Credit cards add a number of facilities to the consumer’s life. But from time to time they bring some hassles and headaches. What to do at this time? Who to turn to? Do you know how to make a credit card claim? Find out here the way of the stones to solve this problem.
Credit card complaints are frequent
The Centobank periodically publishes a ranking of registered consumer complaints against financial institutions. This ranking shows not only the list of institutions with the highest number of complaints, but also which types of complaints are the most frequent. And occurrences involving credit cards are usually there.
Idec (Brazilian Institute of Consumer Protection) also publishes statistics of this type and in them credit cards also appear, often leading the list of complaints. Idec’s survey is very comprehensive and it is noted that financial institutions, health plans, telephone services and utilities such as water and energy are by far the main targets of consumer complaints.
Common credit card complaints include:
- unilateral contract changes;
- fare charges without prior notice;
- abusive interest charges on revolving or installment payments;
- card issuance without the customer having requested it.
Even so, there are consumers who do not know how to deal with a mistake on their card and end up leaving the problem, often bearing some kind of damage.
Credit Card Complaints: Who to Turn to
First of all, gather all the documentation you deem necessary to support your argument. Statements, invoices, vouchers, printed correspondence, emails, anything that has a direct bearing on the subject of your complaint. Have this material handy whenever you are dealing with this subject.
First look for the institution itself
The first step is always to try to clarify the issue with the card company itself by calling their customer service. The telephone number of this exchange is usually available on the card itself, on the invoice or on the institution’s website. When making this contact, be sure to note the date, time, attendant name, and attendance protocol number. This data may be important later.
If the answer is not satisfactory, seek the institution’s ombudsman. This is often a very effective instance of resolving such conflicts.
Use external organs if necessary
If the pending issue persists, look for outside agencies that can intercede to stimulate or even mediate an attempt at agreement. The main organs you can turn to are:
- sites like “Complain Here”;
- the centobank;
- Abecs (Brazilian Association of Credit Card Companies and Services).
Bodies such as Procon and the CentoBank make an assessment as to the merits of their complaint. If accepted, they will contact the institution and act as mediators, setting a new deadline for resolving the conflict.
If even with the mediation of the organs there is no agreement, look for a good lawyer and evaluate with him the possibility of going to court against the institution.
How to make the complaint
In every attempt at dialogue you make, whatever the instance,
- keep Calm,
- have the necessary data and documents at hand,
- be clear about the subject of your complaint,
- stick to it and
- be clear about the solution you expect to achieve.
While the settlement agreement is in progress, avoid using the card that is the cause of disagreement.
Patience, have a lot of patience
Using so many instances, having to explain the same problem over and over, waiting in line,. With patience and looking for the right channels, the chances of seeing your complaint answered increase greatly. Try it!