To be absolutely FUMING with Gofundme?

(34 Posts)
AmIReadingThisCorrectly Sun 30-Aug-15 18:01:12

This thread will possibly out me in real life but tbh I'm so angry I don't really care!

I have been helping a family member with raising funds for a really good cause and yesterday we reached our target (c. £7000). However my relative who is admin in the GFM page got a phone call from someone who had donated a 3-figure sum to say that the payment had been taken from her account twice. Family member helped to investigate and it turns out that Stripe (the payment admin company, kind of like PayPal is to EBay) had taken the payment twice but only allocated one to the fund, leaving the other in limbo somewhere. The lady (quite rightly) raised a dispute with her bank who have chased GFM for the money, and GFM have taken 2x her donation away from the fund (even though only 1 was credited), meaning it is over £1000 down.

My relative has contacted GFM who refuse to speak via phone, and has given them all the proof that the payment only went in once. However GFM will only consider this evidence if it's submitted via a specific claim form, which my relative cannot complete as within the form you have to highlight the duplicate payments from your fund, which they are unable to do as they only received one. So basically GFM have got us over a barrel �� we have threatened media and legal involvement due to the fact that hundreds of pounds worth of other people's donations have now been taken away plus to make matters worse the account has been suspended and over £500 of pending payments will not now go through to the fund. So from reaching the target, we are now over £1500 down and are not allowed to use the page to raise any more money due to no fault of our own. GFM are also messaging donators telling them that the account has been suspended due to "suspicious activity" which is also not helping our cause!

Has anyone got any experience of this and any advice on what we can do? Thanks in advance.

MaidOfStars Sun 30-Aug-15 18:11:19

Did the donor get two lots of money back?

AmIReadingThisCorrectly Sun 30-Aug-15 18:14:08

No, the bank only refunded the original payment but the second one has been taken away from the account by GFM and won't be returned until relatives can prove it's theirs, using the form which they can't access because they have to show duplicate payments and cannot do so. I guess the donor thinks their original donation still stands whereas in reality it's been taken away plus another few hundred as well.

JustOneMinuteAtATime Sun 30-Aug-15 18:15:32

Have you contacted Stripe? It sounds like they are at fault. They are a card payment processor, so they will have allocated the payment somewhere or it'll be "stuck" with them.

Gfm will only be able to refund payments that actually reached them. If the second payment didn't, then they can't refund it, and they are right to close the page and message funders if there is suspicious activity - you claiming a refund of a payment that didn't reach them counts, I'm afraid.

Contact Stripe (they are quite responsive, usually, and US based) and apologise to Gfm.

AmIReadingThisCorrectly Sun 30-Aug-15 18:21:01

We don't know where the second payment went. All we know is that Stripe took 2 lots, then GFM account showed one so the other one has gone missing. Then GFM have debited 2 lots of the payment from the account in response to the donor's bank raising a query. We haven't claimed any of the money as yet, it was all still sitting in the GFM account but this all came up as we were notified by GFM that lots was to be debited. So obviously we queried it but all the restrictions were already imposed by then etc. the only people claiming a refund have been the donor's bank.

AmIReadingThisCorrectly Sun 30-Aug-15 18:21:34

Apparently Stripe have to be contacted via GFM and we can only do so by filling in the impossible online form.

AmIReadingThisCorrectly Sun 30-Aug-15 18:23:28

Just, GFM refunding money that didn't reach them is exactly what they've done. Any activity on the account has not been instigated by us yet we're being accused of wrongdoing.

hibbleddible Sun 30-Aug-15 18:40:39

Since stripe and gfm aren't any use I would bypass them and ask the bank to refund both payments.

The donor then could remake the original payment directly to the charity.

AmIReadingThisCorrectly Sun 30-Aug-15 18:44:04

hibble this is all in response to the donor's bank claiming the duplicate payment back. Except GFM didn't have the duplicate payment. Yet they're acting like they have and have already refunded it along with the original. So it's a crazy GFM response to the bank's query which has caused this. We can't go to someone else's bank and ask for the money back.

AmIReadingThisCorrectly Sun 30-Aug-15 18:44:57

And also the donor was only refunded the duplicate amount so as far as they're concerned, their money has already been donated.

