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Chase: Dispute of fraudulent charge did not end in my favor

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Anonymous
Not applicable

Chase: Dispute of fraudulent charge did not end in my favor

Hi everyone,

 
I have a story to tell which is half a request for advice and half a rant about the frustrating situation I’ve found myself in. If you don’t feel like reading it, the TL;DR is: Early last month, one of my Chase cards was used for a fraudulent transaction of a little over $25. I received an alert on my phone for the transaction, so I was able to start the dispute process immediately. Spoiler: Chase doesn’t believe me, and they’re trying to make me pay for it.
 
Here are the details…
 
Background on my credit card behavior, which might or might not be relevant: I’ve had credit cards with Chase for about 8 years, plus a checking account and a savings account. I use my cards for everything and typically spend $1,500 - $3,000 per month across all cards, and I do not carry a balance. My overall utilization is always under 10%, and usually closer to 2 or 3 percent. I have never missed a payment. All of this makes me think I should not be considered a risky customer.
 
During that time, I have experienced credit card fraud probaby about 3 to 5 times. This has always been pure fraud, never an attempt on my part to receive compensation for goods or services that were missing or unsatisfactory. In other words, I have absolutely never abused the dispute system or even pushed the limits of what it’s meant for. Of course, there’s no way I can prove that here, so you’ll just have to take my word for it for the purpose of this topic.
 
The most recent time a fraudulent charge occurred was last month. At the time, I didn’t think too much of it, because it was for a small amount, and I’ve learned over the years that CC companies want to do their best to keep you comfortable, making the fraud dispute process as smooth as possible. At first, their handling of it seemed pretty typical: They said they were going to remove the charge. They also mentioned that there had been a (fortunately) declined charge for several hundred dollars on the same card around the same time. It happens that this was an account I don’t use very often, so I asked them to go ahead and close it too, which they did. And that was that. (So I thought.)
 
For good measure, I even looked up the phone number of the store where the card was used and spoke with the manager, who kindly took some time to review his security footage and found images of the people who had paid using my card. He sent me screen captures, which I still have. In case it needs saying: These people were not anybody I know or recognize.
 
A couple weeks later, I received a letter from Chase saying that they had reviewed my fraud claim and that I would be responsible for the transaction, with the reason: “You received benefit from this transaction.”
 
Let me remind you that this was not a transaction I had any part in. It wasn’t that I was unhappy with something and wanted to get my money back. It wasn’t a friend or family member using the card. It was fraud.
 
At this point, I was angrier with Chase than I have ever been—which doesn’t really do justice to just how angry I was, because the truth is Chase has always been fantastic for me prior to this. I spoke to a number of representatives, both from the regular customer service dept. and the fraud dept. and explained everything I knew.
 
An interesting detail that seems to be important here: One of the representatives I originally spoke with told me that the impacted card had recently been activated after one with an updated exp. date was sent out to me, and the just-activated card had been physically present for the transaction. For them to say this as if it mattered, I assume they must have meant that it was a chip read, because “card present” for a magnetic card doesn’t really mean much. This kind of caught me off guard because I couldn’t immediately think of any explanation for this. At first I just told them all I could, which was that I couldn’t think of any explanation for what they were seeing. Maybe that honest answer doomed me.
 
When dealing with CS reps, I tried everything I could to get them to remove the charge, including asking them to simply remove it as a general courtesy for me as a customer, regardless of whether they agreed it was fraudulent. None of this was effective. They even told me that the fact that the account was closed meant it was impossible for them to issue statement credits. The way Chase suddenly went from seemingly top-notch service to stubbornly blocking every attempt to recover such a small amount of money came as a bit of a shock.
 
However, the fraud team agreed to reopen the investigation and said it could take up to 15 days. Well, at that point I had had enough of Chase for a while and decided to stop calling them, and just wait for their investigation to wrap up.
 
