The most trusted and popular consumer complaints website
Explore your opportunities! Create an account or Sign In

Certegy Check Authorization Services / check authorization denied for no reason

1 United States Review updated:

I had my check denied at two big box stores this week. First at Circuit City and then at Best Buy. This has never happened to me before. My husband and I have excellent credit with no history of overdrafts for over three decades. There was plenty of money in the checking account. At Circuit City, I was so 'rattled' and insulted, I walked out. But at Best Buy I went ahead and paid with my credit card.

I checked my accounts online to make sure I saw no unusual activity, then went to the bank (Bank of America) to discuss it with them. They confirmed that there was no reason for the denial and wanted me to open a Visa with them. The bank person excitedly told me that I was preapproved for a $12000 limit. I declined.

I then went home and called Certegy. When I finally got connected to someone, they said that there was no negative activity in my file and that they couldn't give me a solid reason for the check being denied but that it likely had to do with the computer algorithm they use and that somehow my check fit some sort of profile. BUT, if I would like to fill out a 'Gold Application' and give them a lot of personal information, they would be happy to give me a 'pre-approval' status so that I won't have this difficulty in the future.

This is some sort of scam - I sent a complaint to the FTC but I got a polite note back with no action on their part. I also sent a complaint to the State of CT Consumer Affairs - don't know if that will go anywhere. In the meantime, I'm seeing all these complaints on the web and the list of stores using this Certegy company is extensive.

I thought about going with a debit card but I'm not sure that I won't eventually run into the same problem because Certegy also does debit card authorization. From my reading about this, I've found that Certegy is gathering information about our buying habits - what we are buying, where we buy, when we buy, everything. They can get that from the debit swipe also.

It also occurred to me that many of these large retailers offer their own credit cards - so if your check is denied by Certegy, you might be tempted to open a credit card with the merchant.

I don't know how to get around this other than buying everything with cash but I think that's unrealistic in today's world.

Sort by: UpDate | Rating


  • Tr
      9th of Aug, 2007
    0 Votes

    I have been experiencing the same thing over the past 3 weeks: at Sears, Best Buy and now last nite, Youkers. I too have more than enough funds to cover the checks. I have talked to Certegy on two occasions, including last night where I actually talked to a supervisor there. He told me that my $77 check to Younkers was declined because my routing numbers were SIMILAR to those of someone who had experienced some type of fraud with their account.

    How long as it taken for anyone who has had their checks declined to have them approved again?

    Please feel free to email me at

  • Pr
      4th of Nov, 2007
    0 Votes

    I. too. have experienced the same problem with Certegy. They denied two of my checks that were written to Big Lots and Albertson's. When I called Certegy, they gave me the exact same reason stating that there was no negative activity on my account and that I should apply for the Certegy Gold application. It's a complete rip-off! Not to mention embarrassing. I am so upset about this and don't know what to do about it. Please email me at if you have any answers.


  • Ka
      6th of Nov, 2007
    0 Votes

    I also have had this same issue with Certegy!

    I've had two checks that were declined. I reported a complaint to, so if you wish to know the details of what happened to me.

    Right now I'm kind of seeing how many people this company is doing this kind of stuff to also.

  • Ci
      12th of May, 2008
    0 Votes

    Has anyone tried making complaints to the Businesses using this company? I am sure they are losing many customers. Caution: I love computers as much as anyone but if this is what these programs are doing today just think what can happen in the future.

  • Ta
      27th of May, 2008
    0 Votes

    I was the " screaming Woman" you may have saw @ Sears ... I can assure you the manager will remember me !!! Certegy is full of ****!!! and it happend again 5 months later @ Best Buy!! I really like that store ...but...WHAT ELSE CAN WE DO ??? I refuse to fill out that membership thay sent me...and give them more info on me?? We must keep complaining to merchants so thay will change...Walgreens did!!! one point for us !!!

