How Do You Reverse A Credit Card Transaction?

Rates and Fees verified correct on March 31st, 2015

Have you noticed something wrong on your account? Received goods that were not as described? You may be able to get the money back by disputing your transaction.

If you’re ever concerned about the transactions on your credit card or bank account, it is very likely that your bank will give you the opportunity to dispute that transaction. There could be several reasons as to why you might want to dispute a transaction: you never authorised the transaction in the first place, someone has scammed your account or you’ve been charged for the same thing twice.

What’s the process for disputing a transaction?

Transactions you don’t recognise, or didn’t authorise

  • You’ll need to ensure that you’ve kept all the receipts and transaction records received from the retailer or financial institution.
  • Check the date of the transaction to see if you can recall making that purchase. Note that a lot of companies trade under a different name so it’s important to make sure you’ve done a bit of research.
  • If you have an additional cardholder, make sure that they didn’t make the purchase.
  • If the amount seems incorrect, double check to see if any fees or exchange rates were applicable.
  • If you’ve checked all of the above, let your bank know straight away and they can try solve it for you.

What type of transactions can I dispute?

  • Transactions that you don’t recognise or haven’t authorised, or suspect are fraudulent
  • Goods and services you never received
  • Transactions where the amounts are different to when you made the purchase
  • Goods that have arrived, but are not as described
  • Duplicated transactions, or where you have been accidentally charged twice
  • Cancelled debits that are still recurring
  • Good that have arrived, but are defective
  • ATMs that have dispensed the incorrect amount of money

What’s the difference between a chargeback and a disputed transaction?

When you’ve made a purchase using a debit card, your bank can dispute a credit transaction for you from the retailer’s bank. This is called a chargeback, but should only be requested after you’ve tried to get a refund from the retailer yourself.

Usually you’ll need to request the chargeback within 30 days of the transaction and you’ll need to provide your bank with all the information they ask of you.

A disputed transaction is generally a term used for credit cards when there has been a transaction that you don’t think should be there.

How do I lodge a dispute?

To lodge a dispute, please give your bank a call or visit a local branch. Most banks will let you do this online too.

NAB Mailbox > Create secure message > Electronic Transaction dispute – complete the necessary information and submit your request.
St.George Dispute a Transaction’ which is underneath ‘Did you know you can?’ OR
Select the Account on ‘My Accounts’ and underneath ‘Quicklinks’ Select ‘Dispute a Transaction’
  • Go to the ‘View Accounts’ landing page.
  • This is the first page you see when you log on to ANZ Internet Banking.
  • If you cannot locate it, go to the ‘Accounts’ menu and select ‘View Accounts’.
  • Select your card account by clicking on the account name.
  • Click on the ‘Card transaction dispute’ link at the top of the page and follow the steps below.

What happens after my dispute is lodged?

Your bank will send you a confirmation that the dispute has been submitted. You may be required to sign a form and return the information request to your bank within a certain amount of days.

It’s likely that your bank will request and send in documentation for you to complete. This will be used as evidence to support your dispute. Failure to do this could mean that your dispute is unsuccessful.

Below are the stages that you can expect to see your dispute progress through:

Dispute Item Raised Dispute Resolution Credit Dispute Item Resolved
The transaction is being reviewed The amount has been refunded to your account. The transaction is no longer being reviewed.

Frequently asked questions

I ordered a product online, my card was charged but the product never arrived. Now when I got to the website it has been taken down. Can I get my money back?

Yes. Most credit card companies have something called a ‘chargeback’ which they can use to reverse the charges on your account. You should also be refunded any interest you were charged for the transaction. Typically a bank will allow two months for a chargeback from the date of the transaction.

What do I have to do to get a chargeback?

After you have attempted resolution with the merchant and have not gotten the assistance you need, contact your issuing bank. You will need to give them proof that you purchased the goods, possibly proof of a returned item, the date of purchase, and a description of the product or service you requested.

Is there a fee for a chargeback?

Yes. Most credit card companies have something called a ‘chargeback’ which they can use to reverse the charges on your account. You should also be refunded any interest you were charged for the transaction. Typically a bank will allow two months for a chargeback from the date of the transaction.

Could I get a chargeback if I ordered a specific brand of product and received another one instead?

