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A Sizable U.S. Credit Card Processor
North American Bancard, in operation since 1992, is a merchant account provider that has grown into one of the largest merchant services providers in the United States. North American Bancard is a large super ISO that specializes in providing credit card processing services supplied by First Data (now Fiserv) and Global Payments but manages its merchant customers directly with its own in-house customer support. The company also markets a mobile point-of-sale app and card reader called “PayAnywhere” and is the parent company of Electronic Payment Exchange, Humboldt Merchant Services, CDITech, Money Machine, Point & Pay, Velocity, and Argus Payments (now “Inovio“). In May 2017, North American Bancard acquired Total Merchant Services for an undisclosed sum. In September 2020, North American Bancard also acquired SALIDO, a leading hospitality technology provider. March 2022 saw the company acquire B2B payments firm Paytrace.
North American Bancard Payment Processing
As one of the largest payment processors in the world, North American Bancard processes all major debit and credit cards for any size of business. Among their extensive product and solution offerings are storefront web-based payments, EMV and NFC solutions, NAB PCI Plus security, integration with software such as Quickbooks, payment reports, touchless pay, discounts for cash payments, inventory and customer management, employee tools, loans, gift and loyalty programs, check processing, dispute management, and billing tools. In terms of payment options, they offer the Payanywhere family of card readers, smart terminals, smart POS, and pin pads; Igenico pin pads; e-commerce setups; the Authorize.net and USAePay payment gateways; and the NAB virtual terminal.
North American Bancard Location & Ownership
North American Bancard lists The Bancorp Bank, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; BMO Harris N.A., Chicago, Illinois; First Fresno Bank, Fresno, CA. Concord, California; and Citizens Bank N.A., Providence, RI., as its acquiring banks. The company is headquartered at 250 Stephenson Highway, Troy, Michigan 48083. Marc Gardner is the president and CEO of North American Bancard.
North American Bancard Review Table of Contents
- Costs & Contract: North American Bancard offers a three-year contract with a liquidated damages clause and an early termination fee of at least $295.
- Complaints & Service: North American Bancard complaints number more than 200 on public complaints forums.
- BBB Rating: North American Bancard has an “A+” rating despite having received 100 complaints and 40 reviews in the last 3 years. The company has been accredited by the Better Business Bureau since 2001.
- Sales & Marketing: North American Bancard hires independent sales agents and has received a moderate-to-high number of complaints about its sales practices.
Should You Trust North American Bancard?
Lawsuits, Reviews & Complaints
Here's Who We Trust.
Total Online Complaints
Live Customer Support
Most Common Complaint
Several Merchant Complaints
We have found a moderate-to-high number of negative North American Bancard complaints, many of which are filed on Ripoff Report and in the comment section of this review. The company appears to make some effort to respond to and resolve public complaints; however, North American Bancard would fare much better in this review if it did a better job of preventing the problems that are causing the complaints in the first place. If you have a North American Bancard complaint to make, please do so in the comments below.
Common Complaint Themes
Many of the complainants report difficulty resolving problems and minimal cooperation from North American Bancard prior to filing a public report. The most commonly reported problems are agents using deceptive sales tactics, hidden and surprise fees in the North American Bancard rates, sudden rises in fees shortly after service begins, non-disclosure of the service length agreement, and the cost of the early termination fee. Nearly all of these problems can be traced back to agents who fail to verbally disclose important terms of the contract. These agents are either unaware of the terms or rely on merchants to read the fine print prior to account setup; however, we hold providers responsible for their agent’s actions since the provider enforces the terms and conditions of the contract and sets the policies by which agents can sell their services.
North American Bancard Lawsuits and Fines
In September 2002, the State of Arizona filed a complaint against a merchant that processed through North American Bancard, a Nevada corporation called CP Direct, Inc., alleging violations of the Arizona Racketeering Act. CP Direct ultimately admitted to defrauding tens of thousands of customers by falsely advertising penis enlargement supplements. As a result, the company was ordered to pay restitution of more than $4 million and to forfeit assets totaling over $45 million. In May 2004, the receiver for CP Direct, Lawrence J. Warfield, filed suit against Marc Gardner of North American Bancard alleging violations under the RICO Act, conversion, and unjust enrichment.
