Merchant Payment Services Review

Merchant Payment Services Overview

Merchant Payment Services May Have Overcharged You

If you accepted credit cards through Merchant Payment Services or any other credit card processing company between 2017 and 2019, recent changes to the law may entitle you to refunds of certain debit card and credit card processing errors and overcharges. See this post to find out if your were among the businesses affected and to learn how you can get your money back.

A Harbortouch Reseller

Founded in 1990, Merchant Payment Services is a merchant account provider that serves most standard risk business types in the United States. The company appears to be a reseller of Harbortouch, and it specializes in retail merchant accounts, restaurant merchant accounts, and spa merchant accounts.

Merchant Payment Services Location and Ownership

Merchant Payment Services is a registered ISO/MSP of WestAmerica Bank, 1108 Fifth Avenue, San Rafael, California 94901, and is headquartered at 1701 Delco Park Dr, Dayton, Ohio 45420. Thomas Griffith is the president of Merchant Payment Services.

Merchant Payment Services Review Table of Contents

  • Costs & Contract: Merchant Payment Services offers variable pricing that may be similar in structure to Harbortouch’s contracts. The company relies on Authorize.Net as a payment gateway.
  • Complaints & Service: Merchant Payment Services has received fewer than 10 public complaints.
  • BBB Rating: Merchant Payment Services has an “A+” rating and has received 1 complaint in the past 3 years. The company has been accredited by the Better Business Bureau since 2004.
  • Sales & Marketing: Merchant Payment Services does not appear to hire independently contracted agents and has not received any complaints about its sales team.
  • Rates & Fees: How Merchants Got The Best Rates With Merchant Payment Services
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Products & Services Offered

Types of Businesses Served

  • Retail
  • Mobile
  • E-commerce

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Merchant Payment Services Rates, Fees, and Costs

Key Points

Swiped Rate 1.00% - 4.99%
Keyed-in Rate 1.00% - 4.99%
Virtual Terminal Rate 2.90% + $0.30
Payment Gateway Fee $25 Per Month
Batch Fee $0.15
Monthly Service Fee $10
Annual Fee $79
Equipment Lease Terms 36 Month (locked)

Variable Contract Terms

The MPS website previously stated that the standard Merchant Payment Services contract is a month-to-month agreement with no early termination fee, no setup fees, a monthly service fee of $5-$10, and tiered pricing. The company now states that some restrictions may apply to its “no contract” and “no cancellations fees” guarantees, and it does not list all of its per-transaction fees or its PCI compliance fees. The MPS website previously stated that none of its equipment is leased to merchants, but its partnership with Harbortouch may make it difficult for the company to make that guarantee now.

Virtual Terminal and Payment Gateway Pricing

In addition to its storefront payment processing services, Merchant Payment Services also dedicates a portion of its website that advertises its virtual terminal and payment gateway services, provided by Authorize.Net. A typical merchant agreement through Authorize.Net includes a transaction rate of 2.90% plus $0.30, a gateway fee of $25 per month, and a batch fee of $0.15. However, as a reseller of its services, Merchant Payment Services reserves the right to alter these terms and conditions.

Harbortouch Pricing Applies

Merchant Payment Services has reduced the amount of information disclosed about its pricing and fees on its website, and its partnership with Harbortouch suggests that it may now be offering contract terms closer to Harbortouch’s “C” rated contract terms. One complaint describes a $79 annual fee and a non-cancellable equipment lease through Harbortouch. However, we cannot find any other complaints about MPS’s pricing at this time, which indicates that most of its users are satisfied with the rates and fees they pay.

Read Your Contract Carefully

We have assigned Merchant Payment Services a “B” rating in this section. It does not appear to be competitive with the cheapest merchant account providers, but we have only seen one public complaint alleging higher-than-average costs. If you have any specific knowledge of the standard Merchant Payment Services contract, please share that information in the comment section below this review.

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Response from Merchant Payment Services

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Merchant Payment Services Complaints & Customer Reviews

Key Points

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

Clean Complaint Record

We are currently unable to locate any negative Merchant Payment Services reviews outside of the Better Business Bureau, which is a good sign that the company isn’t a ripoff or a scam. For a company that has been operating since 1990, having zero public complaints is an impressive feat.

Merchant Payment Services Lawsuits

We have not found any outstanding class-action lawsuits or FTC complaints filed against Merchant Payment Services. Dissatisfied merchants who wish to pursue a non-litigious course of action against the company should consider reporting it to the relevant supervisory organizations.

Merchant Payment Services Support Options

Merchant Payment Services offers phone support during its normal business hours and likely outsources after-hours support to its backend credit card processor. These channels appear to do a more-than-satisfactory job of resolving merchant complaints, and the company’s success rate is on par with the top merchant account providers for customer service.

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Response from Merchant Payment Services

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Merchant Payment Services BBB Rating Summary

Key Points - BBB

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

Under 5 Complaints

Merchant Payment Services currently has an “A+” rating with the Better Business Bureau and has been accredited since 2004. The company has received 1 complaint to its BBB profile in the past three years. This complaint was a billing or collection complaint and was resolved to the dissatisfaction of the merchant or did not receive a final response from the merchant.

