A reader called me today. She said she'd been ripped off by a downtown Tacoma restaurant. She said she and her husband spent about $140; she said they got bad service. When the bill came, she said, her husband paid by credit card. She said she told him to write $8 on the tip line. Which, she said, he did.
When their bank statement arrived, the woman said, she noticed the restaurant had charged them an additional $12.
The caller said she told her husband to dispute the charge with their bank. The bank, she said, contacted the restaurant and was able to get the restaurant to charge back what she considered to be a purloined tip. The restaurant, she said, also charged back the legitimate tip she and her husband gave their server.
She said she never contacted the restaurant. She said she's never going back there.
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The caller said she will mail me copies of her original receipt and of her bank records. I'll call her bank and the restaurant, too. I've tried to chase down stories like this before, but the people who complained didn't have the paperwork to prove it.
Which leads me to a simmering question: Diners, have you ever been the victims of unauthorized charges on your credit cards?
What did you do about it?