available for pick up when specified

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code RG: Services

Description

Cardholder Disputes Quality of Goods or Services

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

  1. The cardholder claims that the goods or services were defective or not as described prior to the transaction.
  2. The merchandise was damaged upon its arrival; the merchandise does not match the merchant's description; the cardholder disputes the quality of the product; the cardholder fraudulently claims the merchandise is damaged.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Site to Store
  • Card Not Present

Prevention Steps

  1. Double check orders to ensure the correct item is shipped
  2. Package items carefully to avoid damage during shipping
  3. Package items carefully to avoid damage during shipping
  4. Accept returns from cardholders and issue credit promptly
  5. Never sell counterfeit products

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code RM: Services

Description

Credit Not Processed

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 Days recommended

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

not applicable

Typical Causes

The cardholder refused delivery of goods or services or returned merchandise and credit was not processed.

Prevention Steps

  1. Process all credit vouchers promptly
  2. Properly disclose special refund policies on the sales draft in prominently near the cardholder’s signature
  3. Consider updating returns policy

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code RN2: Services

Dispute Compliance

Description

Dispute Compliance

Typical Causes

The acquirer or merchant did not comply with the applicable Operating Regulations.

Learn More about Discover Chargeback Reason Code DC: Dispute Compliance

Point-of-Interaction Error

Cardholder Disputes

Consumer Disputes

Mastercard

Mastercard Chargeback Reason Codes

Reason code categories have changed a lot in the last few years...

Fraud

Description

No Cardholder Authorization

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 calendar days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

45 calendar days

Typical Causes

  1. The cardholder claims the transaction was unauthorized.
  2. The transaction was placed by someone who had fraudulently obtained the account information; the cardholder didn't recognize the transaction (billing descriptor) on the credit card statement; a family member used the account without the primary cardholder's knowledge.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Digital Goods Download
  • Site to Store
  • CNP Airline Transaction
  • Customer Profile
  • Recurring Transaction

Prevention Steps

  1. Consider using all the tools available to you—including Mastercard SecureCode, CVC2, and Address Verification Service (AVS).
  2. Use pre-sale fraud detection service providers that can help verify the cardholder’s identity, detect potential criminal activity, and reduce the risk of accepting unauthorized transaction.
  3. Use a billing descriptor that is easily recognized by the cardholder.
  4. Always submit an authorization request, no matter the transaction amount.
  5. Make sure you differentiate between card-absent and card-present transactions during clearing by noting internet, phone, or mail orders.
  6. Only use EMV-compliant terminals.
  7. Always use the correct cardholder verification method—signature, PIN, etc.
  8. Create clear billing descriptors
  9. Do not accept expired cards under any circumstances
  10. Obtain secondary validation (PIN, signature, imprint etc.)
  11. Do not override declined transactions
  12. Train staff on the proper procedures for handling terminal issues

Learn More about MasterCard Chargeback Reason Code 4837: Fraud

Description

Fraudulent Processing of Transactions

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 calendar days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

45 calendar days

Typical Causes

The cardholder claims to have authorized one card-present transaction with you, but one or more additional transactions conducted in the next 15 minutes were not authorized.

Prevention Steps

  1. If you notice a duplicate transaction, issue a credit as soon as possible
  2. Double check all transaction receipts before they are deposited.
  3. Only send batches one time.
  4. If the customer wants to change to a different form of payment after initially offering the payment card, be sure to void the charge.

Learn More about MasterCard Chargeback Reason Code 4840: Fraud

Description

Questionable Merchant Activity

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 calendar days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

45 calendar days

Typical Causes

  1. This transaction is listed in a Mastercard Announcement under the Global Merchant Audit Program (GMAP).
  2. This transaction violates Mastercard’s rules or the merchant was on a Mastercard security list.
  3. The acquirer processed a transaction for a merchant that later was listed in a MasterCard Global Security Bulletin for violating GMAP or QMAP.

