If you put the wrong billing address on an online order, the worst thing that can happen is that your order may be canceled. More often, the retailer will notify you of the error, and you’ll have the chance to update your information. Your order should process normally once your information is updated. Learn more about why your billing address is necessary and what may happen with your order below.
What Happens If You Put the Wrong Billing Address?
What happens if you put the wrong billing address? In the most extreme circumstance, if you submit an incorrect billing address, your online order will be canceled.
However, in most cases, you’ll be alerted to the discrepancy right away — sometimes before you even place the order. If you’re able to submit your order, the company will likely email you to let you know that it failed to process your order. You will be asked to log on to your account or contact customer service to update your information. Once your information is corrected, your order should process normally.
If you are notified that your order has been canceled, you will need to create and submit a new order with the correct billing information.
Why Do Companies Need Your Billing Address?
When a company asks for the billing address associated with your credit card, it’s part of a security measure to help reduce credit card fraud. Your billing name and address should match the name and address that appear on your credit card statements. Your billing address and identity will be matched to the name and address on file with your card issuer in a process called Address Verification Service (AVS).
Retailers can use a variety of methods to check the validity of a billing address, Equifax identity and fraud expert John Marsden said in an interview with Telegraph Money. (Equifax is one of the largest American credit bureaus.) As Marsden points out, not all address verification services are created equal. The most secure checks are also the priciest services, so if a retailer doesn’t want to pay for a safer verification program like AVS, it may not notice the billing address error. In this case, you’d merely receive the item you ordered.
Putting the wrong billing address on an online order will often be flagged by the retailer before you’re able to check out. But, if the order goes through, you may receive an email letting you know the retailer was unable to process your order. You can update your information online or call customer service to straighten it out. In the worst case scenario, the company will cancel your order, and you’ll need to create and submit a new order with the correct billing information.