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Merchant Services FAQs

Merchant Services, Account Approval, and Benefits
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What does Bank of America Merchant Services offer me and my business?

Bank of America Merchant Services is a global leader in payments, eCommerce and security solutions. It helps clients of all sizes effectively manage and grow their businesses by enabling them to deliver a great commerce experience for their customers. The company processes more than 16.6 billion transactions at approximately 705,000 merchant locations throughout the United States, Canada and Europe. Solutions include credit/debit card processing, check acceptance, point-of-sale devices, TransArmor Data Protection, eCommerce services, next-business-day access to funds, and much more!

How can my business begin accepting credit and debit cards?

You're in the right place! Bank of America Merchant Services provides a wide variety of credit, debit, and mobile wallet payment acceptance/processing solutions to help you deliver a great experience to your customers. The first step is to visit this webpage to begin exploring the point-of-sale hardware, software, and accessory options. Getting up and running is easier than you think!

Why should I accept credit and debit cards?

Accepting credit cards, debit cards, and mobile wallet payments provides a variety of options for your customers and can help improve their checkout experiences. By accepting these forms of payment, you may attract customers who prefer the convenience of credit or debit cards, want to collect credit card rewards (such as airline miles), or appreciate other credit card benefits such as purchase protection. Essentially, you're letting people pay the way they want to pay, which can enhance the shopping experience.

What kinds of payments will I be able to accept?

Bank of America Merchant Services will work with you to make sure you can securely accept the payment types that make the most sense for your business. Options include (but are not limited to) Mastercard®, Visa®, American Express®, Discover®, debit cards, mobile wallet, checks, and EBT.

How long does the approval process take? How long until I can begin accepting card payments?

The account approval process is typically completed in two to three business days. Once you are approved, we'll ship your payment-processing device(s), and typically you'll be accepting card payments from customers within 5-7 days.

How quickly will I receive funds from credit card transactions?

As soon as the next business day if you have a Bank of America business checking account. Additionally, there is no monthly fee on a Bank of America Business checking account for active Bank of America Merchant Services account users, saving you money.

I'm not an expert in all of this. How do I know what I need for my business?

This website makes it easy for you to explore solutions that may meet your needs. Click here to begin exploring your options. Want to speak to one of our business consultants? Please call 1.888.296.3532 (Monday-Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m., Sat. 9:30 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. EST).

Point-of-Sale hardware (Card-Acceptance Devices)
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Where can I find a point-of-sale (POS) credit card machine?

Bank of America Merchant Services offers a wide variety of POS devices that will enable you to accept card payments at your place of business or on the go. Choose from basic credit card terminals to full-featured business management solutions that do more so your business can do more. Click here to begin exploring POS solutions that help you do it all: take payments, view inventory, track sales, manage employees, and much more.

I already have a card-acceptance device/terminal. Can I use it with my Bank of America Merchant Services account?

We'll work with you to determine if your device can be used with our card processing service; just give us a call at 1.888.296.3532. If your device won't work, we'll recommend a POS solution to meet your needs. Getting up and running is easier than you think!

How do I enable 3G or LTE connectivity, and how much does it cost?

To enable the 3G or LTE functionality of Clover Flex and Clover Mini, merchant must have a 3G or LTE data plan through T-Mobile® or AT&T®. The devices come with an AT&T® SIM card and merchants can enroll in an AT&T® data plan through the Clover App Market for an additional monthly charge. To enable the devices with a T-Mobile® data plan, merchants must separately purchase a T-Mobile® SIM card and enroll in a T-Mobile® data plan.

What Clover devices connect to the kitchen printer?

Clover Station and Clover Mini can connect to a kitchen printer as long as the devices are on the same local area network (LAN).

What Clover devices connect to the cash drawer?

The Clover Station and Clover Mini (if on the Register or Register Lite software plan) can connect to a cash drawer via the RJ-11 6P6C cable.

Fees / Merchant Costs
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What is a "chargeback" and why might I receive one?

A "chargeback" is a processed credit card transaction that is reversed (charged back to a merchant) because the customer or his/her bank found something wrong with the transaction. If you have a question about a chargeback, please contact your business consultant or Bank of America Merchant Services at 1.800.430.7161

If I complete an online merchant services application from your website and, as part of that application process, purchase a card-processing solution (such as a Clover device) from your website using my credit card, when will my credit card be charged?

You will not be charged for the equipment until your application for a merchant account has been approved. However, you will see a pending authorization for the purchase amount from the time of purchase until account approval.

Security / Fraud Protection
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I'm worried about the security of storing my client's credit card numbers on my internal system. Anything you can do to help?

