Disputes are an unfortunate occurrence with online purchases. Please read this article in its entirety, along with all included Stripe articles for the best possible outcome to your dispute.

I have a dispute, what does that mean?

A dispute (also known as a chargeback, inquiry, or retrieval) occurs when a customer questions your payment with their bank or card issuer. To process a chargeback, the bank/issuer creates a formal dispute, which immediately reverses the payment, removing it from your Stripe account. ‌

You can read more about how disputes work here:

How disputes work
Learn about the high level lifecycle of payment card disputes.

Does Partial.ly or Stripe control Disputes?

No, disputes and their outcome are controlled by the customer's bank. Partial.ly and Stripe can only submit your evidence for the bank's review.

Why did the customer dispute their payment(s)?

To see the dispute reason, please log into partial.ly/login and go to Payments > Disputes. There will be a column for the dispute reason.

How do I respond to the dispute?

You will recieve an email notification instructing you to either:

  1. Upload evidence from your Stripe account at www.stripe.com, or
  2. To email your evidence to support@partial.ly. Partial.ly Support will submit your evidence to Stripe for the customer's bank to review.

When is evidence due?

To see the evidence due date, please log into partial.ly/login and go to Payments > Disputes. There will be a column for the due date.

What evidence do I need to send?

Evidence should be appropriate for the reason for the dispute. For example, a response to a dispute with the reason “product not received” should have evidence that includes shipping information and any screenshots of package tracking.

For a comprehensive list of what evidence is appropriate for your dispute reason, please read the following Stripe article:

Dispute categories
Learn more about the reasons for disputes and how to respond to each.

Make sure to keep your evidence relevant and to the point. Card issuers review thousands of dispute responses every day. A long introduction about your product or company, complaint about the customer, or the unfairness of the dispute isn’t going to make your responses more compelling. Instead, provide only the facts surrounding the original purchase, using a neutral and professional tone. Stripe offers guidance in the following articles:

Responding to disputes
Learn how to effectively respond to disputes.
Dispute response best practices
Learn how to format the most convincing evidence to challenge a dispute.

What format should the evidence be in? Is there a limit?

Include large, clear images for review. Limitations are as follows:

  • Only PDF, JPEG, or PNG file types are accepted
  • The combined file size can’t be more than 4.5MB
  • The combined page count must be less than 50 pages
  • You can compress your files with tools such as Smallpdf

When submitting documents or images as evidence, use the following recommendations to make sure they can remain legible:

  • Use a 12 point font or larger
  • Make sure that documents are US Letter or A4 size, in portrait orientation (you can still add screenshots to your documents in landscape orientation)
  • Use bold text, callouts, or arrows to draw attention to pertinent information
  • Avoid using color highlighting

For Screenshots:

  • Crop the screenshot to the area of interest and circle any key components (for example, delivery confirmation or signature)
  • Use the text fields in the dispute evidence form to describe what the image contains and how it supports your response

The card issuer will consider a response incomplete and won’t review it if it contains any illegible text or data.

Don’t include audio or video files, requests to call or email for more information, or links to click for further information (e.g., file downloads or links to tracking information) because the card issuer evaluating the dispute won’t take action on these. Card issuers won’t call merchants or follow external links, so it’s important to submit all available evidence in the required formats listed above.

For more on format requirements, please view the following Stripe article:

Dispute response best practices
Learn how to format the most convincing evidence to challenge a dispute.

It is past the due date, can I still submit evidence?

Please email your evidence to support@partial.ly immediately to see if it can be submitted late.

Why did I lose the dispute?

Unfortunately, we are not given info as to why a dispute is lost. Although Partial.ly and Stripe transmit the evidence you provide against the dispute on your behalf, the dispute process, including the outcome, is managed entirely by the customer's bank. The bank’s decision is final and cannot be appealed or challenged.

The customer agreed to drop the dispute, now what?

Even though the customer has stated they’re withdrawing the dispute with their bank, it is still crucial to still send us your evidence. This will offer protection in the event the customer changes their mind, forgets to reach out to their bank to withdraw, or any other complication that may arise.

Please keep in mind, even if your customer offers to withdraw the dispute, the process  involves a rigid series of  formal communications between banking  entities that still results in a  lengthy resolution time. It may be  more efficient—and provide a better customer experience—to  accept  certain disputes and charge the customer again, if appropriate.  Even  when a dispute is withdrawn, it usually takes approximately 75 days  to  be finalized.

If you wish to accept the dispute, please email Partial.ly Support at support@partial.ly.

If you prefer the customer drop the dispute, you must still submit evidence against the dispute by the evidence due date. If you don’t submit evidence against the dispute, the formal communication structures between banks break down and the lack of evidence indicates an acceptance of the dispute -- this happens even if your customer has withdrawn, and funds will be stuck on their side, which is why it’s crucial you submit evidence against each dispute case.

The customer must notify their bank that they wish to withdraw or drop the dispute. Ask the customer for a copy of the letter of withdrawal or a screenshot of the re-billing as it appears on their statement once they have it.

Once received, please send this to Partial.ly Support at support@partial.ly.

You can read more about withdrawing a dispute here:

Dispute Withdrawals
Learn about what it means when a cardholder withdraws their payment dispute

I would like the disputed payment(s) to be returned to the customer.

You can accept a dispute, effectively agreeing with the cardholder that the dispute was valid for the reason given. Accepting a dispute isn’t considered an admission of wrongdoing and is sometimes the most appropriate response. The customer has already received their refund through the dispute process—if you agree with the refund, it’s best to accept the dispute. This is the action you should take if you don’t intend to respond and submit evidence. Although accepting disputes doesn’t negatively affect your business any further, it’s not a viable alternative to an effective refund or returns policy. Dispute activity is calculated based upon the disputes received, not won or lost, so dispute prevention is critical.

If you wish to accept a dispute, please email us at support@partial.ly.

How can I prevent disputes in the future?

To learn more about how to prevent future disputes, see:

Preventing disputes and fraud
Learn how to best protect against disputes and fraudulent payments.

Have more questions?

Email us at support@partial.ly or checkout Stripe's dispute center:

Disputes and fraud
Learn what disputes are, how the process works, and how to prevent them from happening.

More Resources: