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How To File A Complaint With The Digital Payments Ombudsman?

Olga Robert

You can now file a complaint against digital payment service providers like prepaid payments instruments, e-wallets, etc with ombudsman offices in 21 locations across 19 cities. At end of January, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) launched the Ombudsman Scheme for Digital Transactions (OSDT).

Note that the complaint has to be about a service provided by the digital payments company and not related to the bank account linked to it. The grievances related to banking services will have to be submitted to the banking ombudsman.

Types of complaints

Examples of complications with digital payment services that you will need to file a complaint on:

  • 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

The RBI notification in this regard also specifies that it will also be the responsibility of the payment service provider to resolve customer disputes arising out of transactions enabled on third-party platforms.

How to file a complaint?

The first stage is to file a complaint with the digital payments company itself and wait for 30 days. If the service provider does not address your issue satisfactorily, you can file a complaint with the ombudsman within the jurisdiction where the service provider's office is located.

If it is a centralized operation provided by the company, your billing address will decide the ombudsman relevant to you.
You do not need to visit the office. You can file the complaint online to the ombudsman's official email address available on RBI's official notification (dated 31 January 2019) in this regard with interlinks.

The form to file the complaint is also available in the same notification.

You have to submit personal details, supporting documents, the remedial procedure that you are seeking to your problem and a declaration.

Note

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

Compensation

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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