Best Legal Merchant Accounts

What to Know Before Getting Started

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Selecting a credit card processor is often more complicated than most people expect. How much should you be paying in fees? Should you lease or buy equipment? Should you be locked into a service agreement for anything length of time? These considerations and several others are imporant to understand before signing up with any merchant account provider. Mistakes are easily made and can be very costly to your business. Along with seeing our top choices for payment services below, be sure to checkout this post to avoid common traps in the merchant services industry.

Considerations For Current Business Owners

Changing merchant accounts can be an expensive, complicated, and time consuming process. Are you really going to save as much as promised? Do you need to buy to new equipment or sign new lease agreements? Will there be other less accountable costs such as those associated with employee retraining? Before selecting one of our choices below, you may want to consider renegotiating your fees with your current payment processing vendors using the help of a contingency-compensated consultant. It can result in a dramatic decrease in costs without the pains of switching. In some cases business owner have also obtained substantial refunds of prior overcharges along with saving thousands in future processing costs. See this post to learn more about this little-known alternative to changing merchant account provider.

Law firms require credit card processing that is both simple and sophisticated. Since most client payments are billed upfront and placed in an IOLTA or other trust account, there are no intense point-of-sale demands to consider. However, there are still some challenges when it comes to securely routing transactions, re-charging client cards, accepting ACH payments, establishing payment plans, invoicing clients, refunding unearned payments, and tracking incoming and outgoing payments. Using the right payment system can keep cardholders happy and their funds moving smoothly, while making the wrong choice can result in delays, excessive fees, and dissatisfied clients.

To help you make the right choice for your law office, we’ve compiled the following list of the best merchant account providers for lawyers. These merchant account providers offer processing solutions that keep equipment and processing costs to a minimum while still facilitating the management of retainers, payment plans, and trust accounts. In most cases, the best solution for attorneys will be the virtual terminal option offered by each company, but there are also mobile and online payment products that could be useful under certain conditions. You are encouraged to contact multiple providers on this list to determine which one offers the most appropriate solution for your law firm.

Our unbiased articles are supported in part by helping you find highly reviewed merchant accounts. You can learn more here.

Why These Merchant Account Providers

Host Merchant Services

Host Merchant Services is a Newark, Delaware-based merchant account provider that is well-suited for law offices. The company’s products and services include point-of-sale solutions, online marketing tools, an online payment gateway and virtual terminal, and mobile credit card processing. Host Merchant Services specializes in e-commerce business types and can provide a free website and email address to new law office clients looking to build a web presence. These comprehensive options are essential for any law firm that wants to maintain a strong web presence and to easily process payments online.

Host Merchant Services has received only positive feedback on public forums, with most reviewers singling out the company’s customer service for praise. Host offers interchange-plus pricing with no early termination fees to all of its merchants, meaning that users will enjoy the most transparent pricing model and can cancel service without penalty. The BBB gives Host an “A+” rating, and CPO also gives the company an “A+.”

For more information, visit the Host Merchant Services website or call (888) 727-4538.

Based in Woodland Hills, California, PaymentCloud is a merchant account provider that specializes in serving standard to high risk business types. The company’s products and services include point-of-sale solutions, mobile phone swipers, an online payment gateway and virtual terminal, EMV-compatible terminals, and merchant cash advances. These features allow merchants to accept payments over the phone and generate detailed invoices that can be paid through a virtual terminal. For those reasons, PaymentCloud is a good option for law firms as it allows them to easily deal with clients directly and provide them with online payment options that can process credit card or ACH payments to easily resolve outstanding balances.

PaymentCloud provides a dedicated account rep to all new merchants for the life of the account. The company has not received any negative complaints on consumer forums, and it customizes its pricing according to each merchant’s business type and processing history. The BBB does not maintain a profile for PaymentCloud at this time, but CPO gives the company an “A.”

For more information, visit the PaymentCloud website or call (888) 506-7859.

Fattmerchant

Active since early 2014, Fattmerchant is a merchant account provider leading the industry’s move toward flat-rate, subscription-style pricing. The company’s products and services include EMV-compatible countertop terminals, a virtual terminal, an online payment gateway, an online shopping cart, mobile phone processing, QuickBooks integration, online invoicing, and recurring billing. Fattmerchant is capable of serving all standard-risk attorney’s offices and offers a comprehensive dashboard for tracking all payments and customers.

Fattmerchant offers multiple pricing plans with different rates. Merchants can select either a plan that charges a flat fee on all transactions or a plan that charges a fixed monthly fee plus a fixed per-transaction dollar amount above interchange. In other words, merchants can choose whether or not they are charged a percentage markup on each transaction. Fattmerchant currently has an “A” rating on CPO and an “A+” rating with the Better Business Bureau.

For more information, visit the Fattmerchant website, or call (866) 397-9826.

Our unbiased articles are supported in part by helping you find highly reviewed merchant accounts. You can learn more here.

Why These Merchant Account Providers

Other Merchant Account Options

The providers in this section may not have been researched as thoroughly or may lack a quality that prevented them from being listed above. We have listed them here to provide a broader view of potential merchant account options. Are you a decision maker with your company and believe that you should be listed below? Tell us here.


