The Fair Credit Billing Act (FCBA) provides guidelines for both consumers and creditors including procedures to manage disputes regarding billing statements. Federal law limits your responsibility for unauthorized charges to $50. In order to exercise your rights you need to:
- Write to the creditor at the address given for “billing inquiries,” not the address for sending your payments, and include your name, address, account number, and a description of the billing error.
- Send your letter so that it reaches the creditor within 60 days after the first bill with the error was mailed to you.
- It’s a good idea to send your letter by certified mail. Include copies (not originals) of sales slips or other documents that support your position. Keep a copy of your dispute letter.
- Ask for a return receipt so you have proof of what the creditor received.
- The creditor must acknowledge your complaint, in writing, within 30 days after receiving it, unless the problem has been resolved. The creditor must resolve the dispute within two billing cycles (but not more than 90 days) after getting your letter.
- If the card issuer finds you are correct, the charge should be removed from your bill. This is called a charge back. If the card issuer says that you are incorrect and the bill is correct, the card issuer must tell you why in writing. They must also tell you how much you owe and when your payment is due.