Did you sign up to a yearly Tastecard membership without realising it?

Have Tastecard taken money from you via PayPal that you don’t remember authorising and you haven’t been able to get it back?

Here is how I got my Tastecard membership cancelled and my money refunded

Don’t forget to let me know how you get on with your refund via Twitter:

Tastecard’s stance is that since 2006 they have been making it very clear that the Tastecard is on an ongoing subscription and it’s therefore your fault if the card renews and they take the money without you realising it. They appear generally belligerent and unwilling to negotiate about refunds. Their compromise seems to be that they can change the name of the card owner and cancel the following year’s subscription but nothing more

In my opinion, their terms aren’t clear enough and I don’t think it’s feasible for them to rely on a box that was ticked a year ago. For example, with me, they didn’t even have my contact details. The first I knew about my reoccurring subscription was when £35.99 disappeared from my bank account! Did you know that principle 4 of the Data Protection Act (1998) requires businesses to ‘keep personal data accurate and up to date’?

Anyway, here is how I got a refund:

  1. Firstly, I complained directly to Tastecard. If you do the same, they will likely refuse to give you a refund so be sure to make sure they confirm that this is their final decision. Inform them that you will be opening a PayPal dispute, talking to the Financial Ombudsman Service, and talking to Trading Standards. If they still don’t give you a refund:
  2. Secondly, I opened a disputed transaction claim with PayPal for unauthorised payments taken from my account. If you do the same and still don’t get your refund:
  3. Thirdly I opened a claim with the Financial Ombudsmen Service (FOS) and
  4. Complained to Trading Standards

My case was based on the fact that I believed Tastecard mislead me in terms of:

  • the reoccurring payment they intended to take – this was not clear when I signed up
  • their terms and conditions were not clear
  • I wasn’t made aware that I was signing up to a reoccurring payment
  • they failed to give me notice about the money they would be taking (mainly due to the fact they didn’t have my contact details)

Useful numbers

Here are some useful numbers and links:

Citizen’s advice telephone: 03454 04 05 06

FOS complaints: https://help.financial-ombudsman.org.uk/help

Find your local trading standards: https://www.gov.uk/find-local-trading-standards-office

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