COVID-Related Disputes Best Practices
We’re all facing unique challenges at this time, but for business owners, the stakes are particularly high. We want to offer support and help in the ways we can. This page will serve as your resource for navigating payment disputes that customers may have reported to their bank due to factors resulting from COVID-19.
What is a dispute?
Customers have the right to dispute purchases they disagree with by asking their bank to reverse the charge on their card. The customer’s bank will hold the disputed funds from your Square account until the dispute is settled. Square doesn’t decide the final outcome of payment disputes – our aim is to help you send relevant evidence to your customer’s bank that gives you the best chance of protecting your hard-earned sale.
Note: Square does not charge any additional fees to our merchants for disputes.
What are the most common reasons a customer may dispute a payment during COVID-19?
Though there are more reasons that a customer might dispute a payment, Square sellers have seen an increase in chargebacks in three key areas throughout the ongoing COVID-19 crisis:
Not Received: A customer claims to never have received the goods or services that they purchased.
Cancelled: A customer claims to have cancelled their order but was still charged for the transaction.
Credit not Processed: A customer claims to have returned or cancelled their order and did not receive a credit or refund in line with the return policy.
How do you improve your chances of winning these types of disputes?
Prevention is our collective focus, but we know that despite best efforts, disputes may still occur. In order to defend yourself when a dispute does happen, it is important to provide compelling evidence to your customer’s bank showing that their reason for filing the dispute is invalid. You can submit relevant documentation to defend open disputes in your Square Dashboard.
What documentation should you provide?
While the following types of documentation are useful in response to all types of disputes, they are especially helpful while defending disputes related to COVID-19.
What happens after you submit your documentation?
After your documentation is submitted to Square through your Square Dashboard, all you have to do is wait. We’ll review your documentation and forward your information to your customer’s bank. Here you can also view the status of the dispute, all documents you have uploaded thus far, and what’s next in the dispute process.
The bank can take up to 90 days from the start of the dispute to make their final decision. The dispute outcome is final and Square will not be able to continue to fight the dispute on your behalf. As soon as the decision is made, we’ll notify you of their ruling via email and on your Disputes Dashboard. To learn more about the dispute process, refer to our help video.