Specifically, Warfield’s complaint alleged that Global Payments, the backend processor for North American Bancard, placed CP Direct on its watch list in under a year of processing due to an excessive rate of chargebacks. The complaint further alleges that as a result of this, North American Bancard advised CP Direct to create a new company and reapply for processing under the untarnished name. According to Warfield, CP Direct continued to accept its customers’ credit card payments under the fictitious and fraudulently maintained name of “Nutritional Supplements, Inc.” at the direction of North American Bancard. Warfield further claimed that CP Direct was ordered to pay a monthly consulting fee of $250,000 (plus bonuses of $50,000 for each million dollars over $8 million in monthly sales) directly to Marc Gardner as a condition of North American Bancard processing payments for the company. According to Warfield’s complaint, these payments totaled over $700,000. In July 2006, Marc Gardner was scheduled to be deposed in the case, but Marc Gardner’s counsel terminated his deposition immediately after he was sworn in.
Unfortunately, we are unable to locate any third-party sources or legal documents that explain how this suit was ultimately resolved. However, the parties were known to have reached a settlement amount in April 2006. It is therefore likely that the suit was settled. If you have any knowledge of how this case was resolved, please share that information in the comment section below this review.
In 2016, a number of suits were brought against North American Bancard regarding alleged illegal contacting of numerous parties by phone and fax. Allegedly, North American Bancard violated the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991 by autodialing phone numbers and sending out advertising faxes without consent of the receiver. Many of these suits have reached settlement, including a recent $2.2 million settlement over faxes to a Chicago chiropractor and others.
In April 2020, former employee Teresa Harwood filed suit against Marc Gardner of North American Bancard, alleging that Gardner had created an environment of sexism at the company that was hostile to women. The suit seems to be ongoing at the moment of this writing.
2021 saw a further settlement from North American Bancard in yet another alleged TCPA act violation.
North American Bancard Customer Service Options
North American Bancard offers phone and email customer support to all of its merchants and may also provide support for its subsidiaries’ merchant accounts.
We have located multiple North American Bancard customer service numbers:
(866) 485-8999 – Toll-Free General Customer Service
(877) 840-1952 – Sales
(866) 485-8999, ext 1200 – Tech Support
North American Bancard also offers a customer support form and a support bot on their website and the following customer service email addresses:
firstname.lastname@example.org – Customer Service
email@example.com – Sales
firstname.lastname@example.org – Tech Support
These channels are evidently significantly lacking when compared to top merchant account providers for great customer service.
Is the BBB Rating for North American Bancard Accurate?
Better Business Bureau Profile
See Which Processors Offer No Monthly Fees And No Contracts.
Product & Service Complaints
Billing & Collection Complaints
Advertising & Sales Complaints
Guarantee & Warranty Complaints
North American Bancard has been an accredited business with the Better Business Bureau since 2001. As of this review, the company has an “A+” rating with the BBB despite having 100 complaints filed against it in the last 36 months. 39 complaints were related to a product or service issue, 57 stemmed from issues with billing or collections, 3 were problems with advertising or sales, and 1 concerned a delivery issue. Only 36 of these 100 complaints were resolved by the company to the satisfaction of the merchant. The remaining 64 were resolved to the dissatisfaction of the merchant or received no final response.
What Merchants Say
In addition to those 100 complaints, the company has also received 40 informal reviews on its BBB profile. 34 of those reviews were negative, making only 4 positive in tone. The most recent negative review describes issues and a cancellation fee:
NAB was a poor choice by us for credit card processing. We had problems from day 1, NAB did little to resolve the issues. We ended up changing service companies and have been hounded ever since for an early cancellation charge. They take no fault in our need to change providers. I suggest that no one uses this company.
Merchants who find themselves in this situation may benefit from learning how to cancel service without paying a fee.
An “F” Performance Overall
In light of the company’s high complaint total and numerous negative reviews, we have adjusted the BBB’s rating to an “F.” BBB ratings are subject to merchant and user manipulation, especially when it comes to larger companies like North American Bancard. Read our ratings guide to learn more.
