Frontline Processing Review

Frontline Processing Overview

First Data and Global Payments Reseller

Founded in 1997, Frontline Processing (frontlineprocessing.com) is a merchant account provider serving internet, storefront, mail order and mobile business types. The company also does business under the name “Payment Portal” (paymentportal.us). Frontline is a reseller of First Data and Global Payments contracts.

Location and Ownership

Frontline Processing is headquartered at 3701 Trakker Trl., Unit 1F, Bozeman, Montana 59718 and also maintains an office in Henderson, Nevada. Frontline Processing is a registered ISO/MSP of Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., Walnut Creek, California, and of Deutsche Bank, USA, New York, New York. Chris Kittler is listed as the owner and CEO of Frontline Processing.

Frontline Processing Review Table of Contents

  • Costs & Contract: Frontline Processing offers a three-year contract through First Data with an early termination fee of $50.
  • Complaints & Service: Frontline Processing has received fewer than 10 public complaints.
  • BBB Rating: Frontline Processing has an “A+” rating with the Better Business Bureau and has received three complaints in the past three years.
  • Sales & Marketing: Frontline Processing states that it does not hire independent sales representatives, and it has not received any complaints about its sales practices.
  • Rates & Fees: How Merchants Got The Best Rates With Frontline Processing

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Products & Services Offered

Types of Businesses Served

  • Retail
  • Mobile
  • MOTO
  • E-commerce
  • Firearms

Frontline Processing Rates, Fees, and Costs

Key Points

Swiped Rate 1.00% - 4.99%
Keyed-in Rate 1.00% - 4.99%
Monthly Minimum Fee $25/mo
Statement Fee $10/mo
Early Termination Fee $50 Or $250
Regulatory Fee $4.95/mo
Merch Protect (PCI Compliance) Fee $4.95/mo
PCI Non-Compliance Fee $19.95/mo
After-Hours Customer Support Fee $5/incident
Equipment Lease Terms None

Frontline Processing Pricing

The standard Frontline Processing contract (available below) outlines a three-year agreement through First Data with an early termination fee of $250, a monthly minimum fee of $25, a monthly statement fee of $10, a monthly “Merch Protect” fee (which may just be another name for a PCI Compliance fee) of $4.95, a PCI non-compliance fee of $19.95, a monthly regulatory fee of $4.95, a fee of $5.00 for after-hours customer support and either tiered or interchange-plus pricing.

Updated Contract Terms

A company representative contacted us to correct some of the information found in the contract below. He specifically asserted that the company’s early termination fee is $50 rather than $250, and that the company does not lease any equipment through First Data Global Leasing. He also stated that the company does rent equipment to customers, and that it provides free EMV terminals to retail merchants. Additionally, he informed us that Frontline’s monthly minimum fee and statement fee will vary from merchant to merchant. Merchants should be aware that Frontline used to enforce a Liquidated Damages early termination fee, but the same representative has stated that Frontline no longer charges this type of fee. We have not found independent reviews that confirm these revised contract terms, but these fees would certainly represent an improvement over the language of the company’s standard contract.

Few Contract Complaints

Though not competitive with the cheapest merchant accounts, these contract terms would appear to be slightly better than average for the industry. However, we have found a few of merchant complaints related to Frontline’s pricing and contract terms, with one claiming an ETF of $19,000 and another describing unspecified hidden fees. Still, it seems that most of the company’s merchants are satisfied with the pricing they receive. We will also tentatively take the company representative at his word regarding Frontline’s reduced early termination fee, variable monthly costs, and lack of equipment leases. In light of this information, we award the company an above-average grade of “B.” See the Frontline Processing Merchant Application and the Frontline Processing Program Guide.

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Response from Frontline Processing

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Frontline Processing Complaints & Customer Reviews

Key Points

Total Online Complaints <10
Live Customer Support Yes
Most Common Complaint N/A

Low Complaint Volume

At the time of this update, we are unable to locate any Frontline Processing reviews that describe the company as a scam or a ripoff. However, we did find a few complaints about the company in the comment section of this review and four on other consumer protection websites. Three of these reviews (one of which is available here) complained of the company’s former policy of enforcing a liquidated damages fee, one mentioned sudden termination of their account without notice, and another claimed that Frontline used a reserve account of $15,000 as an early termination fee.

