Digital revolution is already on and the number of digital transactions is witnessing a quantum leap. However, failed transactions and delayed settlement of funds also pose a threat to its popularity. Taking cognizance of this, the RBI had mooted the setting up of a Ombudsman for Digital Transactions and has today introduced the Ombudsman Scheme for Digital Transactions, 2019.

The scheme, which will come into force from January 31, 2019, is largely aimed at providing for a mechanism of Ombudsman for redressal of complaints against deficiency in services related to digital transactions.

In order to avoid confusions, the RBI has clearly defined ‘Digital Transaction’ to mean a payment transaction in a seamless system effected without the need for cash at least in one of the two legs, if not in both. This includes transactions made through digital / electronic modes wherein both the originator and the beneficiary use digital / electronic medium to send or receive money.”

Some of the instances where the user can approach the Ombudsman are:

  • Failure to load funds within reasonable time in wallets / cards
  • Failure to refund within reasonable time /refusal to refund in case of unsuccessful / returned / rejected / cancelled/ transactions
  • Failure to effect online payment / fund transfer within reasonable time
  • Failure to reverse the amount debited from customer account in cases of failed payment transactions within prescribed time line
  • Failure in crediting funds to the beneficiaries’ account
  • Failure to return within reasonable time the payment to the originating member in case of failure to credit the funds to the beneficiary’s account.

As a complainant, you will have to send the complaint in writing after signing it in a fixed format or carrying certain mandatory details. A complaint made through electronic means may be accepted by the Ombudsman for Digital Transactions.

‘Ombudsman for Digital Transactions’ will mean any officer of the Reserve Bank. The Reserve Bank may appoint one or more of its officers in the rank of Chief General Manager or General Manager to be known as Ombudsman for Digital Transactions.

Any person may file a complaint free of cost with the Ombudsman for Digital Transactions with the one in whose territorial jurisdiction the billing/ declared address of the customer is located.