How Expensive is North American Bancard Service?
Rates, Fees, and Contract Terms
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Virtual Terminal Rate
1.00% - 4.99%
Payment Gateway Fee
Early Termination Fee
PCI Compliance Fee
Equipment Lease Terms
$39 Per Month
Variable Contract Terms
North American Bancard’s merchant account rates and fees vary from one merchant to the next based on a variety of factors, including each merchant’s business type, processing volume, and especially the agent setting up the account. The company states its standard contract rate begins at 1.69% while offering a pay-as-you-go rate of 2.69%. Despite this, the company lists their rates as being as low as 0.29% on their website. Merchants should be wary of company advertising deceptive rates as low as this. In addition to deceptive rates, merchant reviews reflect that the company charges an expensive monthly charge to lease point-of-sale equipment through them. It should be noted that most credit card terminals can be purchased for under $500. Non-cancellable, long-term leases mean a merchant can pay thousands for that same equipment making them a contract term to avoid.
Virtual Terminal and Payment Gateway Pricing
In addition to its storefront payment processing services, North American Bancard also dedicates a portion of its website to advertising its virtual terminal and payment gateway services. According to its website, the company offers 8 gateway options, including Authorize.Net and USAePay. Pricing will depend on which gateway a merchant utilizes. Additional rates and fees, including gateway fees, technical support fees, batch fees, and additional transaction rates typically apply to these e-commerce services.
North American Bancard’s standard contract (available below) has a service agreement of 36 months with what appears to be a Liquidated Damages Early Termination Fee that is automatically debited from a merchant’s checking account upon cancellation of service. Essentially, merchants who cancel service prior to the expiration of their contract will be expected to pay the remainder of any monthly fees that would have been assessed throughout the entire contract, with the minimum early termination fee costing $295. Due to this policy, merchants have reported cancellation fees totaling thousands of dollars. Additionally, merchants may also be subject to additional fees if they lease equipment and cancel early. Because of policies like this, we encourage merchants to check out our list of the providers of the best merchant accounts.
Other North American Bancard Fees
Based upon merchant reports, North American Bancard also charges a variety of unexpected monthly fees as well as an annual PCI Compliance fee of at least $79 (may vary). Learn everything you need to know about rates and how to get the lowest fees in “Fee Sweep: How to Get the Merchant Services You Need Without Getting Scammed.” See the North American Bancard Terms and Conditions.
Does North American Bancard Use Deceptive Marketing?
Advertising & Sales Strategy
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Employs Independent Resellers
Advertises Deceptive Rates
Discloses All Important Terms
“Hiring Mill” Practices
North American Bancard’s most frequently cited drawback seems to be its marketing practices. In particular, the company appears to function as a “hiring mill” that relies heavily upon recruiting independent agents and resellers. This marketing practice often results in problems for merchants and damage to a provider’s reputation because the sales practices of resellers are hard to control. This does not compare favorably to our list of best credit card processors.
Misleading Sales Tactics
In North American Bancard’s case, numerous North American Bancard complaints suggest that its agents are poorly trained on the terms and conditions of the company’s merchant account contract and are encouraged to sell expensive accounts in exchange for large commissions. In fact, a large number of North American Bancard complaints report that agents misrepresented fees and policies in order to persuade them into signing up for services. It also appears that North American Bancard’s underwriting policies do a poor job of screening out merchants that are likely to have their funds frozen.
Cause for Concern
The North American Bancard fees are listed on their website as rates “starting at just 0.29 percent, with no cancellation fees and a month-to-month agreement [and] free equipment.” We consider this language to be deceptive because a merchant signing up for North American Bancard’s services through an independent agent is in no way guaranteed these terms. Additionally, there is an ongoing class-action lawsuit regarding North American Bancard’s false advertising of its PayAnywhere mobile credit card readers as “free,” when in fact the company charges undisclosed monthly fees for the use of the equipment. In light of these ongoing issues, the company keeps its “D” rating as of this update. If you suspect that North American Bancard is charging you undisclosed fees, we recommend seeking a third-party statement audit to find and eliminate hidden costs.