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June 15, 2020

PayPal Sending Out Unsolicited Debit Cards

Filed under: Finance — Edgar (aka MrConsumer) @ 5:42 am

MrConsumer got quite a surprise in a letter from PayPal recently. It announced that the company was going to send him a business debit Mastercard to accompany his PayPal account. Say what?

PayPal letter

*MOUSE PRINT:

“If you don’t want this card, log in to PayPal at PayPal.com/nothanks… and we won’t ship it.”

So, one has to opt-out to stop them from sending the debit card.

But isn’t sending an unsolicited card illegal, you ask?

Federal law bans the sending of an unsolicited credit card to a consumer. But this was a debit card being sent for a business account.

Under federal law, an unactivated debit card can even be sent to a consumer unsolicited.

As a side note, remember, federal law does not generally extend the same credit card or debit card protections to business cards… therefore you have more rights with consumer cards.

So PayPal did nothing wrong legally. However, we think it is a better business practice to ask if customers want a card rather than automatically sending it out to them.

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7 Comments

  1. MrConsumer, a question for you: Does receipt of the PayPal debit card affect a person’s credit score?

    Edgar replies: A debit card is not a credit device in most instances. So just as your bank ATM card does not show up on your credit report, so shouldn’t one from PayPal.

    Comment by hmc — June 15, 2020 @ 7:22 am
  2. Legal or not this is pretty scummy and obviously done with specific intents. With opt-out they’re leaving the door open for someone to not read that email and get the unactivated debit card stolen from their mailbox. I wonder what the liability would be if your unsolicited business debit card was stolen and the thief found a way to activate it.

    Comment by Joel — June 15, 2020 @ 9:31 am
  3. Joel (above) makes a good point, questioning the security of these unsolicited debit cards. Normally, however, debit cards require a PIN for usage although I’m not so sure if that applies to a business debit card as I’ve never had one. So a PIN requirement may be another level of security.

    I remember as a kid in my college days when credit cards were sent out unsolicited. My very first credit card was a gas card sent unsolicited from Sunoco (are they even still around?). I was thrilled because not only did I get my first use and experience with a credit card, but it was how I started building my credit history. So for me, it wasn’t a bad deal at the time. But times have changed, and I’m glad the FTC instituted their policy of no unsolicited credit cards.

    Comment by Dan Kap — June 15, 2020 @ 10:54 am
  4. I got that same email and tried to opt out. Maybe it failed because they sent it anyway.
    I shredded it on arrival.
    They followed up by notifying me that I hadn’t activated it yet
    Maybe time to find another money transfer source.

    Comment by Robert — June 15, 2020 @ 1:51 pm
  5. i was just looking at something on paypal and thought of this so i checked around but saw no evidence of any debit card or offer on my acct.

    since i only use my credit card, gets me miles and i use them to fly business class around the world for free, so makes me wonder if this offer is tied to people who either link bank accts or have money in their “wallet”

    this is no brainer for paypal as i am sure they collect a fee from merchant for each use.

    they must be making millions in fees each day !

    leave itt to the people in these companies they find every way possible to be underhanded and sneaky in taking your money.

    luckily i know all the scams, use garbage email address for buying online and change it every few month, when at a store they ask for phone number i give them the number for the time. never have receipts emailed to me..go away home depot .. use virtual card number..and prefer paying with paypal as i do not want to give out cc to hundreds of merchants.

    also to keep safe i have a freeze on my credit. not applying for anything and no accts can be opened without removing the freeze.

    now if i can only find a way to stop the 25+ soam google calls and 20+ spam emails to business email address each day i can die a happy man

    Comment by rich — June 24, 2020 @ 9:14 pm
  6. Paypal is the worst company I have ever dealt with. I was swindled out of $200 through them. I stopped payment through my bank, then Paypal proceeded to steal every refund and payment I received and apply it to the fraudulent balance. Took over a month to get response from them and finally one rep said if I provided proof it was fraud from my bank they would refund me. I got proof and when I contacted Paypal they said “case is closed” Beware, almost EVERY transaction on ebay goes through Paypal, even if you pay with a credit or debit card.

    Comment by Pete — July 5, 2020 @ 7:40 am
  7. Shades of record clubs, eh?

    “If you want the Record of the Month or one of the Alternate Selections, do nothing. If not, notify us by mail within a week of receiving our monthly newsletter using the pre-addressed reply card.”

    Of course, you had to provide the postage stamp.

    Comment by Joe Eee — July 5, 2020 @ 10:03 am

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