Section 75: Free protection on your credit card purchases

Stewart Turner / 12 March 2015

Did you know that paying with your credit card can give you extra legal protection if anything goes wrong? We explain how to get a refund on faulty products or goods that fail to arrive from your credit card provider.



Section 75 is a law that states that your card provider is just as liable as the retailer for any faults or breaches of contract, making it wise to reach for the plastic if you’re splashing out on a big, expensive item or that holiday of a lifetime.

 

What does Section 75 cover?

Section 75 covers anything you buy on a credit card costing between £100 and £30,000 – even if you don’t pay for the whole thing using plastic. For example, if you bought a brand new Honda by leaving a £100 deposit on your card and paying the rest by cheque, your credit card company would still be obliged to step in if anything went wrong.

Section 75 is particularly useful in cases of faulty goods, where the retailer is unwilling to help, companies going bust, or items purchased online which fail to arrive. In each of these scenarios, your credit card company is obliged to stump up.

 

Try to fix the problem with the retailer first

Try to resolve your complaint with the retailer first. With a problem like a faulty washing machine, it’ll always be the quickest and easiest route to take. If they decide not to play ball, use Section 75.

Read our guide to scams on eBay.

 

How do I make a claim under Section 75?

Contact your credit card provider and tell them you want to make a claim. Include details of what you bought, where and how you paid for it, with copies of receipts. Explain how the purchase was faulty or unacceptable, and list any contact you’ve had with the retailer prior to making the Section 75 claim.

 

Section 75 pitfalls to look out for

The £100 - £30,000 threshold only applies to single items. For example, two plane tickets costing £99 each wouldn’t be covered, even if you bought them together.

Additional costs, like delivery charges and admin fees, aren’t accounted for in the threshold either, so a £99 concert ticket wouldn’t be covered, even if a booking fee of a fiver meant you actually paid £104 for it.

Bear in mind there a few instances where Section 75 can’t help you. Purchases made through an intermediary, like an online payment processor (eg, PayPal) or a travel agent, won’t be covered by Section 75. However, your holiday will be ATOL protected, and PayPal has its own purchase protection in place, so it’s not all doom and gloom.

 

What can I do if the credit card company refuses to pay up?

The Financial Ombudsman Services can take a look at your case if you believe your Section 75 claim has been rejected unfairly.

Read our guide to using the new Retail Ombudsman..

The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated.

The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.