I have a Smart Saver credit card and current account with Mashreq Bank. When I checked my credit card statements for the past two months, I found that Mashreq had charged me a “hidden charge” of Dh236.60 on November 2, 2016, and another amounting to Dh256.60 on December 2, which is a total of Dh493.20. I did not understand why they had charged me this amount.

I am a prompt customer, always paying the amount due on my cards. I have not had any delays with my payments. So I registered a complaint, requesting them to refund the money. Mashreq’s disputes department explained to me that this was an insurance protection fee, which is automatically activated on a card and they refused to revise it.

I had deactivated this facility a year ago. Mashreq executives called me to activate this facility many times. But, I did not agree. Now, they have activated this facility without my knowledge, request or permission. Their explanation for this was that they had sent several intimations by email and text messages to me. But, I did not get any information regarding this.

I request Gulf News to help me sort this issue.

From Mr Anoop Patteri


The management of Mashreq responds:

We have reviewed the concerns raised by Mr Patteri regarding the Pay Protect charges toward his credit card and our investigation reveals that the benefit was auto-enrolled on August 10, 2016, by the bank.

A text message was sent to his registered mobile number on August 11, confirming the benefit enrolment. In addition, an email was also sent to Mr Patteri, detailing the features, benefits and claims process of the Pay Protect facility.

He received the benefit as complementary two-month coverage, and thereafter, 0.99 per cent charge was levied from the third month onwards. As a product feature, the initial two months’ worth of charges were reversed, which is a time frame allowed for all customers, in case they would like to proceed with cancellation.

However, we received no request from Mr Patteri for the cancellation of the benefit until December. The request for the cancellation of the benefit was placed on December 10 by Mr Patteri and on December 12, the benefit was cancelled as per his request.

As a goodwill gesture, we have reversed the Pay Protect charges and informed him of the same. We have also educated him to check his monthly statement and to report any disputed transactions in a timely manner.

We take this opportunity to thank Gulf News for bringing a customer issue to our notice.

Mr Patteri responds:

Mashreq has refunded the full amount charged, that is Dh493.20, on January 16, 2017. Thank you Gulf News, for taking the effort to resolve this issue.

(Process initiation: January 15, 2017. Response from organisation: January 18, 2017. Reader confirmation: January 18, 2017.)

Editor’s note: Do you have similar issues that you would like to raise with us? You can write to us at readers@gulfnews.com.