An Open Letter to Credit Card Holder’s that do Chargebacks through their Issuing Banks/American Express & Discover. Also to the issuing banks that allow it.

Ticketbrokers are often their target.

Filing chargebacks is not a license to steal!

I despise people that knowingly commit “Friendly Fraud” That is they file a chargeback knowing they received tickets or other merchandise as promised and are just trying to weasel out of paying. To those that do are you aware that the victimized merchant can file felony theft charges against you and you could see real jail time?

Many cardholders think if they file a chargeback claim the card issuer reimburses them. Not so-it’s the merchant that sold you the merchandise in good faith. Whether or not a chargeback is filed often depends on the issuing bank. My bank BMO Harris for example is very strict & does not allow frivolous chargebacks. I have filed one chargeback in the 9 years I’ve been with them and I was very justified in doing so, but they made me jump through hoops to prove that I was right and that I had first tried to settle with the merchant. Unfortunately many banks are not like this. They have low level staff answering chargeback requests that have no business expertise or knowledge of the marketplace. You can almost hear Sam or Sally Newperson saying “You want to file a chargeback? Oh goodie that sounds like fun-let’s do one!”

So now we have a bank who’s cardholder went on a legitimate website as an example, picked out exactly what they wanted, clicked on acceptance of all terms & conditions, paid with their credit card and received exactly what they wanted and then want to do a chargeback because of some misunderstanding, petty complaint or worse yet so they can wind up getting the merchant’s product for free. In most cases they have never even attempted to call and discuss their alleged grievance with the merchant.

Cardholders have to realize that just because they paid for example $600 for an item that isn’t the profit for the merchant. To use Ticketbrokers as an example again they may have paid almost or even over $600 for that ticket and are often operating on a razor this profit or at times a loss.

Cardholders please stop stealing from merchants! Courts please order that MC/Visa/Amex/Discover have to mandate fair handling of chargeback complaints by all card issuers! Merchants start pressing felony charges against offending cardholders and put them in jail with the rest of the thieves!