We are committed to helping our merchants protect card data with advanced security tools that encrypt and tokenize each transaction, so sensitive customer payment information does not enter your system through your point of sale system. If you don't have payment data, then thieves cannot steal your customers' card information. Clover devices include TransArmor Data Protection at no additional charge, while the FD130 terminal requires you to purchase TransArmor Data Protection for an additional monthly fee.
For information regarding security on other terminals, please contact a Bank of America Merchant Services business consultant.

What is EMV® and how does it benefit my business?

EMV® stands for EuroPay®, Mastercard® and Visa® — the companies that originally lead the chip-technology effort. EMVCO, LLC manages the effort today and is overseen by six member organization: Visa®, Mastercard®, Discover®, American Express®, JCB® and Union Pay®. Chip technology provides a higher level of card security that helps protect against certain types of counterfeit fraud, which can help your business by resulting in fewer disputes and chargebacks.

eCommerce / Web based Solution
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Why should I also sell online? Won't I be competing with myself?

Selling online offers "brick and mortar" retailers an opportunity to grow their businesses through a cost-effective additional sales channel. Open 7 days a week, 24 hours a day, an online store is not limited by time or geography. In addition, electronic commerce offers many new avenues for building a broader customer base.

How can I accept credit card payments online?

Bank of America Merchant Services offers reliable eCommerce payment gateways that will enable you to: accept card payments via a web portal; add a payment page to your website; or build a fully customized online payment solution. Please call 1.888.296.3532 (Monday-Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m., Sat. 9:30 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. EST) so we can help you grow online.

Equipment Return Policy
  • This return policy applies only to equipment purchased online using your credit card from Bank of America Merchant Services.
  • You must call Customer Support (800-430-7161) within 30 days of the shipment date of your equipment (sometimes referred to herein as “payments device(s)”) to initiate the refund process.
  • The returned equipment must arrive at the return address we provide you within 60 days of the shipment date of your equipment. You cannot return equipment to Bank of America retail locations or banking centers.
  • You are responsible for the cost of shipping the equipment back to the return address provided. These costs will not be refunded.
  • The equipment must be repackaged with all cords, adapters, accessories, and documentation that were included when you received the equipment.
  • Returned equipment must be in new condition. If returned equipment is not in new condition for any reason, including due to damage that occurred during shipment, the equipment is not eligible for refund.
  • This return policy is limited to purchases of 3 payment devices or less.
  • If all conditions above are satisfied, you will receive a full refund on the price of the returned equipment to the credit card used to purchase the equipment.
  • To obtain the status of your returned equipment and refund, please contact Customer Support at 800-430-7161.
  • This return policy does not supersede terms and conditions related to returns already contractually agreed to between Bank of America Merchant Services, or any of its subsidiaries, and its clients. To the extent of a conflict between this return policy and such other terms and conditions, such other terms and conditions will govern.
Payment Services Key Terms
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New to payment services? Get up to speed in no time.


The consumer/owner of the card used to make a purchase.


The business accepting card payments for products or services sold to the cardholder.

Issuer (Issuing Bank)

The financial institution or other organization that issued the payment card to the cardholder.

Card Organization or Card Network

A network (such as Visa® and Mastercard®) that acts as a conduit between the acquirer and issuer for authorizing and funding transactions.

Payment Processor

A payment processor is a company — contracted by the merchant — to handle credit, debit and gift card transactions. The processor provides services to support authorization, capture, and other related processing services.


Settlement is the process through which a merchant receives funds for a transaction with a customer. It is the exchange of funds between a card issuer and an acquiring bank to complete a cleared transaction, and the payment to a merchant for the amount of each card sale that has been submitted into the network.

Merchant Account

A merchant account allows you to accept and process card payments, and get funded for your transactions. Your merchant account also allows issuing banks to challenge disputed and fraudulent transactions and take back funds for those transactions in accordance with the card network rules.

Dips, swipes and taps

A card reader accepts payment information when a chip card is inserted (dipped) into a terminal, a magnetic stripe is swiped, or data is exchanged with a chip in close proximity (tapped).

Contactless Payment

Customers can use credit cards, debit cards, smart phones and other mobile devices equipped with radio-frequency identification (RFID), near field communication (NFC) or Magnetic Secure Transmission (MST) to make secure payments with just a tap against a card reader.

Interchange Fees

Charged to you by the payment processor and paid to the bank that issued the card. Interchange fees are usually stated as a percentage of the total transaction plus a flat charge per transaction. This fee helps cover authorization costs, handling expenses, fraud, and credit losses. Your payment processor doesn’t receive any revenue from interchange fees, and interchange rates don't vary among processors.

Processing Fees

These fees are set by the payment processor and charged to the merchant in exchange for card processing services.