But, after thinking about the sequence of events that led up to this, a possible explanation for the “card present” transaction started to form in my mind, which I now believe is very likely accurate: I did receive the updated card, and I did activate it and put it in my wallet, even though I don’t normally keep that card in my wallet (again, a rarely used one). When I did this, I didn’t immediately destroy the original card because I knew it was in a safe place and I could destroy it later. Then, the updated card was physically lost or stolen out of my wallet, without my knowledge. Because I normally don’t keep that card in my wallet, its absence didn’t raise any red flags for me. And because I had forgotten about having received an updated card, the one I destroyed when I closed the account was (unknown to me at the time) the old card. This last part about destroying the old card is definitely accurate, even though I don’t have knowledge of exactly how or when the new card left my possession, other than that it was shortly after activation.
 
I called Chase up again and explained my new theory. I was careful to make it clear that I was not certain that this was what had happened, but I believed it was the only explanation that made sense given their claim about the card being physically present. This was not an attempt to speed the dispute resolution along, just an extra bit of info for them, which they noted.
 
Fast forward to mid-July: I received another letter from Chase in which they said: “We confirmed that the transaction(s) is valid.” and “We assure you that we researched your fraud claim thoroughly.”
 
I’m done being angry at Chase. I already closed all of my remaining Chase accounts after their first letter, and now I just want this to be over—BUT, I am still having a hard time bringing myself to pay for this fraudulent charge. Has anyone else gone through something like this, and do you have any advice for next steps (even if those next steps are “give up and pay”)? I really want to be able to continue trusting credit cards as a “safe” payment method, but this is making it difficult.
 
Thanks for reading!
Message 1 of 33
32 REPLIES 32
TSlop
Valued Contributor

Re: Chase: Dispute of fraudulent charge did not end in my favor

I have not had this happen with Chase, but I did have 2 fraud issues with BoA that got resolved. The first was mostly hassle free (2 phone calls), and the second was basically automatic.

 

The first was a charge that MAY have been fraudulent, but I wasn't 100% sure. It was a charge for a vendor that I visited in January 2020, but a charge came through in August 2020 for that vendor. It was $12. I called the fraud department, told them it MIGHT be legitimate or it MIGHT be fraud, and that I couldn't fathom why it was about 8 months behind if it was legitimate. I also informed them I wasn't sure if I used cash or a card, and if I used a card, I don't know which I used. Anyway, I caught it pending, and they made me wait until it posted before calling again to see if there was any additional information attached to the charge. After it posted, we couldn't determine it was from January, and they only asked if I used that vendor in August, and I said no, so they credited me the $12 and kept the card open. This was on my BoA PR card.

 

The second was a few months ago on my BoA CR card. I randomly got a fraud text message about a $600+ charge at some online company in India. I wasn't sure if the text was real, so I logged into my BoA account, and the card was locked and it asked about that charge. It had me confirm online what charge was fraudulent and what my most recent legitimate charge was. After answering those questions, it automatically closed the card and sent me a new one. I would have caught the charge in my daily checks, but their system caught it before I looked. No hassles on that one.

 

Being that the charge is so low in your case, I'm surprised they are fighting it so hard. My first BoA fraud was fuzzy if it was actual fraud, and they still credited it to me. I haven't had a fraud issue yet with Chase, so I hope it is smoother than this if I ever do.

Message 2 of 33
Anonymous
Not applicable

Re: Chase: Dispute of fraudulent charge did not end in my favor

That stinks and I'm surprised they aren't making this right.


That being said I believe federal law limits your liability to $50 in case of unauthorized charges which this is under.


You can try emailing the CEO or posting the issue on Twitter, sometimes those teams do more than the general customer service number.

 

If none of that works, I personally would pay it as it's under $50 and not worth the credit hit or potential judgement, though I doubt they would go that far for such a small amount.

