RBI’s New Guidelines on Credit Card Refunds: What You Need to Know

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The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has introduced new guidelines regarding credit card refunds, addressing how refunds for failed transactions will be adjusted against credit card bills. Understand the implications of these changes for credit card users.

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) recently amended its “Master Direction – Credit Card and Debit Card – Issuance and Conduct Directions, 2022,” introducing significant changes regarding credit card refunds and bill payments. Here’s what you need to know:

1. Understanding Credit Card Refunds:

   – When you make a purchase with a credit card and seek a refund, the merchant typically credits the refund to your original mode of payment.

   – The refund amount is deducted from your existing credit card outstanding balance, increasing your available credit limit by the same amount.

   – The process of receiving a credit card refund can take several days, ranging from five to 14 days, depending on various factors.

2. RBI Guidelines for Credit Card Refunds:

   – The RBI has provided clear guidelines for adjusting credit card refunds against your credit card bill, addressing scenarios such as refunds within the same billing cycle and refunds after bill generation but before payment.

   – In scenarios where refunds are credited before the bill generation date, the refund amount will be adjusted against other debits before calculating the total amount due on your credit card for that month.

   – For refunds credited after the bill generation but before payment, the refund amount will be included in the total amount due on your credit card bill. However, you will only be required to pay the remaining outstanding amount after deducting the refund.

   – If a refund is credited after you’ve already paid your credit card bill, the RBI stipulates that card issuers must obtain explicit consent from the cardholder to adjust the refund amount against future dues. If consent is not provided, the refund amount will be credited to the cardholder’s bank account.

   – Upon the cardholder’s request, the card issuer must reverse the credit amount outstanding in the card account and credit it back to the cardholder’s bank account within three working days.

3. Implications for Credit Card Users:

   – Credit card users now have clear guidelines on how refunds for failed transactions will be adjusted against their credit card bills.

   – Users have the option to adjust the refund against future dues or receive it in their bank account, depending on the timing of the refund and their preferences.

   – These guidelines aim to streamline the credit card refund process and provide clarity to both cardholders and card issuers.

In conclusion, the RBI’s new guidelines on credit card refunds offer greater transparency and flexibility for credit card users, ensuring a smoother experience when seeking refunds for failed transactions.

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