WickedWax Sun 30-Aug-15 18:56:03

I would contact the UK Crowd Funding Association and ask for a copy of their code of practice and see if they can offer you any advice on how to escalate this - Do they have any kind of regulatory body they're answerable to? Find that out and take it from there.

hibbleddible Sun 30-Aug-15 20:25:19

I'm not really sure I follow.. Who has the duplicate payment now?

The simplest route would seem to me for the donor to claim back both payments via their bank.

Noeuf Sun 30-Aug-15 20:34:23

So, relative makes one payment of say £100. Stripe takes £200 and allocates one to GFM and one to an unknown designation. GFM, when contacted, refund £200?

Noeuf Sun 30-Aug-15 20:35:49

But if your relative has only had £100 back who have GFM refunded?

AmIReadingThisCorrectly Sun 30-Aug-15 20:45:40

Almost, Noeuf, except that relative runs the GFM account and the donor is not someone we know. So donor has had £100 back and £100 is somewhere else, in Stripe's system. But GFM have taken £200 from relative's fundraising. Hibble we have no idea who has the duplicate payment now. GFM have taken it out of fundraising even though it never arrived there but only refunded one amount of the donation to the donor.

NeedMoreSleepOrSugar Sun 30-Aug-15 20:50:15

So, relative makes donation (say £300). They have two lots deducted by stripe, who only pass one lot on to GFM.
So GFM (your account) have £300,
Stripe (presumably) have £300
Your relative is short by £300

GFM then receive a request from relatives bank (why GFM if Stripe are handling the payments?)
They 'refund' £600, so:

GFM (your account) is now short by £300,
Your relative got £300 back so is where she expected to be
Stripe still have £300 they shouldn't
and someone else (your relative's bank?) has £300 that used to be in your GFM account, donated by other people

Is that correct?

Noeuf Sun 30-Aug-15 20:50:45

So from your pov, £100 arrived in the account and then £200 left it?

AmIReadingThisCorrectly Sun 30-Aug-15 20:56:15

No! My relative is running the fundraising via Gofundme. The person who donated the money is a stranger who heard of the campaign via social media. The anonymous donor had their payment duplicated so contacted their bank who got in touch with gofundme.
So...donor pays XYZ amount but Stripe take 2xXYZ amount.
GFM gets 1xXYZ amount, meaning 1xXYZ amount is floating around somewhere in Stripe's system.
Donor contacts bank who contact GFM.
GFM take 2xXYZ from relative's fundraising page even though only half that amount was put on there by anonymous donor.
Bank refunds duplicate amount to donor.
So donor thinks original amount of XYZ has been donated whereas rekatice's gofundme page is now down by 2xXYZ amount.
Does that make sense?

AmIReadingThisCorrectly Sun 30-Aug-15 20:57:22

Yes Noeuf exactly that but a much bigger amount of money.

Noeuf Sun 30-Aug-15 21:18:02

What a bloody nightmare. Can you use email at all so you have records?

AmIReadingThisCorrectly Sun 30-Aug-15 21:26:33

Well GFM have said that they can see the payment twice via Stripe and not in their account so have actually agreed that that's where the problem lies. But they won't consider dealing with it until this bloody form is filled in, which can't be done as the payment is not in the account to be able to be highlighted for dispute. They are refusing to speak via phone and refusing to take it any further until the impossible form is submitted. So the account is now down over £1000 from this debacle plus over £500 of pending payments because of the account being suspended - the suspension won't be lifted until this is resolved in our favour, which it won't be...grrrrrr!

AmIReadingThisCorrectly Sun 30-Aug-15 21:27:08

So although via email they have agreed with us, they won't act on it.

OutToGetYou Sun 30-Aug-15 21:32:34

Complain to PaymentsUK, they oversee most payment systems, and also the Payment Systems Regulator and Financial Obdsman.

Noeuf Sun 30-Aug-15 21:37:01

Was it made recently? I'm just wondering if all will be easier on Tuesday? For example, yesterday I transferred 1200 from bank a to bank b and then paid 1000 to my mum and 200 to someone else. I can see 1200 leaving on 1 September but the other transaction incl the 1200 arriving in bank b don't show anywhere.

lifesalongsong Sun 30-Aug-15 21:44:38

Could you just put something on the online form just to get to the next stage or do you need to click on some info from elsewhere iyswim.

If it's a case of entering a date I'd be tempted to just put one to get the process going, you can explain once you're at a stage to be able to speak to someone

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