Frontline Processing Support Options

In the case of the merchant whose account was closed without notice, a Frontline representative responded to this complaint and explained that the merchant was flagged by the company’s risk management department for repeated violations with other processors. Frontline offers a dedicated support phone line on its website, but a couple of recent complaints cite an unresponsive or rude customer service department. Frontline Processing’s support options are not sufficient to qualify it as a top customer service payment processor.

“Phantom Debt” Scheme

In March 2015, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) filed a complaint against Global Payments, Electronic Merchant Systems, Frontline Processing, and Pathfinder Payment Solutions in connection with a “phantom debt” scheme that allegedly attempted to collect nonexistent debts from consumers. The CFPB’s complaint alleged that these four payment processors facilitated transactions for multiple debt collection companies owned by Marcus Brown and Mohan Bagga. According to the complaint, these debt collection companies used robocalls to target millions of consumers, who they then threatened in order to obtain debt payments that were not actually owed or that didn’t even exist. The CFPB further alleged that Frontline’s underwriting and risk monitoring were deficient, and that the company failed to appropriately monitor certain accounts. The case was dismissed in August 2017.

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Response from Frontline Processing

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Frontline Processing BBB Rating Summary

Key Points - BBB

Product & Service Complaints 1
Billing & Collection Complaints 2
Advertising & Sales Complaints 0
Guarantee & Warranty Complaints 0
Delivery Complaints 0

Under 10 Complaints

Frontline Processing has been an accredited business of the Better Business Bureau since 2005 and presently maintains an “A+” rating based on three total complaints. Two complaints are categorized under billing and collection, while the other is related to a product or service issue. All three complaints either were resolved to the dissatisfaction of the merchant or did not receive a final response from the merchant.

What Merchants Say

One merchant complaint describes continued charges after account cancellation:

This company continues to charge me their monthly fees despite my canceling over three months ago. I canceled services with them in September of 2017. They told me in September that my cancellation was finalized. When they charged me early October I reminded them I canceled with their services and they assured me it would not happen again and confirmed the services had been terminated. Rinse and repeat, the same process has been occurring since September and I am quite fed up with it. This company is a merchant processor for online websites, I shut down and deleted my website in September of 2017. Their services cannot even be rendered due to my website not existing anymore. They are charging me services they are not rendering, and cannot be rendering in the first place.

Merchants who find themselves in this situation may benefit from taking the proper steps to cancel their merchant account without paying a fee.

An “A” Performance

The company has also received two informal positive reviews to its BBB profile, but these reviews are not subject to verification by the BBB. In light of these figures, we agree with the BBB’s rating.

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Response from Frontline Processing

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Truth In Marketing & Advertising

Key Points

Employs Independent Resellers No
Advertises Deceptive Rates No
Discloses All Important Terms No

Inside Sales Staff

According to a company representative, Frontline Processing exclusively utilizes in-house sales agents and third-party referral partnerships to sell its services. The company formerly employed a team of independent sales reps, but this practice did not generate any complaints about Frontline’s sales team at the time. Multiple merchants have reported surprise upon learning of the company’s cancellation fee; however, this fee appears to have been significantly reduced within the past year. A couple of recent Frontline Processing complaints cite hidden fees and aggressive telemarketing, but Frontline has denied fault- stating that scammers may be posing as the company to get merchants to sign up for an alternate service.

No Deceptive Advertising

To its credit, Frontline Processing does not appear to engage in any deceptive advertising strategies in its official materials. We therefore award it a grade of “A.” If you suspect that Frontline Processing is charging you undisclosed fees, we recommend seeking an independent statement audit to find and eliminate hidden charges.

