Direct Express Investigations

Are you a Direct Express cardholder and are a victim of fraud? Do you need help filing a dispute with the Direct Express dispute resolution department? Are you wondering how Direct Express investigations work? We can help.

In this post, we will detail the growing incidence of fraud with Direct Express Cardholders. We will provide examples of Direct Express investigations conducted by news organizations into Direct Express fraud.

We will explain what the federal regulations state regarding credit and debit card fraud and what obligations card issuers have towards cardholders regarding fraud.

Furthermore, we will then provide you with a step by step process on how to speak to a live person at Direct Express to file your complaint or dispute.

Finally, we will explain how the Direct Express dispute resolution process works and what you can expect after you have filed a dispute.

NOTE: If you would like to write a review and rate your experience with Direct Express Customer Service or Dispute Resolution Department, see the review and ratings form immediately below the end of this article.

"Direct Express Investigations"

This post will cover:

  • Growing Reports of Fraud on Direct Express Debit Cards
  • Federal Banking Rules Regarding Debit Card Fraud
  • Direct Express Dispute Resolution Process
  • How to Reach a Live Person at Direct Express and file a dispute

Growing Reports of Fraud on Direct Express Debit Cards

There have been countless media investigations of cardholder complaints of increased fraudulent activity on Direct Express debit card, which has even led to lawsuits.

The media has reported horror stories of Direct Express cardholders targeted by fraud and left with no money as they battled to get their money back.

For example, this story by the local CBS station in Sacramento, California, shows how serious the problem is.

As the video below shows, Yasmin Snider of Citrus Heights relies heavily on her monthly Social Security payment of $618 to rent a room, buy food, and her medicine.

Her monthly payments are deposited on her government-issued Direct Express Prepaid MasterCard.

When Snider went to use her Direct Express MasterCard in the spring of 2018, she learned her entire $618 payment was taken.

She called Direct Express and learned somebody withdrew her entire monthly Social Security Payment from an ATM in Florida.

She does not know anybody in Florida and more importantly, has never been to Florida.

She did not have a penny to her name and was almost out of medicine. She had no money for food and was forced to rely on friends to feed her.

She was told by Direct Express customer service that it could take up to 90-days to investigate the fraud. In the meantime, she had no money.

Thousands of cardholders have had this experience and in some cases, even after Direct Express conducts an investigation, they are not able to get their money returned to their card.

Watch the video below for her full story.

In another investigative reporting by News 12 in Ohio, highlights the struggles Gwen Stemmerding of Clifton, OH has experienced with her Direct Express debit card.

Gwen relies on Social Security Disability money. She receives monthly payments on a Direct Express debit card and uses that to pay all her bills.

However, according to the report, one time when she tried to buy something, she discovered the money was missing from the card.

“The cashier kept trying to put the card through, and then she said let’s try another way with your passcode, your PIN. So I tried my PIN, and my PIN was invalid. Somebody had gotten into my account and stole my money,” Stemmerding said.

As soon as Stemmerding realized she was the victim of fraud, she notified Direct Express.

Direct Express canceled the card, sent her a replacement card but did nothing about replacing the money that was stolen.

“They said, ‘Well, there’s transactions on here for Saks Fifth Avenue. Somebody transferred $1,000 to JP Morgan Chase.’ I said, ‘Well, I don’t go to Saks and shop for that much, and I don’t have a JP Morgan Chase account,” Stemmerding said.

In all, more than $1,500 was stolen, even though she never lost the debit card.

Watch the video below for her entire story.

Federal Banking Rules Regarding Debit Card Fraud

Federal banking rules protect all Americans from Credit and Debit card fraud. When it comes to debit cards, the regulation states that once you report fraud, the bank has 10-days to investigate.

However, If the financial institution needs more time to investigate and the consumer has already submitted the paperwork requested by the institution, they’re supposed to get a provisional credit on their account.

The provisional credit is supposed to be provided while the financial institution takes the extended time it needs to complete its investigation (up to 90 days).

Direct Express Liability Rules

According to Direct Express’ website:

If my card is lost or stolen, is my money protected? Yes. Your liability for unauthorized transactions is limited if your card is reported timely to Direct Express® as lost or stolen. Under the federal law known as Regulation E, cardholders who dispute a transaction within 2 business days of learning of the loss or theft cannot be held liable for more than $50. Those who dispute a charge within 60 days cannot be held liable for more than $500. Treasury was able to negotiate an additional one month cushion for Direct Express® cardholders so that Direct Express® cardholders have 90 days to report any unauthorized transactions and not be liable for more than $500.