Prevention Steps

  1. Always adhere to Mastercard rules and regulations.
  2. Maintain accurate records
  3. Check transactions against the Mastercard Global Security Bulletin list

Learn More about MasterCard Chargeback Reason Code 4849: Fraud

Description

Cardholder Does Not Recognize—Potential Fraud

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 calendar days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

45 calendar days

Typical Causes

The cardholder claims not to recognize a card-not-present transaction.

Prevention Steps

  1. Consider using all the tools available to you—including Mastercard SecureCode, CVC2, and Address Verification Service (AVS).
  2. Use pre-sale fraud detection service providers that can help verify the cardholder’s identity, detect potential criminal activity, and reduce the risk of accepting unauthorized transaction.
  3. Use a billing descriptor that is easily recognized by the cardholder.
  4. Make sure you differentiate between card-absent and card-present transactions during authorization and clearing.

Learn More about MasterCard Chargeback Reason Code 4863: Fraud

Description

Chip Liability Shift

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 calendar days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

45 calendar days

Typical Causes

The cardholder has a chip card and someone made a counterfeit copy of it. You processed a transaction with the counterfeit card on a terminal that wasn’t EMV-compliant rather than using a chip reading device that would have detected the fraud. Now, the cardholder claims the purchase was unauthorized.

Prevention Steps

  1. Only use EMV-compliant terminals.
  2. Always use the correct cardholder verification method—signature, PIN, etc.
  3. Create an electronic or manual imprint for every card-present transaction.

Learn More about MasterCard Chargeback Reason Code 4870: Fraud

Description

Chip/PIN Liability Shift

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 calendar days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

45 calendar days

Typical Causes

A chip card was issued, but the cardholder claims not to have possession of it. You processed a transaction without obtaining the cardholder’s PIN, and now the cardholder claims the purchase was unauthorized.

Prevention Steps

  1. Only use EMV-compliant terminals.
  2. Always use the correct cardholder verification method—signature, PIN, etc.
  3. Create an electronic or manual imprint for every card-present transaction.

Learn More about MasterCard Chargeback Reason Code 4871: Fraud

Authorization

Description

Warning Bulletin File

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

45 calendar days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

45 calendar days

Typical Causes

Mastercard is in the process of updating chargeback management regulations. Issuers are currently allowed to use reason code 4807, however, this code will soon be eliminate. It will be incorporated into code 4808.

Prevention Steps

This code, while currently functional, is being consolidated into 4808, and therefore should not be used.

Learn More about MasterCard Chargeback Reason Code 4807: Authorization

Description

Authorization-Related Chargeback

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

90 calendar days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

45 calendar days

Typical Causes

The merchant didn't obtain authorization or attempted to obtain authorization after the transaction date; the merchant attempted to "force" the transaction; the merchant re-swiped the card multiple times after an initial authorization decline.

Prevention Steps

  1. Confirm authorization on all transactions
  2. Make sure terminal are chip-compliant
  3. Do not override declined transactions

Learn More about MasterCard Chargeback Reason Code 4808: Authorization

Description

Account Number Not On File

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

45 calendar days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

45 calendar days

Typical Causes

Mastercard is in the process of updating chargeback management regulations. Issuers are currently allowed to use reason codes 4812, however, this code will soon be eliminate. It will be incorporated into code 4808.

Prevention Steps

This code, while currently functional, is being consolidated into 4808, and therefore should not be used.

Learn More about MasterCard Chargeback Reason Code 4812: Authorization

Processing Errors

Card Member Disputes

Inquiry/Miscellaneous

Not Classified

Expired

Services

Dispute Compliance

Point-of-Interaction Error

Description

Point-of-Interaction Error

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 calendar days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

45 calendar days

Typical Causes

The merchant submitted a single batch of transactions multiple times; the merchant deposited both copies of the sales receipt (merchant and sales copy); the merchant created two sales receipts for a single transaction; the merchant deposited a receipt with more than one acquirer; the merchant processed a single transaction multiple times.

Transaction Modifiers

  • DCC Selected by Merchant
  • DCC Unknown/Refused
  • Late Presentment
  • Incorrect Transaction Amount

Prevention Steps

  1. Review transaction receipts before depositing
  2. Submit a batch only one time
  3. Credit any duplicate transactions
  4. Deposit receipts with only one acquirer
  5. Train staff on the proper procedures for handling credits

Learn More about MasterCard Chargeback Reason Code 4834: Point-of-Interaction Error

Description

Transaction Amount Differs

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 calendar days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

45 calendar days

Typical Causes

Mastercard is in the process of updating chargeback management regulations. Issuers are currently allowed to use reason code 4831, however, this code will soon be eliminate. It will be incorporated into code 4834.

Prevention Steps

  1. Double check calculations and the final transaction amount before processing
  2. Don't change the transaction amount without the cardholder's consent
  3. Void any transactions if the cardholder wishes to use a different payment method

Learn More about MasterCard Chargeback Reason Code 4831: Point-of-Interaction Error

Description

Late Presentment

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 calendar days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

45 calendar days

Typical Causes

  1. You presented the transaction more than seven calendar days after the transaction date and the account is now permanently closed.
  2. The transaction wasn't processed in a timely fashion and the account has since been closed; transaction was posted after 180 days of the original transaction date.

Prevention Steps

  1. Always send an authorization request before processing a transaction.
  2. Present transactions to the issuer within the specified time limit.
  3. Send completed transactions to your card processor as soon as possible (preferably on day of the sale)

Learn More about MasterCard Chargeback Reason Code 4842: Point-of-Interaction Error

Description

Correct Transaction Currency Code Not Provided

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 calendar days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

45 calendar days

Typical Causes

  1. The cardholder claims you didn’t give the option to pick a currency or you used POI currency conversion incorrectly.
  2. The transaction currency differs from the currency transmitted through Visa; the cardholder was not advised or did not agree that Dynamic Currency Conversion (DCC) would occur.

Prevention Steps

  1. Don’t automatically apply dynamic currency conversion to transactions. Give customers the option to select the service if they are interested, but don’t require its use.
  2. Have systems in place to manage multiple currencies. Make sure staff are trained on procedures.
  3. Inform cardholders of the use of currency conversion and applicable fees.
  4. Always give the cardholder the option to make the purchase using local currency.
  5. Train your sales staff on proper procedures for transaction using a different currency.

Learn More about MasterCard Chargeback Reason Code 4846: Point-of-Interaction Error

Description

Installment Billing Dispute

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

45 calendar days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

45 calendar days

Typical Causes

The cardholder claims an installment charge to their account was made incorrectly.

Learn More about MasterCard Chargeback Reason Code 4850: Point-of-Interaction Error

Description

Domestic Chargeback Dispute (Europe Region Only)

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

45 calendar days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

45 calendar days

Typical Causes

A chargeback that occurs when a customer states the transaction should have been a credit to the account but was processed as a sale

Learn More about MasterCard Chargeback Reason Code 4999: Point-of-Interaction Error

Cardholder Disputes

Description

Cardholder Dispute

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 calendar days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

45 calendar days

Typical Causes

The merchant sent the wrong item; the item was damaged during shipping; the merchant inaccurately described the products or services; the merchant didn't perform the services as described; the merchant did not accept a product return; the merchant sold counterfeit products; the quality of goods or services wasn't adequate.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Counterfeit Merchandise
  • Credit Not Processed
  • Digital Goods Purchase of USD 25 or Less
  • Non-Receipt
  • Not As Described/Defective
  • Recurring Transaction
  • Timeshare Cancellation
  • Transaction Not Completed

Prevention Steps

  1. Clearly explain the situations that might cause you to charge the card including charges for loss, theft, or damage.
  2. Have the cardholder read and agree to terms of service before processing the original transaction.
  3. Double check orders to ensure the correct item is shipped
  4. Double check orders to ensure the correct item is shipped
  5. Provide honest, detailed product descriptions
  6. Accept returns from cardholders and issue credit promptly
  7. Never sell counterfeit products

Learn More about MasterCard Chargeback Reason Code 4853: Cardholder Disputes

Description

Canceled Recurring or Digital Goods Transactions

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 calendar days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

45 calendar days

Typical Causes

  1. Mastercard is in the process of updating chargeback management regulations. Issuers are currently allowed to use reason code 4841, however, this code will soon be eliminate. It will be incorporated into code 4853.
  2. Cardholder claims the merchant continued to bill the card after a recurring transaction was cancelled, or without explicit consent from the cardholder.
  3. Cardholder did not understand the original terms of the transaction; cardholder received goods/used services after cancelling the recurring transaction; cardholder canceled too late to stop the transaction; merchant did not cancel the transaction.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Recurring Transaction – Digital Goods

Prevention Steps

This code, while currently functional, is being consolidated into 4853, and therefore should not be used.

Learn More about MasterCard Chargeback Reason Code 4841: Cardholder Disputes

Description

Cardholder Dispute—Not Elsewhere Classified (U.S. Region Only)

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

*120 calendar days or 60 calendar days from first learning about the dispute from the cardholder

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

45 calendar days

Typical Causes

The cardholder has made an unsuccessful good-faith effort to resolve a dispute with the merchant.

Prevention Steps

Resolve all customer complaints as quickly as possible. *or 60 calendar days from first learning about the dispute from the cardholder 

Learn More about MasterCard Chargeback Reason Code 4854: Cardholder Disputes

Description

Goods or Services Not Provided

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 calendar days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

45 calendar days

Typical Causes

Mastercard is in the process of updating chargeback management regulations. Issuers are currently allowed to use reason code 4855, however, this code will soon be eliminate. It will be incorporated into code 4853.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Digital Goods Purchase of USD 25 or Less
  • European Transaction for Travel Services

Prevention Steps

This code, while currently functional, is being consolidated into 4853, and therefore should not be used. *Other time modifiers may apply

Learn More about MasterCard Chargeback Reason Code 4855: Cardholder Disputes

Description

Addendum, No-show, or ATM Dispute

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 calendar days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

45 calendar days

Typical Causes

The cardholder claims not to have received cash or only received a partial amount from an ATM withdrawal.

Transaction Modifiers

  • ATM Transaction

Prevention Steps

  1. Reconcile ATMs promptly.
  2. Adjust out-of-balance ATMs.
  3. Process a credit as soon as possible if you notice a discrepancy.

Learn More about MasterCard Chargeback Reason Code 4859: Cardholder Disputes

Description

Credit Not Processed

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

120 calendar days

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

45 calendar days

Typical Causes

Mastercard is in the process of updating chargeback management regulations. Issuers are currently allowed to use reason code 4860, however, this code will soon be eliminate. It will be incorporated into code 4853.

Prevention Steps

This code, while currently functional, is being consolidated into 4853 and therefore should not be used.

Learn More about MasterCard Chargeback Reason Code 4860: Cardholder Disputes

Consumer Disputes

American Express

American Express Chargeback Reason Codes

Reason code categories have changed a lot in the last few years...

Fraud

Description

Missing Imprint

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

Processed a transaction without using the magnetic stripe or chip card data, and the cardholder claims he or she didn’t participate in the purchase. Note: This reason code should not be used for card-not-present transactions or charges that qualify for the keyed-no imprint program.

Prevention Steps

  1. Create an electronic or manual imprint for every card-present transaction.
  2. Use fallback options—like manually entering transaction data—as a last resort.
  3. If you do perform a key-entered transaction, make a manual imprint of the card.
  4. Only use EMV-compliant terminals.
  5. Always use the correct cardholder verification method—signature, PIN, etc.
  6. Make sure you differentiate between card-not-present and card-present transactions during clearing by noting internet, phone, or mail orders.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code F10: Fraud

Description

Missing Signature

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

The merchant neglected to give the cardholder a copy of the signed receipt; signature on the receipt is invisible or not prominent due to light ink, ribbed or colored paper, or fading; the original order receipt is mishandled or is scanned at a smaller size.

