Section 75: Your free credit card purchase protection

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When you spend money on your credit card you get extra consumer protection on your purchases. Find out more about Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act and how it can provide you with additional peace of mind.

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What is Section 75?

Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act is a piece of legislation that protects you when spending on your credit card, but it only applies to credit card purchases where you spend between £100 and £30,000. You don’t even need to have paid for all of your purchase on credit card to benefit either.

Say, for example, you booked a £1,000 holiday. The whole cost would be protected even if you only put a £100 deposit on your credit card and paid for the rest with cash.

Here are some other examples of when you would and wouldn't be covered by Section 75:

  • If you paid for a watch that cost £110, you would be covered by Section 75. However, if you bought two watches that cost £70 each, you would not be covered.

  • If you bought a lamp for £95 with a £7 delivery charge, you would not be covered by Section 75 because the item itself costs less than £100.

However, if your purchase costs less than £100, or more than £30,000, you may be able to claim using the Chargeback scheme.

For more information you can find the official details of Section 75 here

When can you claim under Section 75?

There are two broad scenarios where you can make a claim under Section 75. These are:

  • Breach of contract: You do not get what you have paid for, or not to the standard specified. For example, an item you buy does not get delivered, or it is not in the condition described.

  • Misrepresentation: You are given the wrong information, which convinces you to pay for a product. For example, you buy an expensive pair of headphones after being misinformed that they would be compatible with your music player.

You cannot, however, use Section 75 if you have changed your mind about something you have bought and want to return it without proof of purchase. 

Claims can be made for UK and overseas transactions and it doesn't matter whether the purchase was made in store, online, over the phone or by mail order.

How to claim under Section 75

You should always attempt to get a refund from the retailer before starting a Section 75 claim.

If your dispute with the retailer fails, you should contact your credit card provider to start your Section 75 claim.

It's worth noting that you can still claim under Section 75 if you closed your credit card account.

You need to tell your credit card provider:

  • The name of the retailer

  • The service or product you bought

  • How much it cost

  • Any other costs you want to claim back

  • What was wrong with your purchase - if it was faulty, for example

  • The date you made the purchase

  • Any attempts you have made to get money back from the retailer

You may get asked to send the details in writing, including proof of purchase, or by completing a Section 75 claim form, either online or by post.

Claiming for associated costs

Section 75 covers "consequential losses", as well as the cost of what you bought. This covers any costs caused by the problem with your purchase. For example, if you bought tickets for an event that got cancelled, you may be able to claim back your travel and hotel costs from your credit card company.

Does Section 75 apply if you use your credit card through Paypal?

This is where it gets complicated.

Section 75 only applies where there is a direct relationship between a sum paid and the product.

When you pay through PayPal, you sometimes pay your funds to PayPal who then pays the retailer. So even if you use a credit card linked to your Paypal account, the PayPal service counts as a middleman and you don't have Section 75 protection. There are exceptions, however. If your payment goes direct to the seller and he, she or it has a ‘commercial entity agreement’ you may still get protection.

What about purchases on Apple or Google Pay?

Whether or not you get Section 75 protection for purchases on Apple or Google Pay depends on which card you are holding in your virtual wallet. If it’s a credit card, you’ll still get full Section 75 protection. If it’s a debit card you will only be able to use the Chargeback scheme to try to recover your money.

Does it matter if my partner made the purchase with a secondary card?

Sometimes people will apply for an additional card for use by someone else , such as their partner. In these instances, it’s always worth making large payments on the primary card.

Spending may still be covered on the additional card but the primary cardholder may need to state that the payment was made with their authority and that they are benefitting from the purchase - as would be the case with something like a shared sofa.

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