Do you wonder why you received a Mastercard chargeback?
Mastercard provides a numerical reason code that explains why a cardholder filed a dispute against you.
There are four categories of Mastercard chargeback reason codes.
- Cardholder Disputes
- Point of Interaction Errors
If you’ve ever read the 730-page Mastercard Chargeback Guide Merchant’s Edition, you’d never believe reason codes were this simple to understand. That’s why I made this list for you.
I've broken down the most relevant chargeback reason codes into Mastercard’s four primary categories for you to keep as a reference. Bookmark this or print it out. Share it with your merchant friends.
The codes are listed as CODE: Title | Explanation.
They appear in numerical order according to category.
Here they are.
Authorisation is where the merchant obtains approval from the cardholder's issuing bank to proceed with the transaction.
4808: Authorization-Related Chargeback | This is used when a transaction occurs without proper authorisation from the cardholder or issuer.
4812: Account Number Not On File | This applies when a cardholder account number is not found in the issuer’s database and the transaction can’t be authorised.
4837: No Cardholder Authorization | This applies when a cardholder claims they did not authorise a transaction.
Rebutting cardholder disputes requires merchants to provide evidence such as proof of delivery, service agreements, or communication with the customer. They are often resolved by reviewing the merchant’s policies, transaction documentation, and cardholder communication records.
4841: Cancelled Recurring Transaction | For transactions that continue after the cardholder cancels a recurring agreement.
4850: Installment Billing Dispute | This applies to disputes regarding instalment payments.
4853: Cardholder Dispute of a Recurring Transaction | When a cardholder disputes a recurring transaction for reasons other than cancellation.
4854: Cardholder Dispute Not Elsewhere Classified (NEC) | A general category for cardholder disputes that don’t fit into other specific codes.
4855: Goods or Services Not Provided | Used when the cardholder claims the goods or services they paid for were not provided.
4859: Addendum, No-show, or ATM Dispute | Covers a range of specific transaction types, including no-show fees and ATM disputes.
4860: Credit Not Processed | Used when a promised credit for a return or cancellation was not processed.
4900: Service Cancelled | This applies when a service, like a subscription, was cancelled but still billed
4999: Domestic Chargeback Dispute (Not Fraud) | A general code for various domestic disputes unrelated to fraud.
Handling fraud disputes often involves thorough investigation, including reviewing transaction details, the cardholder’s past transaction history, and any relevant communication.
4807: Warning Bulletin File | This code is applied when a transaction is processed despite the card being listed on a warning bulletin file.
4840: Fraudulent Processing of Transactions | Used in cases where a transaction is processed fraudulently.
4849: Questionable Merchant Activity | For transactions that involve questionable or suspicious activities by the merchant.
4863: Cardholder Does Not Recognize Potential Fraud | For transactions the cardholder does not recognise and suspects to be fraudulent.
4870: Chip Liability Shift | This applies in cases of liability shift due to EMV chip technology.
4871: Chip/PIN Liability Shift | Used specifically for liability shifts involving EMV chip and PIN technology.
4875: EMV Transaction Counterfeit Fraud | For chargebacks related to counterfeit fraud in EMV transactions.
4880: Suspected Counterfeit Transaction | Used when a transaction is suspected to be counterfeit.
4890: Visa/Mastercard Fraud Monitoring Program | For transactions flagged under the fraud monitoring program.
Point of Interaction Error
Point of Interaction (POI) errors are also known as Dynamic Currency Conversion errors, Incorrect Cardholder Currency errors, and ATM Disputes. They arise when there are issues related to currency conversion, incorrect amounts being deducted from the cardholder's account, or discrepancies in ATM transactions.
4802: Requested/Required Information Illegible or Missing | Used when necessary information for processing the transaction is missing or illegible.
4831: Transaction Amount Differs | This applies when the amount charged differs from what the cardholder expected or agreed to.
4842: Late Presentment | This code is applied when a transaction is processed for payment after the allowed time frame.
4834: Point of Interaction Error | Used when there is an error at the point of sale or interaction, such as an incorrect amount charged, duplicate processing, or technical issues.
4846: Correct Transaction Currency Code Not Provided | Used when the wrong currency code is applied to a transaction.
This simple list of Mastercard chargeback reason codes can save you a lot of time and hassle. If you find any errors or omissions, please let me know.
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FAQ: Mastercard Chargeback Reason Codes
Can a merchant dispute a Mastercard chargeback?
Yes, merchants can dispute a Mastercard chargeback by providing evidence that contradicts the reason for the chargeback, such as proof of delivery, authorisation evidence, or documentation of the cardholder's agreement to the transaction terms.
What is the time frame for responding to a Mastercard chargeback?
The time frame for responding to a Mastercard chargeback varies, but generally, merchants have a limited window (often about 45 days) from the chargeback initiation to respond with evidence to dispute the claim.
Are there chargeback reason codes for subscription cancellations?
Yes, Mastercard includes chargeback reason codes for issues like cancelled recurring transactions, where a cardholder continues to be charged after cancelling a subscription or recurring service.