A little-known flaw in the Consumer Credit Act may put Jersey shoppers at risk of losing their money if things go wrong.
Under Section 75 of the UK Consumer Credit Act, shoppers who make payments between £100 and £30,000 on a credit card can get their money back if the goods turn out to be faulty, not as described or don’t arrive. The UK law makes the retailer and credit card company jointly liable. Jersey consumers usually benefit from this protection due to terms and conditions reflecting the UK Consumer Credit Act.
However, a little-known loophole revealed by a MoneySavingExpert means that consumers will only be reimbursed if there is a direct link between the customer, their credit card provider and the supplier. If the payment is processed by a third-party company then the protection under Section 75 does not apply.
So, if you bought a concert ticket through an agent on a credit card, you may not be able to get your money back using Section 75 if it doesn’t arrive.
The same may apply if you booked a holiday through a travel agent. However, the travel industry may very well have their own financial protection schemes in place.
You may also not be covered for credit card transactions made through online payment platforms, such as PayPal, because it breaks the chain between customer and supplier. However, if the firm you’re buying from has a “Commercial Entity Agreement” you’ll be able to make a claim under Section 75 even if you use PayPal. PayPal has its own Buyer Protection scheme. This covers online purchases made on eBay and other websites if the item does not arrive or match the seller’s description. Property, vehicles, custom-made items and industrial machinery are among some items that are not guaranteed.
Amazon is another firm where Section 75 may not apply. Shoppers who buy items on a credit card from third-party suppliers on the online marketplace will not be covered. If you buy directly from Amazon then you could make a claim.
Confused, it is not surprising! Trading Standards offers the following advice:
- Know who you are buying from and who will take your payment
- Wherever possible put payments on your credit card
- If you are entitled to protection, you are still covered even if a small proportion, part payment or deposit was paid using your card
- When things go wrong, don’t delay. If you don’t have Section 75 protection you may alternative protection through platform buyer protection schemes, but these are often time limited.
Free confidential consumer advice is available from Trading Standards on 448162 or email email@example.com. You can also drop in, they are in the Central Market under the clock.
Contactless Payments – Guidance
What are contactless payments?
Contactless payments allow you to make fast and secure payments for amounts up to £30 just by touching your card on the card reader.
You do not need to enter your four digit Personal Identification Number (PIN). You can make payments with debit, credit, or prepaid cards, which have the following contactless symbol: Other methods of contactless payment include mobile phone apps and wearable devices (wristbands and watches).
Some UK card providers are not currently issuing contactless payment cards, and contactless card readers are not available at all retailers.
Are contactless payments safe?
• They offer the same level of fraud protection as standard Chip and Pin transactions.
• You no longer have to enter your PIN for purchases of £30 and under. However, from time to time, you may be prompted to enter your PIN as a security measure. This is to verify you are the authorised cardholder and are in possession of your card.
• If your card is lost or stolen you may be protected against fraudulent activity and will not be liable for any losses incurred. However, if you have given your card to someone, you could be found liable.
• If you carry more than one card in your purse or wallet, take your contactless card out to make the payment. This will ensure the correct card is debited.
• Going contactless does not mean you should go without a receipt. Always accept the offer of a receipt, or request one if you are not automatically given one. This will make it easier to return goods if necessary.
• If you are not comfortable using a contactless card, or have concerns about fraud, contact your bank to enquire about their ‘opt-out’ service. Most banks offer this facility, but terms and conditions may vary.
Q: Is it possible for a thief to copy my card information?
A: Although the risks are low, it is possible. A device would probably need to be very close to your card before a thief could copy your details without you knowing.
Q: Is it possible to make an accidental purchase?
A: It is possible to accidently pay for something without meaning to, but only when you are very close to a card reader. The cashier would need to have activated the terminal, which would reduce the chance of accidental payments being taken.
Q: If I present my card to the reader twice, will I be charged twice?
A: No, the reader will only take one payment per transaction.
Q: Can I use the contactless function to get money out at a cash machine?
