Proper Use of Reason Return Code R69 (Field Errors)

Posted September 15, 2006

Effective September 15, 2006, the NACHA Operating Rules (Rules) with respect to several dishonored return and contested dishonored return reason codes were modified to more clearly define the circumstances under which those codes should be used.  This Operations Bulletin is intended to be a reminder of the key points related to the appropriate use of Return Reason Code R69 (Field Errors) and address a common misuse of this return code in today’s marketplace.

Returns Dishonored Due to Incorrect Information

The Rules allow an ODFI to dishonor a return entry when information from the original entry is incorrectly copied to the return.  On September 15, the Rules were amended to consolidate into one dishonored return reason code all criteria related to the return of incorrect information.  This amendment requires the ODFI to identify the specific fields where errors occur through the inclusion of one or more of the following codes in the Addenda Information Field:

01        Incorrect DFI Account Number
02        Incorrect Original Entry Trace Number
03        Incorrect Dollar Amount
04        Incorrect Individual Identification Number/Individual Identification
05        Incorrect Transaction Code
06        Incorrect Company Identification Number

Multiple codes may be included within the Addenda Information Field to indicate that more than one field within the return entry contains erroneous data.  When more than one code is included, they must be separated by asterisks.  For example, if the return contained incorrect information in the DFI Account Number, Dollar Amount, and Company Identification Number Fields, the Addenda Information Field of the Dishonored Return Entry would be formatted as “01*03*06”.

RDFIs receiving entries dishonored as R69 may continue to correct erroneous information by transmitting Corrected Return Entries using Return Reason Code R74 (Corrected Return). R74 has also been expanded, as part of the September 15th changes, to accommodate additional data fields (i.e., DFI Account Number and Transaction Code) that might have been copied incorrectly from the original entry and require correction by the RDFI.

A new Contested Dishonored Return Reason Code R76 (No Errors Found) was created to be used by an RDFI to contest the ODFI’s dishonor of a return entry for multiple errors (using Return Reason Code R69 - Multiple Errors) when no errors exist.  In addition, a new Contested Dishonored Return Reason Code R75 (Original Return Not a Duplicate) was created to be used by an RDFI to contest the ODFI’s dishonor of a return entry as a duplicate return (R67 - Duplicate Return) when the return was not a duplicate.

Misuse of Return Reason Code R69

In some instances, ODFIs have established a business practice to dishonor, using Return Reason Code R69, returns that bear an improper return reason code (for example, a TEL entry bearing return reason code R07).  Although an improper return reason code is a violation of the Rules, this type of violation should be handled through the National System of Fines rather than the dishonored return or corrected return process.  (The corrected return process was not designed to permit modification of the original return reason code used by the RDFI.)

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