Disputes and chargebacks

(Chris) #1

One of the core reasons I use Monzo at the moment is that it’s a MasterCard, a credit card, and I expect the same level of protection as other credit cards.

However I’ve recently had to look into raising my first dispute. It turns out Monzo doesn’t offer the same protection as other credit cards.

Usually when there is a dispute my credit card company will reverse the transaction - the investigation will then begin, I will provide evidence etc. Once it’s all been completed the money will either stay reversed (successful) or be debited (unsuccessful). I’ve never had a transaction be unsuccessful as it’s always down to company’s trying to scam me. Credit card refunds are a last resort.

I’m learning this is not how Monzo operates, they will act in favour of the seller and keep the money debited until the investigation is complete.

This is a huge deal to me and makes a huge difference about what I choose to put through this card.

I would just like to offer a warning to the wider community - Monzo doesn’t offer the same level of protection as say Amex or other MasterCard providers. I would be mindful before putting transactions that need protection through this card.


That is because it is NOT a credit card but a prepaid card.

MasterCard is just a brand. It is not a credit card but a range of cards including, MasterCard Debit, Maestro Debit, Cirrus, Mastercard Prepaid, and Mastercard Credit (with giftcard varients on the prepaid and some banks overseas offering a chargecard varient of the debit card).

With the launch of the full current accounts Monzo will move from Mastercard Prepaid to Mastercard Debit. That also will not be a credit card.

There are various banks in the UK providing Mastercard Debit cards and it is clear to their customers that a Debit card is not a Credit card. The new cards will even have the word Debit printed on the front.

(Alex Sherwood) #3

Here’s some more details on chargebacks & how they work from Monzo -

including this guide, which is a great overview -

Protection from Fraud when Using PayPal Friends & Family
(Chris) #4

I wasn’t aware there was a differentiation between the two. Even after querying this with customer support this wasn’t mentioned. I was under the impression the same rules applied to all MasterCards (that weren’t MasterCard debit)

In that case my end point still stands.

For casual spending that doesn’t need protection Monzo is fine. For any transaction that king need any type of protection (tickets, a sofa etc) I wouldn’t recommend using Monzo at all, stick to a credit card they offer better protection and points.

(Tom Warren) #5

Yes and no. There are benefits debit cards can offer that trump credit cards i.e. transactions lower than £100 you can use chargeback. Generally credit cards are better for protection of goods over £100 as part of Section 75.

Finding the balance of when to use a credit over debit, and vice versa is the challenge.


For anything over £100 I always use a credit card, section 75 protection is so useful - the credit card company are equally liable with the supplier for any problems.

(Chris) #7

Exactly, however I wrongly assumed being MasterCard this also applied to Monzo. It’s a different flavour of card.

Of course, but it just means instead of routing all my spending through Monzo, I will now revert to using different cards. Monzo will purely be used for casual day to day spending.

Even for holidays I will be tempted to use the Halifax Clarity Card for tickets and tours and keep Monzo just for food etc. Just in case there is a problem.

Once Monzo turns into a bank later in the year I’m not sure it’ll be suitable for me as it will be a debit card. I’ve given away a lot of golden tickets - I will make people aware of these limitations I don’t think most people fully understand the benefits of a credit card.


If you are going to make people aware of limitations you should do that for Debit cards in general not just Monzo as otherwise you will be misleading people that there is a problem with Monzo cards when it is just a feature of ALL Mastercard and Visa Debit cards versus Credit cards


It’s also worth noting that charge cards like may Amex cards do not fall under the section 75 rules either. But in the Amex case, they are very good at taking the customer’s side.

(Chris) #10

To a point, yes - however the a wider issue here with the way the cards are labelled by Monzo / MasterCard, it should say MasterCard “Prepaid” or be a different colour to indicate at least that it doesn’t have the same protection as credit. All other cards have MasterCard Debit or say debit so it’s clear.

(Alex Sherwood) #11

The Monzo card has PREPAID on the front & Debit in the hologram on the back?

Edit to include photos of card.


Monzo follow very strict MasterCard guidelines. MasterCard have to sign off the card design so believe me when I say everything is well above board.

If anyone signs up to a financial product before reading up on it then ultimately it is their own fault if it bites them in the bum.

(Chris) #13

My “Mondo” card has nothing on the front but I can see the text in the hologram.

My takeaway is just the way I planned to use Monzo has changed today. It won’t be my main card now for reasons mentioned

(Bob) #15

I think the wider issue here is that you assumed the ‘MasterCard’ brand only referred to credit cards. I honestly don’t understand how anyone can mistake any prepay card for a credit card, certainly after months of use.


Especially when you don’t have any sort of credit on it.

(Chris) #17

I didn’t mistake it for a credit card. My mistake was assuming that Monzo would handle my disputes in a way that put me first and not the seller. My expectations were that they would be able to resolve these problems in a way that was progressive.

This isn’t the case and it fundamentally changes how I wanted to use this card.


You should go and warn customers at other banks too (Clydesdale Bank, Yorkshire Bank, Handelsbanken, Danske Bank, Metro Bank, etc) that a Debit card does not provide Credit card benefits :grin:

(Bob) #19

It’s clear from your very first sentence that you did:

(Justin Hunt) #20

Right People
Play nicely

Do we REALLY feel the need to labor this point any further ?

(Chris) #21

I’ll be clear. I wrongly assumed a MasterCard PrePaid and Credit had the same protection laws from a credit card standpoint. I didn’t think I had a credit card in my hand, I wrongly assumed Section 75 etc would apply to this card.

I was wrong on that front, totally wrong.

I also wrongly assumed that I would be protected by Monzo. I wrongly assumed they would fight for me. This is not the case - fine.