Suddenly,  there are news stories about credit card disputes everywhere. Fox Business had one about consumer complaints, but those aren’t the same thing. Or rather, we might consider charge disputes a subset of overall “complaints,” which could include everything from bad service, to not crediting a payment, to not honoring a stated interest rate, and more.

But disputes are, specifically, of course, where the charges themselves are called into question — either because the customer claims never to have made the particular order, or — if mail order — never to have received it

The NY Times’ money columnist, Ron Lieber, recently wrote a long column on the subject, which  took consumers on a behind-the-scenes tour of what sorts of processes and mechanisms are set in motion, once such a dispute is lodged.

“Several million of these disputes,” he noted, “involve outright fraud, though none of the card networks would break out the exact pe

Jurassic, indeed. If not Triassic! Lieber continues, saying that “merchants must carve out time to respond to each dispute. They also pay one-time fees for the privilege and may end up paying higher overall fees to accept cards if a pattern of too-frequent disputes emerges. Or they just get cut off from accepting cards altogether.” As for the rest,  they “require a lot of manual labor. Every time someone initiates a dispute, the bank that issued the card has to look into it. That means someone has to contact the merchant and wait for a reply that may include a receipt or other documentation that arrives via fax machine or by some other Jurassic process.”

So as a merchant, what are your protections in a credit card dispute?

AVPS is partnered with a company that provides merchants with assistance during such disputes. Procedures that get initiated on your behalf include a review of how the merchant processed the transaction initially, and whether any credit or refunds were credited back to the account in question.

Merchants with the best intentions, for example, will sometimes refund a charge, using a different means of payment — cash or check — and no record of that payment will exist on the originating account.

AVPS can also arrange for its partner to “re-present” chargeback fees so that moneys can go back into the merchant’s account, rather than being held in abeyance.

And AVPS can also help merchants discover whether they’re “overpromising” on an item in such a way it makes them liable for increased disputes. In other words, are you saying your weight loss product will, specifically, help a customer become 20 pounds lighter in 60 days? Or are you saying it will simply help the customer lose weight?

If you’re facing a charge dispute, or want to start some wise “prepping” now to make sure you don’t, or that such impacts are minimized, contact your AVPS rep today, to discover a whole range of services you may not even have know we offer!