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Response from Frontline Processing

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Frontline Processing Marketing Example

Frontline Processing Logo

Our Opinion of Frontline Processing

A Decent Choice for Most Merchants

Frontline Processing rates as an above average merchant services provider according to our rating system. The company claims to have eliminated the liquidated damages fee in its standard contract, which was the primary cause of merchant complaints in previous updates to this review. However, merchants are advised to read all documentation before signing up for services through the company and to compare its costs to top-rated credit card processors.

We rely on your feedback about Frontline Processing to keep this review accurate and up-to-date. Please take a minute to tell us about your experience. We and the small business owners of this world thank you!

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

My Qualifications

I'm a former credit card processing sales director who left the industry to start my own a small business. From the time that I starting working in the merchant services industry to when I left to write about it, I've been on the pulse of payments for nearly 15 years. It didn't seem fair to keep this insider knowledge to myself, so decided to build this website to help you research which providers to use and how to save money on rates and fees. 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 here. Simply scroll to the top of the page to find the search bar. You can also message me if you need any guidance.

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9 Reviews Leave Your Review for Frontline Processing Below

  1. Chance Claxton says:

    This company has literally been stealing money straight from my bank account. I canceled services with them 3 months ago, but they continue to charge me anyway. Every month they charge me I remind them that I canceled several months prior, and I don’t even have a website anymore. They have told me every time I bring it up that they have canceled my services and it won’t happen again, but the first of the month comes around and they charge me again. They are unresponsive in my attempts to contact them about this, they have no answers when you ask them what they are going to do to fix the issue. When I first signed up with them they told me I would be charged a MUCH lower amount monthly than it turned out to be. And they have hidden fees they don’t discuss with you upfront. I HIGHLY suggest using any one of their competitors as these people care way more about stealing your money than satisfying their customers. I wish I could give them a lower rating, and I will absolutely be reporting them to the Better Business Bureau for fraud. I wouldn’t suggest this company to my most bitter of enemies

    1. Ron Dolay says:

      This company is atrocious, have a friend who processed through them for less than a year and they are suing him after he had to close his business( after 8 months) for 5 years of fees. He currently works at a restaurant to try and support his wife and three kids and has no use for a merchant account. They have no heart whatsoever !

  2. Loree Morgan says:

    We have been very happy with Frontline Processing for 4 years now; our representative Mike Peterson has been wonderful – always on top of every request and follows through to make sure concerns have been addressed. I was very picky because had two nightmare processor stories before going with FP. I look over the statements very carefully and have called the office with questions; they’re always courteous and quick to look into and answer my questions. Love using a Montana company!

  3. Anonymous says:

    2011-2012

    My statement comes from behind the scenes of what happens within Frontline Processing.

    I worked in the Collection/Risk Department for a year and a half. When I first started I was made aware that Chris Kittler (Owner and Operator) had just fired four people from the Collection/Risk Department and I was to take over without training or somewhat minimal training.

    Existing employees stated that they were in a meeting when Chris Kittler told them if they didn’t like the way he was doing business to get out and leave. Three employees from the Risk Department left right away. The fourth never showed up again and left her belongings behind.

    A Little About Chris Kittler:

    Chris Kittler is known for being a rowdy Cowboy in Big Timber, MT and wherever he “roams.” He also owns and operates a Bison Ranch outside of Big Timber. He’s the kind of Cowboy that will Hogtie and Spur a horse until they can’t move. I won’t get into his family detail, but it gets worse from there.

    One day a week went by with no Boss….which we found was very odd. We later learned that our Boss was in the Gallatin County Jail with DUI. The Bozeman Daily Chronicle read that a man ran from the police in a Blue Mustang leaving from the Buffalo Station outside of Four Corners.

    While I was working at Frontline Processing. Chris Kittler walked around the office and told Everyone he was…”Going to KILL each and Everyone of us if we didn’t get the PCI shit done!”

    He would usually put his employees down while also yelling and spiting in their faces.

    Honestly, I really don’t know how I lasted for a year and a half!

    Collection Department:

    When I first started Chris had told me to place a little over 500 people back into Collections. I called our Collector and he stated that were not trackable (cease and desist) and could not be collected upon. Chris made the collection company research each one and try to collect monies again.

