Sometimes, you might experience problems with goods or services you’ve bought – for example they could be poor quality, or you may not have received them at all.
Your bank or lender may be able to help with a refund, repair or replacement if you paid for the goods or services using:
- a credit or debit card
- a fixed sum loan
- certain catalogue shopping accounts
They could do this by raising a chargeback or considering a Section 75 claim.
But if you think your bank or lender hasn’t done enough to help, or hasn’t followed the right process, you can complain to us.
The guidance below is general information about chargeback and Section 75, along with what we consider when we look at complaints.
What issues might there be with goods and services?
Tickets for events and travel, cosmetic treatment, home appliances, kitchen installations and educational courses are just some of the purchases involved in the complaints we see.
When things go wrong with goods and services such as these, we’ve heard comments like:
- I’m unhappy with what I was told about the goods or services before I bought them
- goods I paid for are of poor quality or defective
- the services I paid for weren’t carried out with reasonable care and skill
- I bought something that turned out to be unfit for its intended purpose
- the item I paid for never turned up, or the service I was expecting was cancelled and I didn’t get refunded
- I’m unhappy with how the supplier tried to put things right
- my purchase was cancelled or disrupted because of the Covid-19 pandemic
It’s likely that your bank or lender hasn’t supplied the goods or services. But as detailed above, if you paid using a credit or debit card, a loan, or certain catalogue shopping accounts, they might be able to help by raising a chargeback or considering a Section 75 claim.
Your bank or lender should be able to explain Section 75 and chargeback to you, but it’s also useful to know how these work for yourself. This guidance is designed to help you resolve any issues that you come across.
This page can help if you have problems like those mentioned above. But if your issue relates to a travel service that has gone wrong, or a car you bought using a car finance agreement like hire purchase or conditional sale, check the information below.
You can find information on the Civil Aviation Authority’s (CAA) website about claiming a refund if your travel company has stopped trading and they’re covered by ATOL or ABTA.
You might be covered by your travel insurance. Find out more about complaints involving travel disruption.
You can still speak to your bank or lender to see if you can make a Section 75 or chargeback claim, especially if there’s no ATOL or ABTA cover, or if you’ve incurred further costs that aren’t covered by ATOL or ABTA.
The information on this page explains how we can help if you’re not happy with the response you get from your bank or lender.
Sometimes, people come to us with a complaint about a car supplied under a car finance agreement like hire purchase or conditional sale.
The complaint could be about the car being faulty, or the finance agreement itself.
This page doesn’t cover disputes like these, but you can read more about problems with car finance here.
Chargeback and Section 75 claims
What is a chargeback?
A chargeback lets you challenge and ‘claw back’ payments made using a debit or credit card. You can only do this in certain circumstances. Your bank or lender will ask for supporting evidence before starting the chargeback process.
Your credit or debit card will likely be with one of the main card schemes – Visa, Mastercard and American Express. Each will have different chargeback rules, so check them with your bank or lender.
A bank or lender doesn’t have to raise a chargeback. But if valid reasons exist, it can be good practice for them to do so.
These are often valid reasons for raising a chargeback:
- the goods or services received don’t match the description
- the goods never turned up or the supplier never provided the service
- the goods arrived but were broken or otherwise defective
- the supplier says they were processing a refund, but you never got one
- the supply of goods or services was cancelled in line with the supplier’s policy, but no refund was paid
Other chargeback reasons might relate to a dispute over the nature of the transaction, such as the amount charged or whether the payment was authorised. Find more about our approach to complaints involving disputed transactions.
If a first attempt at chargeback isn’t successful, it might be reasonable for your bank or lender to take things further. You may need to give more supporting information to your bank or lender to help them challenge any defence raised by the supplier of the goods or services.
When considering a complaint about how the bank handled a chargeback, we’ll usually look at whether it was fair not to raise, or discontinue, a chargeback.
We’ll look at how well they explained the process, including what information they asked for and any time limits and restrictions.
Ultimately, chargebacks can fail and it’s not always reasonable to raise one at all. We’d still expect the financial business to make you aware of the situation, helping you understand why.
Your bank or lender should be able to let you know what to provide, but you can read more about types of supporting evidence here.
You often need to show that you’ve tried to resolve the problem with the supplier of the goods and services. If your bank or lender asks you for further information, it’s important to get this to them quickly – keeping the time limits below in mind.
You usually have around 120 days to raise a chargeback about goods or services. This might be from the date you expected to receive them but they weren't provided, or from the date you got something that was defective or not as described.
Time limits might be longer or shorter depending on the circumstances. This means it’s important to follow problems up promptly and speak to your bank or lender to find out what the relevant time limits are. If your claim isn’t in time, you might not be able to get your money back through the chargeback process.
What is Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974?
If you used a credit card or point of sale loan to buy goods or services, then the transaction could be covered under Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974.
This lets you raise a claim against your bank or lender for a breach of contract or misrepresentation by the supplier of goods or services.