A: No, you will need to enter your PIN each time you use a cash machine.
Channel Islands Financial Ombudsman
The Channel Islands Financial Ombudsman (CIFO) will commence the resolution of complaints about financial services on 16 November 2015, when its full legal powers are brought into force through the Financial Services Ombudsman (Jersey) Law 2014 (Appointed Day) (No. 3) Act 2015.
CIFO has published the Jersey Fee Scheme and Jersey Levy Scheme, setting out the detail of its funding mechanism. It has also published a consultation paper on a model complaint-handling procedure for financial services providers that can be found https://www.ci-fo.org/cifo-consultations/
The closing date for responses is 30 October 2015.
Three key messages emerged from our survey:
- We must all take personal responsibility for
our financial health;
- We must all research our facts and ask questions to help us make informed decisions and to better understand the bigger picture of what financial health entails – over the short, medium and long term;
- Most importantly we must NEVER put our head in the sand – financial difficulties escalate not diminish!
5 Ways to Respond to a Credit Card Interest Rate Increase
What to Do When Your Credit Card’s Interest Rate Increases
Wouldn’t it be nice if low interest rates last forever? Unfortunately, the saying “All good things must come to an end” is especially true when it comes to credit cards.
One of the practices credit card issuers are notorious for is suddenly increasing interest rates. Of course one of the reasons it seems so sudden is because most credit card issuers only have to send you 15 days notice before increasing your interest rate.
Staying Secure at Cashpoints
LINK is the UK’s cash machine network, providing you with access to your cash. The number of free machines is at an all time high, and to help you manage your money effectively you can also check your balance free of charge at any LINK machine.
Despite some recent high-profile incidents, cash machine crime is very uncommon. LINK have provided a number of simple steps which all cardholders can take to help fight ATM crime :Read More
Methods of Payment
A payment is the transfer of money from one party (such as a person or company) to another. A payment is usually made in exchange for the provision of goods, services or both, or to fulfill a legal obligation.
Common means of payment by an individual include: –
- Bank Transfer
Credit rating – what’s the score?
The importance of your credit history is not overrated. Your credit history information is of interest to a lot of people. A bad credit history can make it harder for you to obtain loans and even a mobile phone contract. Landlords and potential employers can and will also look at your credit history report.
Banks have changed the way they decide to lend money since the financial crisis. Essentially, the lenders now want to take fewer risks with their cash.
Basically, being granted a credit facility enables you to repay over a set term usually having interest added and paid back with the initial advance on a monthly basis.Read More
Who we are and what we do
Community Savings is the only viable alternative to a high street bank based in Jersey. There is no other government or third party agency that is able to offer the range of services described below to all Island residents. We operate an “open door” policy and with virtually no restrictions based on residency or credit history we are able to help the majority of people who come to us.
To access our services customers need to join “an interest group” (similar to being a member of a credit union). Our biggest group is based at our town premises in Seale Street, St Helier by the Town Hall. Open from Tuesday – Friday from 9.30 am – 12.30pm our front desk services are provided by a team of welcoming volunteers. Applicants need only bring some photographic ID and proof of address and an account can be opened immediately if all is in order. Wages or income support can be paid into an account and direct debits paid out. In addition customers can have a Cred-E card which acts as a “top-up” debit card.Read More
APR – Annual Percentage Rate
Annual Percentage Rate
Everyone has heard of the abbreviated term “APR” but what does it exactly mean? And if we need a loan what are the conditions that we need to adhere to?
APR stands for “the Annual Percentage Rate of charge” and it can be used to compare different credit and loan offers. It is used as a measuring mechanism, which takes into account not just the interest on a loan, but also other charges incurred for borrowing the money (i.e. any arrangement fee).
APR will vary from lender to lender, but in short, the APR tells you how much your borrowing will cost over the course of a year, as a proportion of the amount you have borrowed. So if you are borrowing £100 at an APR of 9%, you will pay £9 in interest and charges over the first year.Read More