Most of us find it convenient and are comfortable going about our business with a cashless wallet. However, you run the risk of identity theft. You also could have damage to your bank account if you lose your credit, debit or ATM cards. It’s important that you know exactly what you should do if you have a lost credit card. The Fair Credit Billing Act (FCBA) and the Electronic Fund Transfer Act (EFTA) offer some steps to take.
Steps to Take for a Lost Credit Card or Bank Card
Report your lost credit card to the card issuers as quickly as possible. It’s a good idea to follow up your phone calls with a letter. Include your account number and the date you first reported the loss.
Your maximum liability under federal law for unauthorized use of your credit card is $50. If you report the loss before your credit cards are used, the FCBA says the card issuer cannot hold you responsible for any unauthorized charges. If a thief uses your cards before you report them missing, the most you will owe for unauthorized charges is $50 per card. Also, if the loss involves your credit card number, but not the card itself, you have no liability for unauthorized use.
Your liability under federal law for unauthorized use of your bank card depends on how quickly you report it. If you report an ATM or debit card missing before it’s used without your permission, the EFTA says the card issuer cannot hold you responsible for any unauthorized transfers. If unauthorized use occurs before you report it, your liability under federal law depends on how quickly you report the loss.
After the loss, review your billing statements carefully. If they show any unauthorized charges, it’s best to send a letter to the card issuer describing each questionable charge. Tell them the date your card went missing or when you first noticed unauthorized charges, and when you first reported the problem.
Visit the ACCC website for more information & resources on credit.