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MasterCard New ChargeBack Policy
There is a catch...

 1:40 pm on Oct 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

Effective October 1st, 2006, MasterCard has set out some new rules & regulations for their Chargeback Policy.
One of the new measures is that they have increased the number of allowed chargebacks to 50 and on the other side have decreased the ratio to 0.5%. Merchant will be fined as soon as they have over 50 chargebacks AND are over the 0.5% limit, which means most of us will be fine in the end.

However, one of the things that struck me the most was the following:

MasterCard will consider a credit (refund) as a chargeback if MasterCard believes, that the credit is generated to avoid the application of these rules, such as for ANY of the following situations:
- As substitute for chargebacks
- If merchants fail to provide satisfactory customer services
- If credits are equal to or greater than chargeback rates
- As a settlement to resolve fraud or customer service issues

Each credit processed will be fined with a recovery fee of USD 25.00

Isn't this where a credit is normally issued for in the 1st place? Or at least in 95% of the cases.

It's becoming more and more obvious to me that MasterCard is clearly earning money for b*llsh*t reasons. I was on one hand very happy to hear that they have increased the allowed chargebacks from 15 to 50 but after reading this credit penalty fee, it seems they have changed one bad thing for another.

How do you guys feel about this?
Is this a normal procedure?

I have never paid for any credit as far as I know.

[edited by: Miklo at 1:44 pm (utc) on Oct. 12, 2006]



 3:29 pm on Oct 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

The only time you have to pay for the credit fee is if you fight it an lose. 99.99% of the time we issue a credit after we see we have been had to avoid this charge. A few times we have fought it and won and lost.

Course you get a 1.5 increase in chage on the refund as well so if you have refunded a customer after the card has been processed and the batch as been processed you have indeed paid for a credit.

2.5 process fee and a 4% refund fee so on a bad order or refunded order you actually pay 6% plus .25 per so add another .50 in there as well.

We are getting were we are very careful on this due to the actual cost you really never see till the end of the month when you are charged for processing fees.


 9:39 am on Oct 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

Yes, normally we only loose the initial commission fee and per transaction fee on the sale once we have credited the amount back to the customer.

According to the new regulations, MasterCard will charge you 25 USD for every credit if THEY believe the credit is generated to avoid a possible chargeback.

This, to me, sounds ridiculous.

wired in asia

 10:31 am on Oct 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

Sorry, pls clarify.

Master charges who? The Merchant or the Merchant Bank?

As far as I know we have no agreement with Master, but rather with our Merchant Bank, who in turn agreed to abide by the regulations set by Master.



 2:59 pm on Oct 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

"According to the new regulations, MasterCard will charge you 25 USD for every credit if THEY believe the credit is generated to avoid a possible chargeback"

I don't think this is correct do you have a link to go to to read this as I haven't recieved this or seen this?

Corey Bryant

 5:43 pm on Oct 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

The issuing bank will actually charge the fee which will then the acquiring bank who charges the merchant account provider who will charge the merchant.

If the issuing bank has issued the chargeback, chances are the fee will still be there. Some processors also charge a another fee as well on top of the chargeback fee


Corey Bryant

 6:41 pm on Oct 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

Just remembered the other term - retrieval fee. Some providers also charge this as well to take the money back from the merchant



 1:49 pm on Oct 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

Not to ramble, but the CC companies make it a scary venture for merchants already. The pendulum is already in the consumer's behavior, and anything that makes it further swing is a bit scary. I get this question every day from potential shopping cart customers "What if a customer decides to do a chargeback, or they want their money back? What do I do?".

Back on topic: I think that if what you said is true about the credit card company ... if they believe ... is a bad thing.

It's not about giving a credit to avoid a chargeback, its about CUSTOMER SERVICE. If you, like most companies take your customer's happiness seriously, then if they feel they have not received a good product in exchange for the price paid, and want their money back, unless there is a really good reason to not refund them, you will. You certainly don't want one unhappy customer telling 100 about your bad customer service and product.

The credit card company would certainly have lost more revenue opportunity if you as a merchant won't give a refund because it looks like its to avoid looking like a chargeback and then that customer goes and tells 100 other customers to not do business with you.


 2:58 pm on Oct 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

That's exactly my point.

We have received information from this from our processor in a special information bulletin regarding the new MasterCard Excessive Chargeback Programme and I almost overread it until a colleague of mine showed it to me.

We are talking about refunds here, not chargebacks.

MasterCard will consider a credit as a chargeback in the following situations:

1. blabla
2. blabla
3. blabla
4. As a settlement to resolve fraud or customer service issues. (!)

So, in general, if a customer contacts you and they tell you they have been charged by you and their card has been misused and stolen and you say, okay, well, I'll give you a refund (of course, after you have made sure that it is in fact a fraudulent order) MasterCard can still say to you: Sorry, we are charging you 25 USD for this refund.

You can only imagine how much MasterCard earns in one day by just processing refunds!


 10:13 pm on Oct 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

If the law allowed us to charge an extra 2-3% on credit cards (or give cash discounts) like most other countries can do, we would do in a second.

Right now the CC companies have merchants over a barrel - but if things keep getting worse, maybe Google will save us all and come out with something new.......


 6:39 pm on Oct 20, 2006 (gmt 0)

As much as I hated to, as much as I fear their "different brand" of a pointed stick in the eye, I've switched to PayPal Payments Pro. I'm pleased so far.

What are we supposed to do? When a person calls and asks a QUESTION to M/C/Visa, they institute a chargeback.

((Sigh))So few hours in the day, so many ways to get shafted.


 4:17 am on Oct 22, 2006 (gmt 0)

The funny part is that they (MasterCard and the like) don't really care about fraud. The merchant pays for it, so it's a win win situation for them. I once tried to report a fraudulent order paid by a compromised credit card and their customer service people acted like I was from another planet. Questions like "Shouldn't the real card owner know there card has been comprised", were ignored. They just said "Don't worry about it".


 8:07 am on Oct 22, 2006 (gmt 0)

> of course, after you have made sure that it is in fact a fraudulent order

It sounds like MasterCard wants to make more money. Seems very greedy and evil of MasterCard to charge such a fee when we have already lost the product we shipped, the cost of shipping, handling, time, and the order total originally paid to us. I think that's penalty enough.


 2:34 pm on Oct 24, 2006 (gmt 0)

Yes, MC and VISA regard refunds over a certain limit like a chargeback. Be careful when you compute your chargeback rate.

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