 

 

Message 3 of 33
FalconSteve
Valued Contributor

Re: Chase: Dispute of fraudulent charge did not end in my favor

Contact the CFPB

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Message 4 of 33
longtimelurker
Epic Contributor

Re: Chase: Dispute of fraudulent charge did not end in my favor


@Anonymous wrote:
 
 
I’m done being angry at Chase. I already closed all of my remaining Chase accounts after their first letter, and now I just want this to be over—BUT, I am still having a hard time bringing myself to pay for this fraudulent charge. Has anyone else gone through something like this, and do you have any advice for next steps (even if those next steps are “give up and pay”)? I really want to be able to continue trusting credit cards as a “safe” payment method, but this is making it difficult.
 
Thanks for reading!

Yes, this is tough!  Have you considered filing a police report?   If Chase is making you pay, you are then the victim of the fraud, and if you have the footage of the (mis)use, that could be used.   On the other hand, "give up and pay" for $25 is also attractive, if you don't want to waste more of your time, and you have already severed the relationship.

 

It sounds as if Chase believes the use of the chip ends all discussion, which is strange.    In the UK, people had the same experience with chip&pin transactions ("if the correct PIN was entered, it was either you or someone authorized by you, or you had carelessly let the PIN be discovered, such as by writing it next to the card" type of thing) and were unable to get believed, until some flaws were identified.   Your explanation of theft of the physical card makes much more sense than that!

Message 5 of 33
Anonymous
Not applicable

Re: Chase: Dispute of fraudulent charge did not end in my favor

@TSlop Yeah, my experience with issues like this in the past has always been positive, and I think I developed a bit of a false sense of security, believing that it would always be handled the same in the future. I'm just glad it was for such a small amount.

 

I do think Chase is one of the better CC companies overall for customer service based on my past experiences with Chase, Wells Fargo, Capital One, and American Express. And I don't expect most people would get as unlucky as I did here. But just for me personally, I don't see how I could feel OK about keeping any Chase accounts active after going through this, whatever the reasons were.

Message 6 of 33
Anonymous
Not applicable

Re: Chase: Dispute of fraudulent charge did not end in my favor

@longtimelurker RE: police report—I haven't done this, and in the past I never felt it was necessary either, because the CC dispute process was so streamlined and seemingly weighted in my favor. I appreciate the reminder, because that might be exactly what they need to be able to verify that I'm taking it seriously and checking off all the boxes. I'd hate to waste LE time over such a trivial amount, but a crime is a crime.

 

I did call the fraud team back and they offered to reopen the dispute again, which I was not expecting. They didn't seem very interested in the photos last time even though I mentioned that I had them, but this time the person I spoke with requested them, and I sent them over. We'll see how it goes.

 

Thanks to everyone for the replies!

Message 7 of 33
Anonymous
Not applicable

Re: Chase: Dispute of fraudulent charge did not end in my favor

If it's not resolved in your favor this time, make sure you file a complaint with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, CFPB. I bet Chase will change their tune once you do. 

Message 8 of 33
a1canesfan
Established Member

Re: Chase: Dispute of fraudulent charge did not end in my favor

I'd recommend filing a complaint with the CFPB now.  It won't take you more than 10-15 minutes on line, and Chase will receive it through their portal within 24 hours and be required to respond to them within 15 days (or give reason why they need an extension if they need more time).  The added scrutiny of having to respond to you through a federal regulator vs just making you go away satisfied over such a small amount will weigh into their decision regarding this latest investigation they're reopening.  

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Message 9 of 33
uoyankee
New Contributor

Re: Chase: Dispute of fraudulent charge did not end in my favor

I've had a few claims over two decades of credit card use.   I've never had isssues with anyone other than Amex, which oddly everyone says is the best.  BofA and either Capital One or Citi (thinking back nearly two decades on closed accounts) I never had an issue with them.  

the Amex claim was similar to yours that it was so glaringly obvious to me but they just flat out refused to do anything.  I almost CFPB'ed them over it but decided not to burn that relationship, but I'm still annoyed.  

Message 10 of 33
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