How to Cancel Payments Made on a Visa

There are plenty of reasons you may want to stop a payment on your Visa® card while it's still marked as "pending." Whether the vendor charged the wrong amount, you believe the charge is fraudulent or you received low-quality goods, you may want to tell Visa not to approve the payment. However, it's not always so simple. You may have to allow the charge to proceed, and then talk to your financial institution to get your money back. Protect your finances by learning about stopping and disputing payments.

Handling Pending Payments

Each bank has a policy for canceling charges, but they vary by the type of account, the charge in question and other factors. In most cases, banks cannot stop a payment once it is pending. However, most financial institutions allow you to dispute charges that have cleared. There are many reasons for disputing a payment, and each process is a little different.

Unauthorized Payments

Unfortunately, credit card fraud is a prevalent problem in our society today. If you see a payment that you did not authorize, it's vital that you contact your financial institution immediately. If a criminal has your credit card information, every moment counts. If you lost your debit card, you have to report the loss within two days if you don't want to be liable for charges up to $500. The Federal Trade Commission does not have such a time limit on reporting credit card loss, but the longer it's out there, the more complicated the case could get.

When you call your bank about a lost card or stolen information, the representative will either cancel the card or put a hold on it. This will stop any further fraudulent charges. After that point, the bank will issue you a new card and give you the proper paperwork for recovering the money that the criminals stole.

Billing Errors

You could dispute a charge if a seller charged you for goods or services that were never delivered. Similarly, if the seller charged you for more than you bought, you can contact your bank and file a dispute. For example, if a retailer charged you twice for the same transaction, your bank may be able to recover the money from the duplicate payment.

To dispute such a charge, you have to send a letter about the problem to your bank within 60 days of the statement on which the charge first appeared. Make sure to include your account number, the payment in question, the statement date and a detailed account of why you want to dispute the charge. From that time, your financial institution has either 90 days or two billing cycles (whichever comes first) to complete an investigation into the matter.

Products Not as Described

If you purchase a product within 100 miles of your home address and it has a value of at least $50, you have the right to dispute a charge based on the quality of the item. For example, if you purchase a game console and it doesn't work, you have the right to get your money back.

First, take it up with the retailer. In many cases it may be a simple mistake, and you can work out a solution with the store. However, some stores may refuse to issue a refund or allow an exchange. If this happens, contact your credit card issuer. The bank may cover the loss for you.

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