Is your company receiving the benefits the "regulated debit card" processing rates?

Effective Oct 2011, the Durbin Amendment has mandated the reduction of charges for processing "regulated" debit cards. A regulated debit card is one issued by a bank with over $10,000,000.00 in assets. These are normally national or large regional banks. The local bank, savings and loan or credit union would not fall under these regs.

The government wanted to reduce the cost of processing these cards & mandated the reduction of fee to 0.05%. This reduction of fees was placed on the card companies. The trouble is, as usual, that congress didn't do the research to get it right!

The key here is that the card companies were mandated BUT the processors were not mandated to pass the savings along to the merchant. Now many, like the companies we represent have passed these savings along. However there are many processors keeping this windfall, adding millions of dollars in extra profit to their coffers!

If you are like most business owners, you are too busy to keep up on all of these things. You would hope that your merchant services professional would keep you informed and see that you got this break in fees. If you hired a professional, there should be nothing to worry about. But if you hired a sales rep that called you with the greatest lowest rate (for today anyhow) we recommend you re-examine your options.

Are you saving you over .90% or is your merchant service processor keeping it?

By making sure you know whom you are dealing with, someone that has a reputable service for a number of years, one that will give you references and the time to check them out, you will most likely receive these rate reductions when they come along. You'll receive the service that you should expect from a professional. The quick hitting, love them and leave them phone or "in town for one day" salesperson might save you for a month or two but in the long run, you will most likely pay the price, the long price!

Maybe you need to take a long look ----right now ---at your last month's merchant services statement. Look to see if you are receiving that "Durbin Rate" on 60% to 70% of your debit cards. It's your money, we advise you keep it.

Dave Proy is a 12 year veteran in the card payment industry and can be reached at