How to Dispute a Transaction with Direct Express

"How to Dispute a Transaction with Direct Express"

If you a victim of fraud and would like to file a dispute with the Direct Express Card dispute resolution department, follow the steps below:

Step 1 – Call Customer Service

The first step is to call the Direct Expres Customer service as soon as you see a charge you did not authorize or you believe you’ve been a victim of fraud.

Here is what you will need to provide when you call:

  • Your name and Direct Express Card number.
  • Description of the transaction you are unsure about, and an explanation of why you believe it is in error or why you need more information.
  • The dollar amount and the date of the transaction you are disputing.

You can call Direct Express Service at:

—     Customer Service: 1-888-741-1115

—     Hearing-impaired: 1-866-569-0447

—     International: 1-765-778-6290 (Collect)

Customer Service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

You have up to  90 days to file a dispute as soon as you become aware of the unauthorized transaction as explained above :

Step 2 – Complete Dispute Form

Next, you will most likely be required by customer service to fill out a formal dispute by completing the dispute resolution form.

The Direct Express customer service agent will give you instructions about the dispute form, how it will be sent to you, and how much time you have to complete it.

Typically, you will be given 10 business days to submit the dispute form the date of your call.

Step 3 – What Happens Next

Once your dispute is submitted successfully (meaning you have provided all the requested information and supporting documentation), here is what happens next:

Direct Express Dispute Department will Investigate

The Direct Express Dispute Resolution Department will investigate your claim.

They will determine whether an error occurred within 10 business days after you submit your form. During this time, there will be no credit to your account.

If they find that your dispute is valid, they will make corrections promptly.

When a Temporary Credit is Applied

Sometimes, they may need more time to complete their investigation, up to 90 days.

Should they need more time to look into your dispute, they will credit your card within 10 business days for the amount you think is in error.

This means that you will have the money during the time it takes for them to complete their investigation.

As soon as the investigation is completed, they will let you know the results within three business days.

If they found that there was no error, they will send you a written explanation.

Note that if after their investigation, they find that your claim was not valid, any provisional amount credited to you will be taken back from your account.

Direct Express Dispute Timeline

One of the biggest issues cardholders face is not paying attention to dispute timelines when filing their dispute.

You have 90 days to report an error to Direct Express as soon as you find out about any unauthorized transaction on your account.

If you call Direct Express Customer Service and they ask you to submit your dispute in writing via the dispute form, you have 10 business days to submit the request from the date of your call.

Once they receive your dispute form, Direct Express will get back to you within 10 business days (Note that during the initial 10 day period, there will be no credit to your account).

When they contact you within 10 business days, they will provide you with one of the following:

  1. They found that your dispute is valid, and will make corrections promptly.
  2. They may need more time to complete their investigation, up to 90 days.

Should they need more time to look into your dispute, they will credit your card within 10 business days for the amount you think is in error.

Note that if after their investigation, they find that your claim was not valid, any provisional amount credited to you will be taken back from your account.

How to talk to a live person at Direct Express and file a dispute

Step 1

Call Direct Express Customer Service toll-free at 1-888-741-1115 (available 24/7)

Step 2

For English, (press 1), for Spanish (Press 2), for all other languages (press 3)

Step 3

If you have your Direct Express card with you, then enter your 16-digit debit card number.

Step 4

After entering your card number, a Direct Express customer service agent will answer your call shortly.

You may be put on a brief hold if all agents are currently assisting other customers when you call.

If you do not have your Direct Express card with you, then (Press 2) to access your account using your Social Security number.

If you do not have your Direct Express card number or Social Security number, here is what you need to do to talk to a live person:

Wait while the auto-attendant goes through the messages below a few times, then you will be transferred automatically to a customer service representative:

  • We are sorry, we did not receive your selection – Please try again, your 16 digit card number is in front of your card, To re-enter your card number, press 1
  • To access your card account information using your Social Security number, press 2
  • To find out the status of your previously ordered card. press 3
  • If your card has been lost, stolen or damaged, press 4

After the system goes through the above message three or four times, you will be transferred automatically to a customer service representative.

Other callers have reported longer hold times. If you do not have time to wait on hold, you may have to try calling at different times of the day to see if you are able to talk to a representative sooner.

Direct Express Lawsuits Summary

We hope this post on Direct Express Lawsuits was helpful.

If you have further questions about Direct Express Debit MasterCard, please let us know in the comments section below.

Be sure to check out our other articles on Direct Express Dispute Resolution Department, Direct Express Card Locked, and Direct Express Lawsuits

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