Few credit card users know that most consumer purchases are backed with an additional layer of warranty protection from their credit card processor. The card issuer does not provide this service, but Visa, MasterCard, and American Express all offer warranties when you use their network.
Here’s how credit card warranties work:
Automatic enrollment – Each time you make a qualifying purchase, it is enrolled automatically into the warranty system. You do not need to do anything to start the warranty period – it begins automatically, requiring your help only if you need to make a claim.
Longer protection – Warranties from credit cards come into effect after the manufacture’s warranty period. Thus, if a product has a manufacture’s warranty of 6 months, the credit card warranty will come into effect after that period. In most cases, credit card processors give consumers up to one year of additional warranty support for consumer purchases.
How to claim your warranty
Claiming a credit card warranty is as simple as having the necessary documentation for your purchase. Be sure to file away relevant information and documents including:
Receipts for purchases – A receipt will be necessary to claim any warranty. If you shop online, you can always pull up an electronic receipt online when you need to make a claim. Brick and mortar stores rarely allow you to do the same, so hold on tight to original paper receipts for such purchases.
Warranty documentation – You’ll need to have proof of a manufacture’s warranty to proceed through claims. Warranty information is almost always included in print in a product’s packaging. Warranties can also be found in documentation about how to use your new product – so check the guides that come with your purchase for proof of a warranty.
SKU – A SKU is not necessary for claims, however it does make the process much easier. Like an ISBN for books, a SKU is a number that uniquely identifies the product you purchased. Having a SKU can speed up the claims process and ensure that you are fairly compensated for your existing warranty.