Reversal of charges

I am holding a First Gulf Bank credit card and have a very consistent payment record. According to a statement received on July 15, I had to pay approximately Dh26,000, including cash installments, retail purchases and some ‘shop now pay later’ payments, which were due on August 15.

To confirm the due amount, I called the call centre agent and confirmed the same. I paid Dh3,600 on August 7 and Dh10,600 on the August 14. On the next day, I called the call centre and they confirmed that I had paid Dh14,200 and a remaining of Dh12,000 is now due. On the same day, I paid Dh12,700, so the total which I paid towards the due amount was Dh26,900.

I got the August statement, which was generated on August 25 in which everything was fine as it showed all of my four payments on different dates within the due date. When I got the September statement, I came to know I had been charged Dh189.56 for not settling a ‘shop now pay later’ transaction, which was due on August 15.

I raised a complaint to reverse the interest charge as I paid the full amount within the due date (that is, August 15) but my complaint was declined and the reason for that was I had paid my due amount in installments. It seems that the bank had adjusted my payments with some transactions, which were not due. The reason given by the bank is absurd, considering the fact that I paid the full amount within the due date. It doesn’t matter how I paid - whether in full or installments.  At the end of the day, the bank received the money within the due date.

Previously, I was paying my total outstanding in different installments and at that time, there were no issues from the bank’s side. I think I made a mistake as I had deposited some money before the due date instead of keeping it in my wallet. I think I am the first person to get a fine of Dh189.56 for early payment!

From Mr Vijeesh Vijayan

The management of First Gulf Bank responds:

The annual membership fee of Mr Vijeesh Vijayan has already been reversed on the card and the same was reflected on his statement, on October 25.

Mr Vijayan responds:

I would like to thank Gulf News very much for its help. FGB contacted me and the charges have been reversed.

Closure of credit card accounts

I had credit card accounts with mashreq bank (Visa card and Master Card) and paid off the remaining balance of both cards on August 30, 2010. I called their customer service centre the next day to advice of the payment I had made and the settlement of the accounts as well. To my surprise, I received an email from their third party legal representative on May 7, 2013 to pay an outstanding amount of Dh11,209.63, which I have no knowledge of since in the past three years no one from mashreq has bothered to call me, send a statement or email me to inform that I have to pay something.

I called their call centre and informed them about this issue. Apparently, according to the agent, it was a system error on mashreq’s side. A report was filed and was sent to the recovery department and I was told to wait for mashreq’s call to resolve my case.

A few days have passed and I haven’t heard anything from mashreq but I was harassed by the legal representative and even negotiated with me to pay Dh3,000 to close my case. I went to the Recovery department along Airport Road in Abu Dhabi on May 12, the representative checked both my credit card accounts and told me that the Master Card was not written off, but it was paid off for closure.

She gave me the contact details of the person at their Dubai branch who is handling my case so that the amount would be reversed and closed. I contacted him, a senior officer in the recovery department, and he promised to prepare a letter for the reversal of my Master Card and that I just have to wait for a call again for a couple of days regarding this. I haven’t heard from him since then and he is not entertaining my calls anymore.

I have been in touch with their call centre agents and they have been calling me every week and asking the same question if someone from the recovery department has contacted me. Until now, no action has been taken by mashreq. I really need someone to assist me in getting the attention of mashreq to solve this issue, this may help them update their systems accurately and avoid angry consumers.

From Ms Phoebe Kathleen Dela Paz
 Abu Dhabi

The management of Mashreq responds:

Thank you for sharing Ms Dela Paz’s letter with us. We sincerely apologise to Ms Dela Paz for the inconvenience. We have prepared the clearance letter and contacted her to visit our branch for the same. Once again, we apologise to our customer. Thank you for seeking clarification.

Ms Phoebe Kathleen Dela Paz responds:

Thank you Gulf News for helping me in contacting Mashreq. I got my clearance letter from the Abu Dhabi branch.

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