Help with Fraudulent Credit Card Charges
By Danielle Buffardi

If it has never happened to you then consider yourself very lucky. For others, finding a charge on our credit card statement that we didn't sign for can be overwhelming. Fraudulent charges can be unauthorized charges on your credit card bill, charges in the wrong amount, duplicate charges, even online purchases that you didn't authorize. Here are a few steps to help when dealing with the credit card companies concerning unauthorized or fraudulent charges.

The first step is to save your receipts. As the adage states, luck favors the prepared, therefore, always save your receipts for everything that you purchase. This can be a tedious task but doing so will help ensure that you have absolute proof of your purchase; this includes the date and time it was made, the retailer from which you purchase the merchandise from, and the exact amount that you signed for. Purchase a decent sized plastic bin and store all of your receipts for at least two years, after which you should shred them to further reduce the risk of getting your identity stolen. Saving receipts allows for you to be able to produce copies when the credit card companies ask for proof of your original purchase.

The second step is to contact your credit card company right away. Call your credit card company immediately when you suspect any type of unauthorized, duplicate, or fraudulent activity. Explain to them your situation and give them the charge amount that you authorize versus the charge amount that is appearing on your credit card bill. If you didn't authorize the charge at the time tell them that, the credit card company will most likely cancel your current card and send you a brand-new one with a new account number. Make a copy of the original receipt if the matter is concerning an overcharge or duplicate charge and mail or fax it over to your credit card company. Consumers are protected by the Fair Credit Billing Act; it's a federal law that states you are only responsible for $50 worth of any unauthorized charges. The FCBA also protects consumers against duplicate charges or unreceived merchandise that is billed to your credit card. If you are not familiar with the FCBA then conduct some research online concerning the law and become well-versed in its parameters. It's there to help consumers just like yourself.

The third step is to get updated copies of your credit report. Once you've gone through the steps to report unauthorized credit card charges to your account, it would be wise to get current copies of your credit report to ensure that the problem has thoroughly been taking care of with the credit reporting agencies. Any time you have fraudulent activity on your credit card bill you are entitled to a free copy of your credit report from the three major credit reporting agencies: Equifax, Trans Union, and Experian. Call them and explain your case and they will mail you a current copy of your credit report.
Stay Connected
Of Interest:
Sitemap | Editorial TeamCalculator Disclaimer | Balance Transfer Calculator