What Merchants Say

Merchant Payment Services has not received any informal reviews, although it should be noted that these reviews are not subject to authentication by the BBB. The most recent complaint filed describes an undisclosed annual fee and early termination fee from Harbortouch:

To Whom It May Concern, We have tried to resolve this issue several times without success. It appears that there may be fraud/scam and/or misrepresentation involved. If this isn’t resolved or proven otherwise, we will contact the proper authorities, including the Federal Trade Commission. **** ******** Regional Sales Manager for Merchant Payment Services, contacted The Car Medic saying he/company he worked for represented the BBB. He provided us with a Statement Analysis by merchant Payment Services showing us that he/company could save us money by using their merchant account services. This analysis did NOT include any annual fee of $79. (The contract says “if applicable”, but never says that it did apply nor did this analysis reflect it). If you are now saying that this $79 applies to our contract prior to Aug 1, then the analysis was distorted and misled us into believing this “savings” he claimed that we were getting. Also, if this contract change applies, it begins in August for the upcoming year, Aug 1, 2017 through Aug 1, 2018, after our cancellation. Mr. Donohoo provided us with a Merchant Transaction Processing Agreement with Merchant Payment Services and Account Setup Form with Harbortouch. These were signed by **** ******, owner of The Car Medic, on 3/27/17. When **** ******* was contacted about finalized copies, he said these were the only copies of the agreement that we would receive. He also repeatedly stated that this was a month-to-month agreement with Harbortouch. We were anticipating that we were going out of business, so *********** and Merchant Payment Services were contacted, We were told that *********** required Merchant Account Cancellation Form be submitted and machine be returned. The cancellation form was submitted Aug 1, 2017 and the machine was received by *********** on Aug 14, 2017. A call was made to Harbortouch on Aug 2, 2017, spoke to ******* who verified that this was a month-to-month agreement and there were no termination fees. We are requesting that *********** stop their threats and requesting a payment of $1,145, which was never presented in writing as to how this amount was determined using our month-to-month contract. We were never notified in advance of the amount or when they were going to access the business bank account for this withdrawal resulting in a $25 fee on Aug 3, 2017, which you need to refund, incurred by us for insufficient funds. The only letter received from Harbortouch regarding cancellation just referenced returning the processing equipment with no mention of cancellation fees. We are requesting that Merchant Payment Services return $79 that was withdrawn on Aug 2, 2017 from our business account for an annual fee beginning in Aug 2017. When calling on Jul 14 to inform **** ******* about the cancellation procedures since he was our point of contact, we discovered he was no longer with the company, so calls were forwarded to *** ********. We were then told to go through Harbortouch for cancellation procedures. The Merchant Cancellation Form was signed on Aug 1, 2017, so there should not be any annual fee charge. We are requesting the BBB investigate what is going on with these agreements with these companies, request resolution to these charges/withdrawals and respond as to whether **** ******* with Merchant Payment Services misrepresented the fact that they were sponsored or supported by the BBB.

This merchant would likely have benefited from taking the steps to cancel a merchant account without paying a fee.

An “A” Performance Overall

Given Merchant Payment Services’s low complaint total and long period of time in business, we agree with the BBB’s grade.

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Response from Merchant Payment Services

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Truth In Marketing & Advertising

Key Points

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

In-House Sales Team

Merchant Payment Services appears to primarily market itself via strategic partnerships and inside sales channels. There is no evidence that the company employs independent sales agents at this time, and we cannot find any Merchant Payment Services complaints that accuse the company’s sales team of unethical conduct.

Improved Rate Quotes

At the time of an earlier update, the Merchant Payment Services website quoted a “Qualified Internet Discount Rate” of 1.99% plus $0.16-$0.26 and a “Qualified Retail Discount Rate” of 1.5% plus $0.16-$0.26. These tiered rate quotes may be an accurate reflection of the company’s Qualified rates, but they make no mention of the higher “Mid-Qualified” and “Non-Qualified” rates that merchants will pay for the majority of their transactions. Given that we are currently unable to locate these quotes, we will not lower Merchant Payment Services’s grade in this section.

No Red Flags

Merchant Payment Services does not employ any deceptive marketing strategies and has not received negative feedback from merchants regarding its sales staff. Merchants are nevertheless encouraged to request disclosure of all possible transaction fees, and to seek an independent third-party statement audit if they suspect that they are being overcharged.

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Response from Merchant Payment Services

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Merchant Payment Services Marketing Example

Merchant Payment Services Logo

Our Opinion of Merchant Payment Services

A Solid Option for Certain Business Types

Merchant Payment Services rates as a reliable merchant services provider according to all available information. The company has received very little negative feedback from merchants, but its contract terms through Harbortouch could present some issues for merchants seeking a month-to-month agreement. For retail and service industry merchants, Merchant Payment Services could potentially be an option on par with the top-rated payment processors if it did not enforce Harbortouch’s pricing.

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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 $1,156,834 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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