RBI has launched the Ombudsman scheme for easing the issues of the masses who indulge in digital payments on a regular basis.

These include all from online businesses to the customers (public) who prefer shopping online frequently.

Now, it has become easy to file complaints against digital payment companies with regard to transactions.

Digital payment companies provide the services to the merchants via banks. Be it prepaid payments instruments, UPI, BHIM-UPI, e-wallets, BBPS, and so on, one can now get their issues resolved quicker than before.

With the ombudsman offices located in 21 areas across 19 cities, the issues can be resolved with the digital payments company in much lesser time.

Although the scheme maintains that one needs to first file the complaint with the service-providing company and wait for 30 days for the same to respond.

The types of complaints include:

• unauthorized electronic funds transfer
• inability to transfer funds to your bank account
• failure to load funds into the wallet within a reasonable period of time
• failure to make a fund transfer of payment
• failure to refund the amount back to you in case of a failed transactions
• inability to implement stop payment transactions
• complaints related to UPI
• complaints related to Bharat Bill Payment System
• complaints related to Bharat QR Code
• complaints related to UPI QR Code
• Non-adherence to any other instruction of the Reserve Bank on Mobile / Electronic fund transfer

But, this does not imply that the responsibility of the payment service provider ends here.

The payment service provider needs to ensure that it tries to resolve the grievances/complaints of the customers from its own end.

RBI notification has specified it clearly for the service providers to take full responsibility for resolving customer disputes arising out of transactions enabled on third-party platforms.

How to File a Complaint?

Step 1:
The first and foremost step is to file a complaint with the service providing company/digital payments company itself and wait for 30 days for the same to respond with an action.

In case the service provider does not address the issue of the complainant positively, with a solution, one can approach the ombudsman meant for digital payments within the jurisdiction where the service provider’s office is located.

In case of a centralized operation provided by the company, the billing address will itself decide the relevant ombudsman for the complainant.

One can file the complaint online without needing to visit the office.

One can file the complaint online to the ombudsman’s official email address available on RBI’s official notification (dated 31 January 2019) in regard to interlinks.
Step 2:
When you do not receive a satisfactory response from the digital payments company, you need to approach the Ombudsman, within a year of the rejection of the complaint or within 13 months of filing the complaint.

Only if the case is an exceptional one, the ombudsman office will accept a delay.

Your complaint will not be entertained if already filed with another forum, or if your grievance does not fall under eligible grounds of complaints.

Step 3:
If you are not satisfied with the ombudsman’s reply as well, you can write to the appellate authority, that is, the office of the deputy governor that is in charge of RBI’s department for overseeing the ombudsman.

Your next resort in case all the above fails is the consumer forum or the court.

Compensation Expected:

The compensation one can expect is Rs 1 lakh in lieu of loss of customer’s time, expenses incurred, and mental agony.

Additionally, the maximum compensation that the digital payments ombudsman can award is Rs 20 lakh.

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