Section 75 applies if:
- you paid some or all the cost by credit card, with a point-of-sale loan, or with certain catalogue shopping accounts
- the cash price of the goods or services is more than £100 but not more than £30,000
It’s important to note that:
- it's the cash price of the goods or services that matters, not what you paid on your credit card or loan – for example, Section 75 applies even if you only made part of the payment using credit
- where the cash price is over £30,000, a lender might still be responsible for what has happened under Section 75a. If you think this applies to you, mention it to your bank or lender so they can look into it
Section 75 doesn’t apply if:
- you paid with a debit card or a charge card, although your card provider may still be able to help through the chargeback process
- the credit was given under an overdraft or general-purpose bank loan
- you paid using cash, credit card cheque or a bank transfer
When looking at a Section 75 claim, the bank or lender needs to work out whether Section 75 applies. Then they should see whether there’s been a breach of contract or misrepresentation by the supplier of goods or services.
How you made your purchase, and the parties involved, might impact your Section 75 claim. That’s because there needs to be a clear agreement between you as the customer, the supplier and your bank or lender. This is described in the law as a ‘debtor-creditor-supplier’ agreement.
Whether this is in place isn’t always straightforward. Your bank or lender should be able to help, but if you’re unhappy with how they've looked at the situation, you could raise a complaint.
Section 75 is part of your wider consumer rights under the Consumer Credit Act 1974.
Your bank or lender should consider the contract that was agreed between the parties, including relevant consumer law. This is likely to include the Consumer Rights Act 2015.
How to use Section 75 or chargeback
When you contact your bank or lender:
- explain that you want them to help resolve an issue with something you paid for using a card or loan they provided
- mention that you’d like them to consider the chargeback and Section 75 process
- make sure you have supporting information about your dispute
Having the following information to hand might be helpful, if available and relevant to your claim:
- receipts and invoices, or other proof of payment
- contracts and terms and conditions
- marketing materials, such as leaflets, or screenshots of information about the goods or services you purchased
- correspondence about the goods or services you purchased, such as emails
- photos or videos of the goods or services you paid for, which indicate that they weren’t as expected
- independent assessments, reports, or expert opinion, if needed
The bank or lender should look at whether they can raise a chargeback or a Section 75 claim. If you’re unhappy with their response, you can complain to them. If you’re still not satisfied, we may be able to help.
When might Section 75 and chargeback not apply?
If you’ve used a payment method that Section 75 and chargeback don’t apply to, your bank or lender may not be able to help.
But sometimes the lender and the supplier are the same, for example under a rent-to-own agreement like hire purchase. In those situations, the lender could be directly responsible for problems with the goods or services. They might also be responsible for inaccurate things a third party, like a broker, said about the goods or services.
You can still contact the lender to ask if they can help with a problem with the product you were supplied with using these types of finance. If you’re unhappy with their response, you could raise a complaint.
Knowing your rights and the relevant law
Whether your bank has liability under Section 75 or because they supplied the goods directly, they should consider the agreed contract for the goods or services. This includes relevant consumer law that might imply terms into the contract.
The Consumer Rights Act 2015 is often relevant. This sets out the protection that consumers have when buying goods and services. For example, it says that goods should be of ‘satisfactory quality’ and services should be performed with ‘reasonable care and skill’.
There are also other relevant laws that are specific to certain situations, such as purchases of package travel holidays. Your bank or lender should be able to tell you which laws apply to your situation, but if you’re unhappy with their response, you can raise a complaint.
Types of complaint we see
Sometimes, you might not agree with how your bank or lender handled the situation. People usually contact us because they’re unhappy with their bank or lender’s response, or the way they handled the claim.
When we look at your situation, we consider how your bank or lender responded. You might have wanted a repair, refund, replacement or other compensation. But the bank or lender could have:
- unfairly rejected a Section 75 claim, saying they're not liable for the quality of the goods or services
- not pursued a chargeback for you when it would have been good practice to do so
- not investigated properly or considered all the evidence
- taken too long to investigate a claim, or made mistakes that negatively impacted you
How to complain
If you’re unhappy with how your bank or lender handled a chargeback or Section 75 claim, you should complain to them first. Your bank or lender will look into it and respond.
If you’re unhappy with their response, or they don’t respond within eight weeks, you can come to us. We’ll check it’s something we can deal with, and if it is, we’ll investigate.
Find out more about how to complain.
What we look at
We’ll look at how the bank or lender handled your issue about the goods or services, investigating whether it should have done more. We’ll consider relevant chargeback scheme rules, Section 75 and your consumer rights.
Often, we’ll weigh up the available evidence and information such as:
- what's been said by all the parties about the goods or services in question
- paperwork, photos, videos, correspondence and – if needed – reports or expert opinion
- the law – including the Consumer Rights Act 2015 – and industry guidance about the supply of goods or services
Putting things right
Depending on what's gone wrong, and how the bank or lender has already tried to put things right, we may tell them to:
- refund you, either in part or in full
- arrange to repair or replace the goods
- arrange for the services to be carried out properly
- refund interest, charges, or repayments
- collect the goods at no cost to you
- do nothing, if we think they’ve done enough to resolve the issue
We may also suggest that your bank or lender pays you compensation for any trouble or upset. If you’ve incurred costs relating to the problem, we'll consider whether it's reasonable for you to be reimbursed these costs.
If you're in financial difficulty, there are organisations and services available to offer advice and support:
Information for financial businesses
If you’re a bank or lender looking for information to help you resolve complaints, read more on handling complaints about goods and services bought with debit cards and loans.
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