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US Merchant Systems Review
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Updated 1/18/2019: The US Merchant Systems website (usms.com) is currently unavailable. The website bears the notice that it is “under construction,” but it is unclear how long this has been the case. Google reports the business as being permanently closed, and its failure to respond to its most recent BBB complaint is further evidence that US Merchant Systems is no longer an active business. If you have any information about the current status of US Merchant Systems (including any possible rebrandings or DBAs), please share it in the comment section below this review.
US Merchant Systems (usms.com), also known as USMS, is a Fremont, California-based merchant account provider and reseller of EVO Payments International contracts. The company appears to have recently launched a venture called “Agora Advantage” (agoraadvantage.com) that bears a resemblance to conventional multi-level marketing (MLM) business models. Founded in 1992, USMS’s headquarters can be found at 48073 Fremont Blvd, Fremont, California 94538, and USMS is a registered ISO and MSP of Deutsche Bank AG, New York. Stuart Rosenbaum is listed as the CEO of USMS.
- Sales & Marketing: US Merchant Systems appears to hire independent sales representatives and has received a low-to-moderate complaint total about its sales team.
- Costs & Contract: US Merchant Systems offers a three-year contract through EVO Payments International with an early termination fee between $250 and $350.
- Complaints & Service: US Merchant Systems has received more than 15 public complaints.
- BBB Rating: US Merchant Systems has an “A+” rating with the Better Business Bureau and has received nine complaints in the past three years.
- Rates & Fees: How Merchants Got The Best Rates With US Merchant Systems
US Merchant Systems Customer Reviews
Here's What Their Clients Say
|Total Online Complaints||15+|
|Live Customer Support||Yes|
|Most Common Complaint||Hidden Fees|
We are currently able to locate more than 15 US Merchant Systems complaints on various consumer protection websites, some of which describe the company as a scam or a ripoff. The most common complaints about the company have to do with nondisclosure of fees, specifically the early termination fee, but there are also reviews that mention fund holds, poor customer service, and nondisclosure of the automatic contract renewal policy. There is some evidence that a portion of the company’s negative reviews have been filed against one of its former subsidiaries known as “Bankcard Empire,” but given the fact that the two companies have not been affiliated for several years, these complaints have been disregarded. USMS’s complaint volume is low for its size and time in business, but the consistency of the complaints inclines us to award the company a “B” in this category.
US Merchant Systems Online Ratings
Here's How They Rate Online
|Product & Service Complaints||2|
|Billing & Collection Complaints||3|
|Advertising & Sales Complaints||3|
|Guarantee & Warranty Complaints||0|
US Merchant Systems has been an accredited business of the Better Business Bureau since 2005 and is currently showing an “A+” rating. The company has had nine complaints filed against it in the last three years, with three of these due to billing and collections issues, two related to the product or service, three as a result of advertising issues, and one due to a delivery problem. Of these complaints, USMS has successfully resolved two. The remaining seven either were resolved to the dissatisfaction of the merchant or did not receive a final response from the merchant. In light of these figures, we agree with the BBB‘s rating.
US Merchant Systems Fees, Rates & Costs
A Closer Look at The Contract
|Early Termination Fee||$295|
|PCI Compliance Fee||$7.95 Per Month|
|Equipment Lease Terms||Variable|
The standard US Merchant Systems agreement (available below) appears to be a three year agreement through EVO Merchant Services that includes automatic renewal for one-year terms, an early termination fee of $295, a $7.95 monthly PCI Compliance fee, a $19.95 monthly PCI noncompliance fee, and other conditional fees associated with long-term equipment leases. The company’s early termination fee appears to be the largest cause for complaint among merchants, as it seems to be inconsistently disclosed by USMS sales agents. Overall, these contract terms are fairly average for the industry, and they are very similar to those offered directly through EVO Merchant Services. We therefore award the company a “C” rating in this category. See the USMS Merchant Agreement.
US Merchant Systems Employee Reviews & Sales Tacitcs
Should You Work For Them?
|Employs Independent Resellers||Yes|
|Advertises Deceptive Rates||No|
|Discloses All Important Terms||No|
US Merchant Systems appears to primarily market its services through the use of independent sales agents and ISOs across the country. This hiring practice is common within the credit card processing industry and often leads to many complaints among merchants, as independent sales agents typically receive little training or oversight. This appears to be a slight issue for US Merchant Systems, as we are able to locate a low-to-moderate number of USMS negative reviews that allege nondisclosure of contract terms and misrepresentation of rates by sales agents. The company’s Agora Advantage venture also appears to encourage its members to sign up other business owners for discounted services in exchange for a membership fee, so merchants might be solicited by fellow business owners as well as USMS sales agents. As a point in the company’s favor, USMS does not appear to engage in deceptive rate quoting in its official materials.
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