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What should I do if there are unauthorized charges on my credit card account?

Contact your bank right away. To limit your liability, it is important to notify the bank promptly upon discovering any unauthorized charge(s). You may notify the bank in person, by telephone, or in writing. The bank should have provided you with information in your account agreement on how to notify it when you believe there is unauthorized use of your credit card. The address to write to regarding unauthorized charges may be different from where you send your payment.

After receiving your notification, the bank must conduct a reasonable investigation of the claim before it can claim that no billing error occurred or that a different billing error occurred. Actions that a bank may take in reviewing a claim include the following:

  • Looking at the transaction in light of other purchases
  • Reviewing whether goods were delivered to your residence or place of business
  • Comparing signatures
  • Requesting a copy of a police report, if one was filed
  • Requesting documentation to assist in validating the claim
  • Requesting a signed written statement from the cardholder or authorized user
  • Requesting information about the cardholder's knowledge of the person who allegedly used the card or of that person's authority to do so.

The bank must notify you of the results of its investigation within two complete billing cycles or 90 days after receiving the notice, whichever is less.

Refer to 12 CFR 1026 "Truth in Lending (Regulation Z)" for more information.

Last Reviewed: October 2020

Please note: The terms "bank" and "banks" used in these answers generally refer to national banks, federal savings associations, and federal branches or agencies of foreign banking organizations that are regulated by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC). Find out if the OCC regulates your bank. Information provided on HelpWithMyBank.gov should not be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion of the OCC.

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