Prevention Steps

  1. Scan or make copies of the order receipt at actual size
  2. Maintain full ink/toner in machines
  3. Print and keep a copy of the order receipt
  4. Always provide cardholder with a copy of the receipt

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code F14: Fraud

Description

No Card Member Authorization

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

The cardholder claims he or she has previously shopped with the merchant but didn’t participate in this particular purchase.

Prevention Steps

  1. Consider using fraud detection tools such as CID and Address Verification Service (AVS).
  2. Use pre-sale fraud detection service providers that can help verify the cardholder’s identity, detect potential criminal activity, and reduce the risk of accepting an authorized transaction.
  3. Use a billing descriptor that is easily recognized by the cardholder.
  4. Always submit an authorization request, no matter the transaction amount.
  5. Create an electronic or manual imprint for every card-present transaction.
  6. Use fallback options—like manually entering transaction data—as a last resort.
  7. Only use EMV-compliant terminals.
  8. Always use the correct cardholder verification method—signature, PIN, etc.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code F24: Fraud

Description

Card Not Present

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

Processed a mail order, telephone order, or internet order, and the cardholder claims he or she didn’t participate in the purchase.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Airline Transaction

Prevention Steps

  1. Consider using fraud detection tools such as card security code (CID) and Address Verification Service (AVS).
  2. Use pre-sale fraud detection service providers that can help verify the cardholder’s identity, detect potential criminal activity, and reduce the risk of accepting an unauthorized transaction.
  3. Use a billing descriptor that is easily recognized by the cardholder. Always submit an authorization request, no matter the transaction amount.
  4. Make sure you differentiate between card-not-present and card-present transactions during clearing by noting internet, phone, or mail orders.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code F29: Fraud

Description

EMV Counterfeit

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

Processed a transaction with a counterfeit card, and the cardholder claims he or she didn’t participate in the purchase. The counterfeit card wasn’t detected because either the POS wasn’t chip-and-PIN enabled or the transaction was manually keyed. Note: This reason code should not be used for contactless transactions or digital wallet payments.

Prevention Steps

  1. Only use EMV-compliant terminals.
  2. Always use the correct cardholder verification method—signature, PIN, etc.
  3. Make sure you differentiate between card-not-present and card-present transactions during clearing by noting internet, phone, or mail orders.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code F30: Fraud

Description

EMV Lost/Stolen/Non-Received

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

Processed a transaction but the cardholder denies participating in it because the card was lost, stolen, or never received. The fraud wasn’t detected because either the POS was not chip-and-PIN enabled or the transaction was manually keyed. Note: This reason code should not be used for contactless transactions, digital wallet payments, or charges that qualify for the “No PIN” program.

Prevention Steps

  1. Only use EMV-compliant terminals.
  2. Always use the correct cardholder verification method—signature, PIN, etc.
  3. Make sure you differentiate between card-not-present and card-present transactions during clearing by noting internet, phone, or mail orders.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code F31: Fraud

Authorization

Description

Charge Amount Exceeds Authorization Amount

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

The amount of the authorization approval was less than the amount you charged the card.

Prevention Steps

  1. Don’t change the amount of a transaction once authorization has been requested and approved.
  2. If you add gratuities to transactions, don’t exceed the acceptable limit.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code A01: Authorization

Description

No Valid Authorization

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

An authorization approval before processing the transaction was not received . The request was either declined or the card had expired.

Prevention Steps

  1. Always send an authorization request before processing a transaction.
  2. If you receive a “decline” authorization response, either terminate the transaction or submit a second authorization request. Never proceed without authorization.
  3. Check the card’s expiration date before processing the transaction. Ask for an alternate form of payment if the card is no longer valid.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code A02: Authorization

Description

Authorization Approval Expired

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

The authorization approval expired before you charged the card.

