Merchants who receive a chargeback for a transaction placed with a Visa card may encounter reason code 80, which indicates an improperly processed transaction that the cardholder does not believe they should be responsible for paying. The actual underlying cause of this chargeback is usually merchant error or friendly fraud. Merchants who believe they have received an invalid chargeback under reason code 80 may be able to represent the transaction and reverse the chargeback with the right compelling evidence.
What is Visa Chargeback Reason Code 80?
Visa chargeback reason code 80 falls under the “Point-of-Interaction Error” category. The shorthand description is “Incorrect Transaction Amount or Account Number.” This reason code may be used in various circumstances where the dispute is centered on an incorrect transaction amount or the transaction was processed against the wrong account number.
A frequent cause of this chargeback is acquirer adjustment activity following a cash disbursement or debit transaction. This chargeback may apply if the merchant’s acquiring bank processed an adjustment of an ATM cash withdrawal or a Visa Debit transaction authenticated with PIN entry, and the adjustment meets one of the following conditions:
- It includes an invalid or non-matching account number.
- The adjustment was posted more than 10 days after the transaction date to an account that was closed or held non-sufficient funds.
- The adjustment was posted more than 45 days after the transaction date.
- The adjustment was processed multiple times for the same transaction.
This reason code may also apply if the cardholder disputes the adjustment amount or claims that the original transaction was reversed or cancelled.
What Scenarios Might Lead to This Chargeback?
You may see this chargeback follow when adjustments are made to a transaction amount after the transaction was initiated but before it was completed. There may be a legitimate basis for making this adjustment, but if the cardholder was unware of it or did not consent to it, they may well dispute the charge. Of course, it is also quite possible to see a friendly fraud transaction based on a claim that you inappropriately altered the transaction amount.
Acquirer errors may also cause this chargeback to be invoked. If this happens, the acquirer should take responsibility for the costs of the chargeback.
What are the Important Timeframes?
For most disputes, Visa recommends that its cardholders file their claim within 120 calendar days of placing the transaction. The acquirer and/or merchant have 20 calendar days to respond to this chargeback after it is filed.
How Can Merchants Fight this Chargeback Code?
Merchants can fight this chargeback if the basis for it is false or erroneous. This chargeback may include transaction modifiers that require specific forms of evidence.
Your chargeback response should include the following:
- Documents showing the original transaction date and trace number.
- If the chargeback carries the “Transaction Amount Altered” modifier, include one or more of the following:
- Proof that the transaction receipt was not altered.
- Proof that the cardholder agreed to pay the altered amount.
- Proof that per the sales agreement that the customer entered into, the merchant is permitted or required to alter the transaction amount.
- If the chargeback carries the “Transaction Amount Incorrect” modifier, provide a transaction receipt or other documents that show that the correct transaction amount was processed.
How Can Merchants Prevent this Chargeback Code?
Merchants should always proceed with caution whenever the amount of a transaction in progress needs to be adjusted or altered in some way. Unexpected fees, taxes, and other add-ons are a frequent source of frustration for consumers, and even if you technically process a transaction by the book, you can end up with angry customers and friendly fraud chargebacks if you don’t communicate these adjustments and increases clearly and transparently before finalizing the transaction.
The following tips can help you avoid this kind of chargeback:
- Always obtain consent and signed approval from the cardholder whenever you have to adjust a transaction amount.
- Be sure that the transaction amount submitted matches the amount that received authorization approval. If necessary, start over and authorize a brand new transaction.
About Visa Chargeback Reason Codes
Reason codes are alphanumeric codes that provide the justification for granting a chargeback. Pursuant to the Fair Credit Billing Act of 1974, cardholders have the right to dispute unauthorized or erroneous charges and issuing banks must reverse a disputed transaction of the cardholder’s claim is valid.
When a cardholder contacts their issuing bank to dispute a transaction and receive a chargeback, the dispute is assigned a reason code that most closely matches the substance of the cardholder’s claims. The reason code provides the merchant and other stakeholders in the dispute with a concise explanation for why a chargeback has been granted.
Each card network—Visa, Mastercard, American Express, and Discover—defines and maintains their own unique set of reason codes, which are applied to disputes by the banks that issue credit and debit cards under their brands.
Visa specifies 46 reason codes under the categories of Fraud, Authorization, Point-of-Interaction Error, Consumer Disputes, and Processing Errors. Visa uses a numeric scheme for its chargeback reason codes.
Understanding chargeback reason codes is one of the most essential parts of effective chargeback management. Identifying the chargeback reason code and the evidence required to fight it is the first step in chargeback representment, and analyzing your chargeback reason codes can provide you with insights into what types of disputes are causing you the most trouble. With this information, you can determine the root causes of your chargebacks and take action to prevent them from reoccurring.