  • Jo
      4th of Jun, 2008
    0 Votes

    Certegy are rip-off artists. I had the displeasure of working with them in a b2b relationship. They promised a cheque guarantee service, but then rejected any claims we made for trivial reasons. They insulted a number of our customers. They ignored our complaints and continued to charge us for their service, even when we asked if we could cancel. This is a perfect example of a company with too much power who manhandles everyone around them and does not care about the individual. If you are a business owner and you are approached by them, the sales pitch may sound good, but trust me, run for the hills!

  • Jo
      17th of Jul, 2008
    0 Votes

    Today I was turned down why buying $776.94 worth of parts for my company with a company check. The parts store told me it was a code 2 decline and that there was nothing wrong with my account; the system just didn't like my check. They also said that if I wanted more information, that I would have to call Cetergy. I paid with a credit card and left the store. Next I called my bank to find out what was going on; they told me that I had plenty of money to cover the amount. When I called Cetergy the explanation I got was, "it was the luck of the draw”;"we don't see anything wrong with your account or history, the system just didn't like that check". The person even went so far as to say, “if you go back in an hour the check will probably clear". I called the store back to explain, but I'm sure they didn't believe me. Had it not been for complaint boards like this I would have thought this were an isolated incident.

  • Am
      7th of Aug, 2008
    0 Votes

    How long as it taken for anyone who has had their checks declined to have them approved again?

    A week, possibly longer.

    It's good to know I'm not the only one with problems. Tonight - after yet another check was rejected - the manager of the store told me *HIS* check was rejected by Certegy for unusual spending.

  • Jo
      22nd of Aug, 2008
    +1 Votes

    I am having the same problem only the company is GLOBAL PAYMENTS!!! I have filed a complaint with the Comsumer Complaint Division of our Attorney General's office but they have a back log and was told it will probably be at least 2 weeks before they can even look at my complaint. Speedway is the business using this company GLOBAL PAYMENTS and the way they treat you is criminal. I will be filing a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission not that it will get me anywhere but at least I will have one more person to add to my list of places I am trying to get some short of answer from.

    It is one of the biggest scams and I cannot believe that no one is doing anytihng about it. I have a feeling it is only going to get worse so get ready to batten down the hatches because pretty soon no one will be able to make a purchase unless you have the company credit card, debit card or other means by which they can obtain information about you. It just makes me furious...

  • Jo
      22nd of Aug, 2008
    +1 Votes

    I have been reading other complaints my gosh there are a lot of companies i.e., Certegy, Chexsystems, Global Payments what in the world is going on...??? Just how much damage has to be done before someone get a handle on companies such as these. Paying by debit card or credit card is just playing into their hands. They want people to take out their cards they make money off of them...I will be buying my gas at another service station and if Speedway wishes to continue a business relationship with GLOBAL PAYMENTS so be it. Pretty Global Payments will own Speedway...and so on and so on and so on.

  • Je
      20th of Oct, 2008
    0 Votes

    I had the same problem when trying to buy a laptop at Circuit City. Other than the less than exceptional service at the store my check got denied. I had enough money in the account for more than one of the laptops, yet they didn't take the check because of Certegy. I had no other form of payment to give. Another person couldn't even order it for me online and allow me to pick it up because of "policy." I left with a sense that they really didn't want $1, 000+. I considered buying from Best Buy after leaving. If the Best Buy here uses Certegy then I doubt I'll have any luck.

  • El
      14th of Nov, 2008
    0 Votes

    I have been turned down at both Cracker Barrel, and K-Mart. I have been totally embarrassed and humiliated. I called both times and all they could tell me was that I'd never had a bounced check and I had plenty of money in my account, but based on a 40 year old study - I somehow fit the persona of identity theft. They sent me their GOLD form, which I refuse to fill out because if anything that sets anyone up who works there to steal my identity. THIS HAS TO STOP!