Prevention Steps

Make sure you send completed transactions to your payment processor within the timeframe specified in your merchant agreement. A good practice is to submit transactions on the day of the sale or as soon as possible.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code A08: Authorization

Processing Errors

Description

Unassigned Card Number

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

Processed a transaction using an invalid or otherwise incorrect card number. Note: Resubmission of the transaction if you can provide the correct card number.

Prevention Steps

  1. Always request authorization before completing a transaction.
  2. If an authorization request is denied, stop the transaction and ask for an alternate form of payment.
  3. Always swipe or dip a card—only use fall-back options in emergency situations.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code P01: Processing Errors

Description

Credit Processed as Charge

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

Processed a transaction, but the cardholder claims it should have been a refund.

Prevention Steps

  1. Take care not to accidentally process transactions that should be voided or cancelled
  2. Adhere to any promises for credits or refunds.
  3. Fulfill all qualified cancellations or refund requests promptly so the credit will appear on the cardholder’s next statement.
  4. If you notice a duplicate transaction, issue a credit as soon as possible.
  5. Double check all transaction receipts before they are deposited.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code P03: Processing Errors

Description

Charge Processed as Credit

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

Processed a refund, but the cardholder claims it should have been a transaction.

Prevention Steps

  1. Take care not to accidentally process transactions that should be voided or cancelled.
  2. Double check all transaction receipts before they are deposited.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code P04: Processing Errors

Description

Incorrect Charge Amount

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

The transaction amount you processed differs from the amount the cardholder agreed to pay.

Prevention Steps

  1. Unless authorized, never change the amount of a completed transaction without the cardholder’s consent.
  2. Use caution when entering handwritten transaction information. 3) Always swipe or dip a card—only use fall-back options in emergency situations.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code P05: Processing Errors

Description

Late Submission

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

The transaction was not submitted within the required time frame.

Prevention Steps

Make sure you send completed transactions to your payment processor within the timeframe specified in your merchant agreement. A good practice is to submit transactions on the day of the sale or as soon as possible.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code P07: Processing Errors

Description

Duplicate Charge

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

A single transaction was submitted more than once.

Prevention Steps

  1. If you notice a duplicate transaction, issue a credit as soon as possible.
  2. Double check all transaction receipts before they are deposited.
  3. Only send batches one time.
  4. If the customer wants to change to a different form of payment after initially offering the payment card, be sure to void the charge.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code P08: Processing Errors

Description

Non-Matching Card Number

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

The card number in the submission does not match the card number used for the original transaction.

Prevention Steps

  1. Use caution when entering handwritten transaction information.
  2. Always swipe or dip a card—only use fall-back options in emergency situations.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code P22: Processing Errors

Description

Currency Discrepancy

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

Processed a transaction but didn’t use the correct currency.

Prevention Steps

  1. Have systems in place to manage multiple currencies. Make sure staff are trained on procedures.
  2. Don’t automatically convert currencies for international shoppers. Allow customers to opt-in to a conversion service if they are interested, but don’t require its use.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code P23: Processing Errors

Card Member Disputes

Description

Credit Not Processed

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

The cardholder claims you were supposed to provide a refund, but a credit hasn’t been applied to the card yet.

Prevention Steps

  1. Make sure your refund or cancellation policy clearly explains what the cardholder is expected to do, and make the policy easy to find.
  2. Adhere to any promises for credits or refunds.
  3. Fulfill all qualified cancellations or refund requests promptly so the credit will appear on the cardholder’s next statement.
  4. If you will be crediting the cardholder for a reduced amount, communicate the difference before processing the credit.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code C02: Card Member Disputes

Description

Goods/Services Returned or Refused

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

The cardholder claims to have returned merchandise, but you didn’t provide a refund. Or, the cardholder refused to accept the services offered or the delivery of goods, but you didn’t provide a credit.

