Understanding SEPA Direct Debit disputes
Payment disputes can arise when using SEPA Direct Debit, and there are a few key points to understand about this process.
The Dispute Process
The SEPA Direct Debit system has a built-in dispute process for bank account holders. If a payment has been debited from an account, the account holder has a period of eight weeks during which they can dispute that payment through their bank. During this time, disputes can be lodged on a "no questions asked" basis, and any disputes made within this eight-week period are automatically honored. It's important to note that this dispute process is a feature of the SEPA Direct Debit payment method itself and is not something that either Fundraise Up or Stripe has control over.
Disputes Due to Account Problems
A dispute may also arise if the donor’s bank cannot debit their account due to some issue - for example, if the account is frozen or lacks sufficient funds. If the bank has already provided the funds to make a charge successful, and then encounters these problems, it will reclaim those funds by initiating a dispute.
Finality of Disputes
Unlike with credit card disputes, all SEPA Direct Debit disputes are final. There's no appeals process, so if a donor successfully disputes a payment, the only way to resolve the situation is to reach out to the donor directly. Keep in mind that Stripe does not provide information on whether a donor has sufficient funds or whether a bank account is active.