CDG Commerce

Located in Chesapeake, Virginia, CDG Commerce is a great option for legal firms. CDG has been privately owned since 1998 and offers a proprietary payment gateway (as well as a discount on Authorize.Net’s payment gateway), a virtual terminal, QuickBooks integration, mobile phone processing, sales reporting, security breach protection, and vulnerability scanning. CDG Commerce is ideal for law offices that require a simple, low-cost processing solution.

CDG Commerce only charges a low, fixed fee per transaction and offers competitive contractual terms, including no annual fees, monthly minimums, or termination fees. CDG also offers next-day funding to most business types. CDG has earned an “A+” rating in our review as well as an “A+” rating with the BBB.

For more information, see the CDG Commerce website or call (888) 393-1079.

Payline Data

Headquartered in Chicago, Illinois, Payline Data is an exemplary merchant account provider for lawyers. The company’s products and features include a QuickBooks-integrated online payment gateway and virtual terminal, automated recurring billing, payment tokenization, online shopping carts, mobile processing, and customizable sales analytics. Payline’s virtual terminal securely transmits customers’ encrypted payment information to Payline’s secure servers, eliminating the merchant’s liability while still allowing the merchant to initiate future payments without direct access to card data.

Payline Data regularly receives positive reviews from merchants for its transparent sales policies, helpful customer support, and affordable pricing model, which typically includes interchange-plus pricing with no early termination fees. Our review of Payline Data gives the company an “A+” rating, while the Better Business Bureau gives Payline an “A” at this time.

Dharma Merchant Services

Based in San Francisco, California, Dharma Merchant Services is a highly rated merchant account provider that places a corporate emphasis on social consciousness and community outreach. The company’s products and services include countertop terminals, mobile device payment processing, an online payment gateway (Authorize.Net), QuickBooks integration, small business financing, and custom fundraising pages for non-profits. The company extends special pricing to non-profit organizations and donates a percentage of its profits to non-profits of its choosing every year. Dharma is best suited to provide savings for merchants who process over $10,000 per month, which makes it a good fit for many law offices.

Dharma scores highly in our review and elsewhere due to its positively reviewed customer service, transparent marketing practices, competitive interchange-plus rates, and fair service agreements. The BBB currently assigns a rating of “A+” for Dharma Merchant Services, while CardPaymentOptions.com also gives the company an “A+.”

For more information, see the Dharma Merchant Services website or call (888) 404-1237.

Helcim

Based in Alberta, Canada, Helcim is an all-purpose processor that supplies in-person, mobile, and online payment solutions to businesses in both the U.S. and Canada. Helcim’s products and services include a virtual terminal, traditional POS equipment, email invoicing, secure data storage and access, recurring billing, and a payment gateway that can be directly integrated with a website, shopping cart, billing system, or other application via an API.

Helcim is known for its transparent pricing structure (interchange-plus pricing with month-to-month agreements and no early termination fees) and frequently receives positive merchant reviews related to its sales and support staff. CardPaymentOptions.com gives Helcim an “A+” rating at this time, and the BBB also assigns Helcim an “A+.”

For more information, see the Helcim Website.

AffiniPay

A DBA of Austin, Texas-based payment processor AffiniPay, LawPay is a credit card processing solution designed specifically for the legal services industry. LawPay boasts endorsements from the bar associations of 39 states and is the preferred processing partner of the American Bar Association. In addition to a virtual terminal, online invoicing, recurring billing, digital signature collection, and customized reporting, LawPay is able to automatically route unearned fees to an IOLTA account and earned fees to an operating account to keep client funds correctly allocated.

LawPay charges a flat monthly fee and two fixed per-transaction fees depending on the type of credit card used. We do not have a review for LawPay at this time, but the company’s AffiniPay brand currently maintains an “A” rating from CardPaymentOptions.com and an “A+” rating with the BBB.


If your business offers merchant accounts and payment solutions to legal offices, please leave a comment in the comment section below or contact us through our contact page in order to get listed in this article.

Thank you for reading my review. I hope that it has helped you with your research.

Why I'm Qualified to Write About Credit Card Processing and Merchant Account Services

I'm a former credit card processing sales director who left the industry because I didn't like how it takes advantage of small business owners. It feeds like a leech on businesses and thrives by imposing fees that are nearly impossible to comprehend. Seeing a need for change, I left and built this website help business owners better understand the industry, research merchant services providers, and get refunds of excessive merchant account fees. My experience of working "behind the curtain" in the industry, and using that knowledge for good, has resulted in millions of dollars returned to hard-working small business owners as well as enterprise-level companies.

From the time that I starting working in the merchant services industry to when I left to create this website, I've been on the pulse of payments for nearly 15 years. It didn't seem fair to keep this "insider" knowledge to myself. To lift the fog, I've reviewed hundreds of companies, read thousands of user reviews, and learned the pricing tricks of every provider. If you have questions about credit card processing, you can find the answers on this website.

How I Can Help You

I specialize in helping businesses get refunds of excessive fees and have recovered $1,567,184 this year alone! Submit a recent statement below to find out if you are getting overcharged. I'll take a look at it for free. If I find fees that can be refunded, hire me on contigency. I only get compensated if I put money back into your pocket.

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