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Section 75 refunds

Free protection for ALL credit card spending
Section 75 super hero

Section 75 is a little-known law which means your plastic must protect anything you buy over £100 for free, so if there's a problem you can get your money back.

This Q&A guide shows you how to maximise your protection, plus when Section 75 covers you. There's also free template letters for making Section 75 claims.

Your secret financial super-hero: Section 75 laws mean your plastic must protect purchases over £100 for free, so if there's a problem you can get your money back.

This full detailed Q&A guide shows you how to maximise your protection, when Section 75 covers you and when it doesn't and includes free template letters for making Section 75 claims to your credit provider.

While every effort's been made to ensure this article's accuracy, it doesn't constitute legal advice tailored to your individual circumstances. If you act on it, you acknowledge that you do so at your own risk. We can't assume responsibility and don't accept liability for any damage or loss which may arise as a result of your reliance upon it.

What is Section 75?

It's a vital law made in the UK in the 1970s that means your credit provider must take the same responsibility a retailer does if things go wrong with a purchase. In a nutshell...

Pay for something costing between £100 and £30,000 on credit and the provider's equally liable if something goes wrong.

This isn't the credit provider being nice. It's a legal protection put in place so that you're never in the position of paying off debt for something you didn't receive or wasn't as it should've been. Whether it's a flight, kitchen, computer or anything else, pay on a credit card, store card or with store instalment credit and the credit provider's responsible too.

The law behind this

This all comes from Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974, hence why this is sexily named Section 75. It rather impenetrably says…

75. — (1) If the debtor under a debtor-creditor-supplier agreement falling within section 12(b) or (c) has, in relation to a transaction financed by the agreement, any claim against the supplier in respect of a misrepresentation or breach of contract, he shall have a like claim against the creditor, who, with the supplier, shall accordingly be jointly and severally liable to the debtor.

Read it in full

What does Section 75 cover?

Section 75 is fantastic protection. It means if you order something and if the retailer goes kaput, you can still claim your money back from the credit card provider (even if you've since closed your credit card account).

Should the bill or the item cost over £100?

This is where it gets quite tricky. The law is plain; the £100 is for the cash value of a 'single item' (so excluding any fees, and charges such as delivery). Yet single items aren't always that straightforward.

A trick to help - pay the deposit by credit card and you're covered

The law's specific on this, you get the protection for the whole cost of an item or service, even if you only pay for a part of it on credit. The only condition is that what you're buying costs more than £100 and less than £30,000.

Quick questions

Are overseas and web purchases protected?

I booked tickets for me and five friends. Are we all protected?

A concert was cancelled, but I'd paid for trains/hotel. Can I claim for associated costs?

Which credit card should I pick?

I can't get a credit card. Can I still get Section 75 cover?

What's not covered by Section 75?

As always with these things, a few exceptions escape the safety net. First is anything to do with the purchase of land - this is controlled by regulation from the Financial Conduct Authority. But there's other purchases that escape the safety net too...

Items costing less than £100 or where you use a debit card or charge card

Goods/services paid for by a secondary cardholder

Goods/services bought through intermediaries - travel agent, group-buying sites etc

Using the credit card indirectly

Where the credit provider & supplier are the same - eg, catalogue accounts

Hire purchase agreements - car finance, some electrical goods etc

How do I make a Section 75 claim?

Firstly, remember this is a legal right. Martin's claimed under Section 75 a couple of times, once it was easy, the other time the provider kicked up a fuss. While credit providers are getting better, many will still talk about their own procedures.

If the retailer/supplier has gone bust

Here it's clear-cut, you can't go to anyone else so the only option is to claim from the credit company. Simply call your credit provider and tell it what you're doing. Actually say: "I am making a claim under Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act". It should then send you a claim form.

Complaints about a product and the retailer/supplier isn't bust

Here you may be met by "that's not our business, go to the retailer". Actually you don't have to, it is its business and you've a legal right to redress. The law makes clear that the credit company is jointly responsible, so there's no 'first point of call'.

Of course, if the credit provider went bust, then while you could become a creditor, there is no protection from this. Yet for both the retailer and creditor at the same time to go bust, you'd have been very unlucky.

New protection for £30k+ purchases

Section 75 covers purchases made on credit between £100 and £30,000. So a car costing £40,000 wouldn't be covered. However, changes made in 2010 mean that certain credit agreements above £30,000 are now covered.