Yes, there are various reasons for a chargeback including a ‘not as described’ rule. Getting the incorrect brand falls under that category.

I paid a deposit on furniture that was never delivered and now the business has gone bankrupt. Am I eligible for a chargeback?

Usually this will qualify for a chargeback depending on the bank under a ‘non-receipt of merchandise’ rule. It also means that if there is no money available to refund your account the credit card company should cover the money and they will become an unsecured creditor of the merchant.

I bought some electronic equipment a few days ago and now have found it cheaper elsewhere, will this qualify for a chargeback?

No, you cannot reverse a credit card transaction just because you found a better deal. You may be eligible for this with the feature of price guarantee on platinum credit cards.

What can I do if the issuing bank refuses a chargeback request?

The first step is to file a complaint with the bank. If you are still not successful you might be able to get the Banking Ombudsman to order them to give you a refund.

Information on resolving credit card disputes

Your issuing bank will get involved to help dispute charges when you need to reverse a credit card transaction. It is best if you can solve any issues with the merchant with whom you made your original transaction. Most of them will work hard to ensure that you are satisfied with the outcome.

About information on resolving credit card disputes

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This page was last modified on 5 November 2014 at 16:46.

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32 Responses to How Do You Reverse A Credit Card Transaction?

  1. Default Gravatar
    John | March 24, 2015

    I purchased some products online ($200) but I haven’t received anything. I have the receipt in my email stating the amount charged. I have tried calling the company, emailing them several times but have not heard back from them. their phone number goes straight to voice mail. The problem is, however, that it has been 4 months since the transaction. What should I do?

    • Staff
      Elizabeth | March 25, 2015

      Hi John,

      Thanks for your question.

      If your purchase never arrived and you’re unable to get in touch with the company, you can submit a dispute with your card provider. Just follow the process outlined on the page above (under the heading ‘How do I lodge a dispute) – if your bank isn’t listed just give them a call to find out about the process.

      I hope this has helped.



  2. Default Gravatar
    ChineseProductsOnline | November 11, 2014

    I purchased a few products online from a store stating it was from the US but were really from China. When I received the products they were faulty and very poor in quality. I’ve asked them for a refund but they have refused saying that there is nothing wrong with the items when obviously there is. Can I dispute this transaction or not?

    • Staff
      Elizabeth | November 12, 2014


      Thanks for your question.

      If the products are not as described, then you may be able to dispute the transaction. You can get in contact with your card provider to discuss your situation and see if a credit card transaction reversal might be an option for you.

      I hope this has helped.



  3. Default Gravatar
    Lawrence | November 5, 2014

    After hiring a car from Europcar they took over R1700.00 in excess from my credit card. As the cost of half a tank of petrol should only be about R250. I can not get any invoice or information of why this large amount was added to the hire charges.

    • Staff
      Elizabeth | November 6, 2014

      Hi Lawrence,

      Thanks for your question.

      You should get in contact with Europcar to find out why you were charged this amount. If it wasn’t a holding charge, you would only be charged an excess if you damaged the vehicle and it was to cover the cost of repairs. Europcar is a reputable company and should be able to explain the charges to you. If you cannot get a refund and the charge was made incorrectly, then you can get in contact with your back to discuss the process of a chargeback.

      I hope this has helped.



  4. Default Gravatar
    Paul | July 16, 2014

    I processed a credit card through Square in Jan and Feb 2014. The customer authorized and signed both times as she agrees with the transactions.
    In April 2014, I received a charge back from my merchant (Square) stating that Master Card charged back these two transactions without contacting me.
    The customers never contacted me either about that.
    How long after a product or a service has been provided can a customer come to reverse transactions? How can I handle this issue? Should I contact a lawyer or get in touch with Master Card as Square is refusing to help.

    • Staff
      Shirley | July 17, 2014

      Hi Paul,

      Thanks for your question and we’re sorry to hear about your situation.

      Please contact your credit card provider first to try and solve the issue. If the issue still hasn’t been resolved, you can contact the Financial Ombudsman Service to raise a complaint.

      The Ombudsman will be able to advise whether you’ll need a lawyer.


  5. Default Gravatar
    Jacqueline | April 12, 2014

    I rent a rug shampoo machine and must put a deposit o down which will be refunded when I return the machine. When I do my accounting books how do I
    reverse the deposit.