Prevention Steps

  1. For card-present transactions, clearly disclose the return policy on the transaction receipt. If the policy is on the front of the receipt, it should be near the customer signature line. If it is printed on the back, the cardholder must sign the front and initial the back near the policy disclosure.
  2. For card-present transactions, print the words “no refunds” or “in-store credit only” on all copies of the transaction receipt if you do not allow returns or have a limited return policy.
  3. For online transactions, clearly disclose the return policy, either on the checkout page that contains the final purchase amount or on the checkout page near the submit button. Require customers to select a “click to accept” box or acknowledge the policy in some other way before completing the purchase.
  4. Don’t accept delivery of returned merchandise if it doesn’t comply with your policy.
  5. Fulfill all qualified cancellations or refund requests promptly so the credit will appear on the cardholder’s next statement.
  6. If you will be crediting the cardholder for a reduced amount, communicate the difference before processing the credit.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code C04: Card Member Disputes

Description

Goods/Services Canceled

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

The cardholder claims that the goods or services ordered were cancelled, but you didn’t provide a refund.

Prevention Steps

  1. For card-present transactions, clearly disclose the cancellation policy on the transaction receipt. If the policy is on the front of the receipt, it should be near the customer signature line. If it is printed on the back, the cardholder must sign the front and initial the back near the policy disclosure.
  2. For online transactions, clearly disclose the cancellation policy, either on the checkout page that contains the final purchase amount or on the checkout page near the submit button. Require customers to select a “click to accept” box or acknowledge the policy in some other way before completing the purchase.
  3. Fulfill all qualified cancellations requests promptly so the credit will appear on the cardholder’s next statement.
  4. If you will be crediting the cardholder for a reduced amount, communicate the difference before processing the credit.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code C05: Card Member Disputes

Description

Goods/Services Not Received or Only Partially Received

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

The cardholder claims not to have received the goods or services. Or, the cardholder only partially received what was promised.

Transaction Modifiers

  • Airline Transaction
  • Digital Goods Download
  • Site to Store

Prevention Steps

  1. Abide by the delivery date you promised.
  2. Have merchandise ready for pickup at the time you specified it would be available.
  3. Make sure you accurately describe the services that will be provided.
  4. Don’t charge the card until the merchandise has been shipped.
  5. Notify the customer as soon as possible if merchandise is out of stock or the delivery will be delayed.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code C08: Card Member Disputes

Description

Paid by Other Means

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

The cardholder claims to have paid with a different payment method.

Prevention Steps

  1. Double check all transaction receipts before they are deposited.
  2. If the customer wants to change to a different form of payment after initially offering the payment card, be sure to void the charge.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code C14: Card Member Disputes

Description

“No Show” or CARDeposit Canceled

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

Cardholder was billed for lodging services that were allegedly canceled.

Prevention Steps

  1. Always inform the cardholder of your cancellation policy at the time of the reservation
  2. Log all confirmation and cancellation numbers as required by the CARDeposit programs

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code C18: Card Member Disputes

Description

Canceled Recurring Billing

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

The cardholder claims to have cancelled a recurring billing transaction but was still charged. Or, the cardholder tried to cancel the transaction but was unable to.

Prevention Steps

  1. Make sure qualified cancellation and non-renewal requests are fulfilled promptly.
  2. Send a notification after you’ve cancelled the recurring payment. If new fees are incurred after the cancellation, communicate with the cardholder about how those charges should be handled.
  3. Clearly and concisely communicate your cancellation policy and make it easy for customers to find the information.
  4. Remind customers of upcoming charges, especially if a significant amount of time passes between each recurring billing cycle.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code C28: Card Member Disputes

Description

Goods/Services Not As Described

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

The cardholder claims to have received goods or services that were different from what was offered at the time of the purchase.

