How to Dispute a Charge on Your Credit Card Statement
In the mail, you see your credit card statement for the previous month. You open the bill and to your surprise, there is an item that was charged to your card, yet you never received the product or service. What do you do?
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau recommends that you contact the credit card company and let them know about the issue right away. You should also check your credit card agreement to review your rights about unauthorized charges. You can usually find this agreement on your credit card company’s website.
In addition to calling your credit card company, you must also send a letter to the card company as well within 60 calendar days after the disputed charge appears on your bill to protect your rights.
If you have already paid the bill, you can still dispute it, but you most likely will not get the money back until the credit card company has investigated and found in your favor. If this is the case, the credit card company must remove the charge from your bill. If they find that the charge is legitimate, they must tell you why in writing, along with how much you owe and when the payment is due.
If the charge you are disputing is due to the product being defective, you will go through a different process that is stated in your agreement as well.
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After receiving your letter, the credit card company has 30 days to send you a letter acknowledging that you are disputing a charge on your account. They have to complete their investigation within two complete billing cycles of receiving notification of the dispute (which is about two months) and cannot take more than 90 days. Also during this investigative time, the credit card company cannot charge you interest for the item or service in question.
If this should happen to you, it will take time to correct but you should be told if your disputed charge was removed from your statement or that the charge stands and the reason(s) why the credit card company came to that conclusion.
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