I opted out for credit card insurance - but I am being fraudulently charged for it repeatedly’..
I would like to raise my concerns regarding dubai first bank’s unfair practice of activating products without rightful authorization from its customers and repeatedly charging us for the same despite repeated requests for opting out of the service.
I opened a credit card account with dubai first bank in december 2014 and placed my request to opt out of the credit shield and accident insurance services. I contacted the bank’s call center on 5th january 2015 to inquire about the bill details and placed my request to opt out of the credit shield and accident insurance services. In my january 2015 statement, the unauthorized insurance charges (Credit shield and accident insurance) were reversed to my account.
In may 2015, following an offer by one of the bank’s representative, I opted for finance-on-phone offer for 6 months. However, to my shock, upon receipt of the succeeding statement dated 22/06/2015, I noticed that the credit shield and accident insurance fees were reflected again. I contacted the call centre and after numerous attempts through an endless loop of options on your automated routing systems, managed to speak to a representative.
I was informed that these insurance charges were pre-enrolled on my account and this was part of the bank’s ‘vague’ terms and conditions. This is an unfair practice as it was not clearly mentioned on the application form and I was mislead by the executive who filled my applicable form that the service could be deactivated any time after it is billed to a customer. After I placed my request for cancellation of the service, I received a call from another representative who unsuccessfully spent about 20 minutes explaining me the ‘good and useful features’ of the credit shield and accident insurance. Unmoved by his explanations, I still opted out of the service and eventually I was told that the credit shield and accident insurance services would be deactivated on my card which also implied that since the services are refused, the charges for the same would also be reversed. Finally I paid the full amount due less the credit shied fee considering that the charges were forcefully billed to me and that the same would be reversed as I was not liable to pay for the services that I never opted and consented for.
However, shockingly to my dismay, I was again billed the credit shield and accident insurance fees and additional finance charges of aed 27.85 in the july statement as penalty for not paying for the credit shield and accident insurance fees the previous month.
I again contacted the call centre and again after numerous attempts, managed to speak to a representative named mr shanky. To my dismay and shock, the representative informed me that there was no request for the cancellation of the credit shield insurance reflected in the system. He informed that he could not cancel the insurance and also refused to reverse the charges since the charges, once billed, can’t be reversed even if they are wrongly charged to us. However he acknowledged that the same charges have been reversed in january 2015 statement. The representative informed me that a complaint has been recorded and a bank’s representative from insurance division shall contact me soon. On asking for the complaint request number, the representative informed me that the bank does not have a system to generate any complaint or request number. After waiting for a call from the bank, I again contacted the customer care and spoke to mr ajay in the night. The representative informed that the matter shall be dealt by the insurance division and he showed his inability to further help me on the matter. He also refused to lodge my grievance; and refused to divulge any bank ombudsman's contact details or any email id where in I could lodge a complaint with the bank.
Finally, on 26th july 2015, I received a call from the quality division of the bank who repeated the same things as the customer care representatives. Seems all are trained to give the same responses to the customers. The qa representative, ms neeta, showed the bank's reluctance in reversing the credit shield fees even after the services have been cancelled. I feel so cheated... I am not asking to reverse any charges that I am bound to pay... I am just asking to reverse the charges for the services I refused to accept but the bank is forcing a customer by their forceful tactics and in the garb of their vague terms and conditions to pay the extra aed 287 for the credit shield services which are non-existent... I have never seen such draconian terms and conditions!
Just because I am an expat and banks realize the vulnerability of foreign people like me that they resort to such tactics... It looks as if the banks are forcing you to pay for nothing.. Just seems like an extortion...
Dubai first is expected to follow a certain code of conduct. Transparency and the need for customers to be informed in a clear way should be a priority. The bank must treat its customers fairly. In this situation, the bank failed to exercise these values and kept charging the wrong fee despite the reversal in the first statement itself. This amounts to unfair practices and cheating honest customers of their hard earned money.
They enrolled and charged customers repeatedly for products without the consent even after the services have been deactivated!!!.
They also keep charging the wrong amounts despite acknowledging the discontinued services.
Their so-called terms and conditions are not at all customer friendly... And are termed in a way so as to favor the bank only. Their whole sole motive is to get the people's hard money even if it is by levying charges to the customers for those services which have been cancelled or deactivated or not opted for!!!
I plead to gulf news’ team for helping me and resolving this matter with prime importance given to my case. Please!
Please feel free to contact me should you need any further information / clarification