    He also had us pull credit on each individual even if they no longer were in operation. It ended up ruining peoples credit.

    I would advise everyone to read the terms and conditions of Frontline’s Contract (section 13) Also, on the end of the contract is the lawsuit terms.

    (3 year contract. It rolls over if you don’t send in a written letter stating you no longer wish to process with them)

    Frontline requires you to have a reserve. The calculation for you to end your contact are calculated by the last three processing months added up resulting in a termination fee of anywhere from $500.00 to $14,000.00. If not paid, you get sent directly to the collection department and your credit pulled!

    If that didn’t work, Chris Kittler is the kind of guy that is “Sue happy!”

    The Sales people will also signed the contract for people and place it into full operation mode without the owners consent. Resulting in collections again.

    Don’t process with these people! They also operate in Las Vegas.

    “I don’t know how he gets away with it! He’s a True Criminal!”

    He also illegally terminates people. There is NO training at Frontline Processing for employees!

    Currently, he is under 2 lawsuits for illegal termination.

    1. At no time in the history of Frontline Processing has any four people been fired at one time, let alone from the risk department. I do own a ranch, and you may visit our website at http://www.sweetgrassbuffalo.com for more information. Sweet Grass Buffalo raises and sells grass-fed, free range bison meat. Our bison meat tastes great and is lower in fat than chicken or fish. No animals are ever mistreated on our ranch and anyone doing so are let go. I personally have donated tens of thousands of dollars to the Humane Society, and I wouldn’t tolerate anyone that I saw harming any animal in any way.

      I have been happily married to the same person for 20 years, and we have three children: one graduated from George Washington University, one is attending George Washington University and the other is attending the International School. I do not have a DUI; however, I was cited for reckless driving when I was pulled over for excessive speed on an entrance ramp with my 900 horsepower Shelby Cobra. I am self-made, as I left home at the age of 18 with very little money to speak of.

      PCI is important, but I have never killed anyone over it. Our collections policies run in accordance with the collection laws. To my knowledge, Frontline has never had an infraction. We do have a three-year contract, and our contract completion fee is $50.00. We do have a hardship policy that allows clients out of their contract in case of bankruptcy, sickness or some other hardship. There are clients with large fees due at the end of their contracts, and the far majority is for unfulfilled sales and other trailing activity, which have to do with internet clients and not brick and mortar retail businesses. We see our clients as people and make every effort to meet them more than half way. It is encouraging that this person did inform clients to read the merchant agreement, as we do stress this to all of our valued staff. We do place merchants on reserve from time to time, as do all card processors to protect the cardholders. This is a requirement by the industry.

      Frontline has been in operation for 18 years. We have two offices: one in Bozeman, Montana and the other in Henderson, Nevada. We are proud of both of them. Frontline has doubled in size over the last two years, and we are proud members of the many charities doing good work all over the globe. We carry an A+ rating from the BBB, a Five Star rating from Merchant Maverick report and have a B+ rating on this site as well. We do hope to improve this to an A+.

      I have no criminal record whatsoever. One would have to question if this anonymous person, with all the inaccurate information, even has the right company?

  4. EILEEN says:

    I am so impressed with Frontline Processing, it is refreshing to actually be able to talk to a real person that speaks English and without a bunch of nonsense. The few times I have had to call in I get professional and competent help.
    I have people call all the time wanting me to change my processor, I tell them that there is no way I would give up Frontline. Frontline is located in Bozeman MT which is right out my back door. Love the idea of keeping jobs in the USA. Good Job people!!

    1. Hi Eileen,

      In order to authenticate your testimonial, please reply to this comment with you business name and location.

      1. A BAR S PROCESSING
        SCOBEY, MT 59263

  5. John Wellington says:

    Read your contract. Especially section 13 regarding cancellation. Most credit card companies have a small or no cancellation policies, this company holds you to 3 YEAR contract and will charge you thousands of dollars to get out of it. There are so many others that have no cancellation policies, why would you ever sign up with them.

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