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How to stop payment on a debit/credit card purchase

Updated February 21, 2017

Both credit cards and debit cards generally allow you to stop payment on transactions by disputing the charges. You can dispute an individual charge by calling the customer service number associated with the credit or debit card. In some cases, credit and debit card companies will issue you a temporary credit while they complete the investigation of your dispute. If your dispute is upheld, the temporary credit will become permanent.

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  1. Call the customer service number for the credit card or debit card. You can typically find the customer service phone number printed on the back of the card.

  2. Listen to the touch-tone prompts and select the option to speak to a customer service representative.

  3. Tell the customer service representative that you would like to dispute a transaction.

  4. Give the customer service representative details about the transaction. Details include the name of the merchant, the date of the transaction and the amount of the transaction. Tell the customer service representative why you want to dispute the transaction. Some card companies, such as Capital One, will issue you a temporary credit pending an investigation of your dispute. They do this because they want to hold on to their best customers.

  5. Wait for the dispute paperwork to come in the mail. It may take 10 to 14 business days to receive the paperwork. Verify the information in the paperwork and sign and date the forms.

  6. Mail the paperwork to the address listed on the form.

  7. Wait for the credit card or debit card company to complete the investigation of the dispute. This process may take up to 30 days. At the conclusion of the investigation, the company will notify you by mail or e-mail about the final outcome of the dispute. If your dispute is accepted, the temporary credit will become permanent. If your dispute is denied, the temporary credit is reversed.

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About the Author

Since 1992 Matt McGew has provided content for on and offline businesses and publications. Previous work has appeared in the "Los Angeles Times," Travelocity and "GQ Magazine." McGew specializes in search engine optimization and has a Master of Arts in journalism from New York University.

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