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Mastercard chargebacks

Learn about the Mastercard chargeback process and the guidelines to dispute a chargeback.

The Mastercard chargeback flow consists of the following steps:

  1. Optional: Request for Information
  2. Information Supplied
  3. Notification of Chargeback
  4. 1st Chargeback
  5. Information Supplied
  6. Chargeback Reversed
  7. 2nd Chargeback
  8. Arbitration Case Filing

Mastercard flow

Optional: Request for Information (RFI)

A Request For Information is initiated when the cardholder does not recognize or does not agree to a charge, and requests more information from their bank. It can also be exercised as a Fraud investigation where the real cardholder does not acknowledge the transaction.
For Requests For Information (RFI), always upload information that can help the cardholder to recognize the charge or that can support your position that the transaction is valid.

At this point, funds are not yet deducted from your account.

Mastercard transaction receipt RFI reasons

Code Message
6305 Cardholder does not agree with billed amount
6321 Cardholder does not recognize transaction
6323 Transaction Information Document (TID) needed for cardholder's personal records expense reporting
6341 Fraud investigation
6342 Potential chargeback or compliance documentation

For Requests For Information with the 6341 code (Fraud investigation), block the delivery of the goods (if still possible) and block the shopper from performing any future payments for fraudulent cases.

For Requests For Information with other reason codes, always upload information that can help the cardholder to recognize the charge, or that can support your position that the transaction is valid.

You can upload information within 18 days of the Retrieval Request's date.

Recommendations on Retrieval Request documents are:

For physical goods

  • Order confirmation/copy invoice.
  • Proof that goods are delivered (DHL/UPS signed proof of delivery).

For digital goods

  • Order confirmation/copy invoice.
  • Proof that services are downloaded/used (date and time of download, IP address, and email address that was used for the download).

Information Supplied

Adyen received the supporting documents and forwarded them to the scheme. It is no longer possible to change these documents.

Notification of Chargeback

A Notification of Chargeback (NoC) may follow from a Request for Information (RFI), or occur immediately after the transaction payment status is set to Settled or Refunded skipping the RFI step. It usually occurs a couple of days after the NoC, and has a financial impact. At this stage money is withdrawn from your account, since the dispute process has started.

1st Chargeback

The issuing bank initiates the first chargeback on behalf of the cardholder by sending a chargeback notification to Adyen stating the dispute reason.
We will assign it to you for review in the Disputes tab of the Adyen Customer Area, or inform you via Adyen's notifications. At the same time, your account is debited for the chargeback amount, and the NotificationOfChargeback and Chargeback journals are booked.
After your review, you can decide to either:

Contact Adyen with the relevant defense documents (see Reason codes and guidelines) within 40 days.

There is no opportunity later in the process to provide information (unless this information was not available before). Therefore, please address the reason code and upload information that can support your position. Only uploading an overview of the order details is not enough.

After you have submitted the defense material, it is irreversible and automatically sent (through the credit card network) back to the issuing bank. 

At this stage the journal Chargeback reversed is booked and funds are transferred back into your account.

Representement Guidelines

For a list of Mastercard dispute reason codes, see Dispute reason codes.

Information Supplied

Adyen received the supporting documents and forwarded them to the scheme. It is no longer possible to change these documents.

Chargeback Reversed

The disputed amount was transferred to your account. The issuer is still reviewing the defense. If they accept, this is the final status.

2nd Chargeback

The issuing bank can initiate a second chargeback (on behalf of the cardholder) within 45-47 days from your upload date (Information Supplied date).

With the second chargeback, funds are taken from a merchant's account (after previously being reversed) and there is no opportunity to upload documents.

Mastercard does not allow document upload for second chargebacks. If you have enough information that the second chargeback is invalid, contact the Adyen Disputes Team to challenge the second dispute.

Case arbitration

After receiving the Second Chargeback you must decide whether or not to pursue the case. If the decision is made to pursue the case, you must contact the Adyen Chargeback team with supporting information within 40 days of receiving the Second Chargeback. you can provide supporting information at this stage only if this information was not available before. Mastercard allows only one possibility to provide supporting documents to defend a chargeback. This is at the first chargeback stage. Therefore, the necessary documents should be provided at the first chargeback stage and not later.

If your claim is valid, Adyen will file the case for Arbitration. However, doing so is potentially expensive. For Mastercard, there is an initial Filing Fee of EUR 150 and an additional Administrative Fee of EUR 250. The party that loses the Arbitration case filing is liable for both fees (on top of the chargeback amount). It is also possible that Mastercard charges EUR 100 fee for each Technical Error associated with the case. A technical error can be for example if the issuing bank changes the reason code for the Second Chargeback or when the bank processed a chargeback after the required timeframe. Mastercard can assess Technical Error Fees against either party, win or lose.

Adyen is not responsible if the card scheme rules in favour of the cardholder.