  • Pa
      24th of Nov, 2008
    0 Votes

    My husband was turned down at Sears AFTER he had 4 new tires mounted on his truck and 10 minutes before the store closed. He ended up putting the charge on a credit card. Our account had 4, 000.00 in it at the time.

  • Th
      25th of Nov, 2008
    0 Votes

    This is a stupid service. My husband has been turned away from Wal-Mart this morning after trying to cash his goverment issued, state check. (He works for the state) Certegy says they can not cash the check because of certain things that indicate there might be crimal activity. (Oh, what? He might be a criminal because in this economy he doesn't trust the banks and instead of getting direct deposit to our bank, he asks that his job issues him a paper check???) On the slip of receipt issued at the store it says that we have a right to know what is in his check transactions file and can request a free copy, so we called the # provided...
    We were told that there is NOTHING in the file!! But how can that be if his check is not allowed to be cashed??? Well, they told us that they can deny cashing a check based on other people's criminal behavior. It's BS. THAT is what it is. They won't send the report, because according to them, there is nothing in it, however this is the fourth time that my husband has been denied at the same Wal-Mart. They will cash two checks and then deny the third. So, if this denial is based on NOTHING then why has he been not allowed to cash his check so many times? WHAT IS IN THAT FILE THAT THEY WON'T SEND TO US, EVEN THOUGH THEY ARE REQUIRED TO ACCORDING TO THE FAIR CREDIT REPORTING ACT????!!!
    He asked to file a complaint with the company, and guess what!?, They couldn't do that over the phone! (BIG SURPRIZE!) They provided him with a snail mail address so he could send his complaint by mail.
    This company should not exsist. I see all these other complaints and wonder how many people have to say something before anything is done!!!

  • He
      25th of Mar, 2009
    0 Votes

    I think people just need to realize that checks are not a guaranteed form of payment and no merchant, company, etc have to accept anyones checks at any given time, if your bank will not guarantee your check why should companies like telecheck, certegy, or others do. Get real checks are Iou's until they are actually collected upon from the bank.

  • Be
      15th of May, 2009
    0 Votes

    I went it a local gas station. I needed to buy something for a friend. I made my purchase and went to pay by check. My total was $25.89. My check was declined. I too have outstanding credit and have never had a returned check. I was so embarassed, two people in line behind me. I had over $1, 400.00 in the bank and had no clue what this was about.

    I did pay by debit card(from the same account as my checks). The clerk gave me a phone number to contact Certegy. I called them and finally spoke with a person. All in all, they told me I was declined for fraud protection on my part. Like they were doing me a favor!

    I then informed the "customer care" rep. that if I had pumped gas in my car and my check was declined and had NO other form of payment, I could have went to JAIL. He could only tell me that he was sorry for the inconveince. Had that happened, he would have been more than sorry.

    I was then offered some sort of scam that he tried to get me to sign up for. I said thanks but no, I would not be doing any business with a company like this.

  • Ka
      7th of Sep, 2009
    0 Votes

    I had the same thing happen at Best Buy check was declined for no good reason, A class action suit should be taken against Certegy.

  • Ps
      12th of Dec, 2009
    0 Votes

    I had the same thing happen to me at Pep Boys. This was really STUDIP. I just got brand new tires instaled and my bill came out at 367.43. They would not accept my personal check. I also called my bank to verify funds and account #, they said everything is ok and good to go. The company would not allow my transaction to go through b/c certegy denied it. Thye told me if they over ride certegy, they will lose there job b/c certegy will fnd out which employee when against them and get them fired. These is just a rip off. They tod me to go to amscot and cash my check. I was not going to pay $35.00 for cashing my check. I had a friend drive and pay for my tires and I paid him back.

  • Ab
      21st of Jun, 2010
    0 Votes


  • Sh
      25th of Nov, 2010
    0 Votes

    dont ever do business with certegy or global payments. they are crooks. when you contact them for help they arent willing to help in any way. worst companies around. never ever use them

Post your comment