Prevention Steps

  1. Make sure all service and merchandise descriptions are complete, accurate, and not misleading.
  2. Make sure your fulfillment department is familiar with your merchandise, has a complete understanding of what has been purchased, and knows what to ship.
  3. Provide exceptional customer service and promptly acknowledge customers when they make contact.
  4. If the cardholder contacts you to resolve the issue, promptly fulfill all valid requests for replacements or refunds.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code C31: Card Member Disputes

Description

Goods/Services Damaged or Defective

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

The cardholder claims to have received goods or services that were damaged or defective.

Prevention Steps

  1. Provide exceptional customer service and promptly acknowledge customers when they make contact.
  2. If the cardholder contacts you to resolve the issue, promptly fulfill all valid requests for replacements or refunds.
  3. Use the correct size boxes and sufficient packing material so items won’t break in transit.
  4. Resolve the issue yourself. Don’t refer the cardholder to the manufacturer instead.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code C32: Card Member Disputes

Inquiry/Miscellaneous

Description

Vehicle Rental – Capital Damages

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

  1. Cardholder misunderstood responsibility for capital damages
  2. Cardholder disagrees with charges
  3. Total damages exceed 110% of the agreed-upon amount
  4. The merchant made an error in calculating the total

Prevention Steps

  1. Maintain proof that the cardholder agreed to and signed an acknowledgment of responsibility for capital damages
  2. Make sure total charges do not exceed 110% of the agreed-upon amount

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code M10: Inquiry/Miscellaneous

Description

Vehicle Rental – Theft or Loss of Use

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

The merchant bills the cardholder for AMX-covered costs

Prevention Steps

  1. Maintain proof that charges were valid and not for theft, loss of use, or other fees
  2. Maintain proof that a credit which directly offsets the disputed charge has already been processed.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code M49: Inquiry/Miscellaneous

Description

Chargeback Authorization

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

American Express sent an inquiry to learn more about the transaction, and you responded by authorizing American Express to proceed with a chargeback.

Prevention Steps

  1. Maintain complete and accurate records for each transaction you process.
  2. Make sure you can access this information quickly and easily.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code M01: Inquiry/Miscellaneous

Description

Insufficient Reply

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

American Express sent an inquiry to learn more about the transaction, but you didn’t provide enough information.

Prevention Steps

  1. Maintain complete and accurate records for each transaction you process.
  2. Make sure you can access this information quickly and easily.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code R03: Inquiry/Miscellaneous

Description

No Reply

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

American Express sent an inquiry to learn more about the transaction, but you didn’t reply within the specified time frame.

Prevention Steps

  1. Maintain complete and accurate records for each transaction you process.
  2. Make sure you can access this information quickly and easily.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code R13: Inquiry/Miscellaneous

Description

Fraud Full Recourse Program

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

The cardholder denies authorizing the charge and the merchant has been placed in the Fraud Full Recourse Program.

Prevention Steps

  1. Proof that you had not been placed in the Fraud Full Recourse Program at the time of the Chargeback, or
  2. Proof that a credit which directly offsets the disputed charge has already been processed.

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code FR2: Inquiry/Miscellaneous

Description

Immediate Chargeback Program

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

The cardholder has disputed the charge and the merchant has been placed in the Immediate Chargeback Program.

Prevention Steps

  1. Issue credits/refunds within 7 calendar days.
  2. Ensure your refund/cancellation policies clearly state time frames of when credits will be issued

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code FR4: Inquiry/Miscellaneous

Description

Partial Immediate Chargeback Program

Time Limit (Issuer/Cardholder)

not applicable

Time Limit (Acquirer/Merchant)

20 days

Typical Causes

The cardholder has disputed the charge and the merchant has been placed in the Partial Immediate Chargeback Program.

Prevention Steps

  1. Issue credits/refunds within 7 calendar days.
  2. Ensure your refund/cancellation policies clearly state time frames of when credits will be issued

Learn More about American Express Chargeback Reason Code FR6: Inquiry/Miscellaneous

Not Classified

Expired

Services

Dispute Compliance

Point-of-Interaction Error

Cardholder Disputes

Consumer Disputes