Credit Card consumer rights?

  Simsy 20:47 22 Jan 2009

A little poser...

I know that when spending over £100 on something using a credit card give you the right to claim from the credit card company if things go wrong with the product, but...

What if only some of the cost is put on the card, and the rest isn't. Do I still have the same rights?

The situation is that I have paid a deposit of £300 on a villa for a family holiday, using credit card. The is a balance of approx £600 to pay, but if I pay this by CCard there is a surcharge. If I pay the balance using another method do I have ANY rights against the CCard company should anything go awry?

Obviously in my case the nature of the purchase perhaps complicates the issue, but it could be, for example a £600 TV, with a downpayment of £200 and the balance paid in cash.

I have no claim, and don't anticipate one, I'm just curious. Any experts out there?



  aveylee 21:33 22 Jan 2009

Ex Trading Standards Consumer Adviser so hopefully you can trust this, or contact Consumer Direct and they will confirm it for you.
Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974, makes the Credit card company 'jointly and separately' liable for any breach of contract.
S.75 only applies where the item costs between £100 and £25,000. (Consumer Credit Act 2006 if over £25K).
This liability applies where any part of the purchase price is paid via a credit agreement (tied loan or credit card). Therefore paying 0.01p by credit card and £24,998 in cash makes the Credit Card liable for the FULL amount, i.e. £24,999.01.
That's not just the amount on the credit card but ALL of the cost of the goods (plus any damages, court costs, compensation etc.).
Other points - You don't need to approach the supplier of goods for a remedy first, you can go straight to the CC company. The CC company would also be obligated to meet any warranty obligations if the supplier has refused (until they refuse there is no breach to be liable for). You also have the theoretical right to require the CC company to repair or replace, and not just offer a refund. However most Judges would say requiring that of a CC company would be 'unreasonable' (How much would VISA know about fixing a TV for example) so that is why it is only a theoretical right.

  spuds 23:27 22 Jan 2009

Having used section 75 on three occasions, there are certain things that you have to watch out for. In my experiences, the credit provider will usually deny any responsibility when first approached for assistance. Persist and you will reap the benefits of protection.

If the villa is overseas, and the company you are dealing with is an overseas registered company, then there might be confusion, as to how the 'recent' extension to overseas deals apply within section 75. I would suggest that you check with your credit card provider before going ahead with the deal.

Recently there as been worries regarding voucher schemes that have not been honoured here in the UK, by companies like Woolworths and Zavvi. Even if a person bought vouchers with a credit card, they might not be covered under section 75. Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act would cover someone if they had bought 'a voucher'(one) worth £100.01 or more. But most vouchers are for amounts usually between £5/£30 which will not be covered by the act, because 'individual' items (vouchers) cannot be combined to make up the total of £100.01 or more.

Here are 2 links, perhaps of interest click here
click here

  Forum Editor 23:36 22 Jan 2009

what aveylee has said is absolutely correct. I might just add that this applies only if the card transaction was via a credit card (Amex and Diners cards are charge cards, and therefore not included), and providing the payment via the card was made direct to the supplier of the goods or service, and was part of a single transaction.

I should also point out that the upper limit for the transaction to be covered under Section 75 is £30,000 and not £25,000.

For a claim to succeed there must be a case of misrepresentation or breach of contract - you would not have a claim if you simply didn't like the villa when you got there.

  spuds 23:40 22 Jan 2009

Something that I failed to mention, that might effect the many silver surfers on the forum.

If you applied and obtained your credit card before 1st July 1977, then the credit card company is not legally obliged to honour Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act, and other certain consumer credit laws. But most credit providers have signed an undertaking with the relevant bodies, that they (as a goodwill gesture) will provide assistance and honour the agreement.

  Stuartli 00:16 23 Jan 2009

>>the credit provider will usually deny any responsibility when first approached>>

I've only had to raise problems buying goods using a credit card with Visa on a mere handful of occasions since 1985 when first obtaining a LloydsTSB Trustcard, but Visa has never been other than utterly efficient and resolved any problems in the shortest possible time.

LoydsTSB has now switched to Mastercard, but my Halifax debit card is Visa, so I tend to use that instead including on-line as problems support seems equally satisfactory.

In fact the adminstrator of Land of Leather (a major furniture outlet which has gone into administration) has stated:

"All customers who have either paid a deposit by credit card or Visa debit card, or who have paid a deposit by any means since December 26th, are "fully protected."

My understanding of a credit card is that if you have spent £100 or more (it used to be £50 with Barclays) on a transaction, whether in part or full payment, you have full backing in the event of any problems.

  ajm 01:25 23 Jan 2009

"Amex and Diners cards are charge cards, and therefore not included"

I have had a Amex Platinum Credit Card for a few years now and had to once claim for some goods/services and they were very helpful in refunding the full amount back to my card, but after "reminding" them of the Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974. Amex do both Charge and Credit cards

  Simsy 05:53 23 Jan 2009

Regarding AmEx...

They do now issue a "Credit Card", as well as the old "Charge Card"



  Forum Editor 01:47 24 Jan 2009

I have one myself, but traditionally the word 'Amex' has been associated with the original charge card, which is why I mentioned it.

  Stuartli 20:57 24 Jan 2009

The Halifax, for instance, provides the terms and conditions for use with its cards on a regular basis by post or they can be read on-line:

click here

I should imagine most credit card providers have similar terms, so could be worth a read.

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