    • Staff
      Jacob | April 14, 2014

      Hi, Jacqueline.

      Thanks for your question.

      This is a question best directed towards your accountant. It may be the case the entries listed as deposits are treated differently to other entries on your books.

  6. Default Gravatar
    Prashant | February 16, 2014

    I have lost 4000 dollars in a fraud. There was a man who told me he would like to rent my apartment after viewing the add on gumtree. I asked him for advance payment and he sent me 2000 dollars in my account. He said he did it by mistake and I should send him his money back by western union. I did so the next day on 14th Feb 2014. On 17th February , I saw that he Reversed the transaction ( reversal of fraudulent payment). It am in a bit SHOCK. also my student account is also showing 1900 overdraft. I used my new debit card to withdraw money at Westpac and sent him the details. PLEASE HELP Me. Thanks.

    • Staff
      Jacob | February 17, 2014

      Hi, Prashant.

      Please see our page on credit card fraud and scams list of scams and information on how to deal with the situation.

      If you can’t the information you’re looking for on this page, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us again.

      Thanks for your question.

  7. Default Gravatar
    felicia | October 29, 2013

    Hi! My husband made a transaction with his 2 credit card and only to find out that the company he has paid to is a scam he called the bank same day and they said it hasn’t reflected yet at the bank but he must wait 5 days then he can cancel again or something. I want to know if it’s possible will that company won’t be able to get the money from the bank and what should we do. Thank you in advance.

    • Staff
      Jacob | October 29, 2013

      Hi Felicia.

      Thanks for your question.

      Your husband may be able to request a charge back on his credit card. This is where the bank will refund the money. The best course of action is to continue the communication with your card provider. Among other things, if you have paid for goods or services and the merchant has failed to deliver, you’re entitled to get your money back. There are some circumstances where a charge back may be refused, you can read more about this on this page.

      I hope this helps.

  8. Default Gravatar
    bob | August 12, 2013

    I ordered a product online with the checkout – then after payment received – I got an email later in day that I needed to pay more postage. I can’t afford any more and said to just cancel order and refund. If they refuse to cancel, can I speak to the bank about reversing the payment. I don’t think it’s professional or ethical to be adding postage fees after the transaction is complete and finalized. Can I get a refund on that through the bank?

    • Staff
      Jacob | August 13, 2013

      Hi Bob.

      Your first point of call should be to contact the merchant in question and get them to cancel the transaction. Provided that don’t have a ‘no-refunds’ policy, they should be able to give you your money back. If there are still issues, you will then need to contact your issuing bank and inform them of the situation.

      A lender will issue a charge back when the promised good or service has not be delivered or has been delivered in a condition other than the advertised state. You can find out more information about credit card chargebacks here.

      Thanks for your question.

  9. Default Gravatar
    Brian | August 11, 2013

    Hi Jacob,

    I purchased 12 tickets to an Australian music festival for myself, brothers and our group of friends. After I had been charged almost 2,300 I realised I had booked them to the wrong city. The city is interstate and there is no way we can afford to travel there.

    I feel like I am at breaking point as I now read that the promoter does not refund tickets

    Would a charge back be something that would successfully resolve this issue?

    Kind regards

    • Staff
      Jacob | August 12, 2013

      Hi Brian.

      Contact the merchant directly. Speak to them and explain your situation and see if you can come to an arrangement.

      If this fails, then contact the card issuing bank or lender. They may be able to carry out a charge-back. Charge-backs are usually reserved for instances where the goods or services are faulty or never arrives, so an instance where you bought the wrong tickets is more of a grey area. Please contact the merchant and the card issuer.



  10. Default Gravatar
    jay | August 2, 2013

    Hi Jacob,

    I have a charge of £104 on my statement which I don’t recall and I think its been taken fraudulently.

    How long will it take to process a charge back and whats the time frame on getting funds back, Its from a paypal merchant. Thanks

    • Staff
      Jacob | August 2, 2013

      Hi Jay. Thanks for your question. It could take anywhere between a week and month depending on how long it takes the lender to carry out their investigation after you reported the instance of the fraud. The more information you can provide the organisation who is carrying out the investigation, the quicker the process. Contact your card provider and your card issuer. You can find out more information about credit card fraud on this page. Jacob.

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