HELP HELP HELP HELP!!!!
4 years ago we decided to take credit card payments for our small business. For almost 4 years, we ran at least $6,000 in credit card sales from the company, CARD PAYMENT SYSTEMS, our best month, maybe $11,000. Life was good.
This year in October, we stumbled across an awesome advertising campaign which tripled our business sales. In one month we went from an average of $6,000 to $19,000 in sales. We were just estatic!!!!!!
One gray day in October we went to withdrawl some of our profit to pay one of our distributors for some stock. !!!! The money had not been deposited into our account. It had been at least 1 1/2 weeks since our last batch report! Something was wrong, as our automatically deposited money usually only takes 3 business days to show up in our bank account.
We immeadiately called CARD PAYMENT SYSTEMS. Of course, like usual, we had to leave a message and receive a call back. A few days later, no call, (AS USUAL!!), and we gave them a call back. Finally a human voice! We told her what the problem was and she had said she would call right back after she researched it. A few days later we received a phone call saying that they had put a hold on our account because we charged too many credit cards and went over our monthly alloted limit. ?????? WHAT????
After conversing back and forth for sometime, she told us that in very small print on our contract was something to the effect that we would not charge over $4,000 in sales per month. In all fairness, if that is what the contract said, so be it. We understand. But why had the last 4 years of continously charging over $4,000 been okay? We still to this day have not received a copy of a highligthed contract with the statement showing we are only allowed $4,000 a month.
We understood that they were going to hold the money for a couple of weeks to make sure we were not conducting and credit card fraud. 2 weeks had passed so we called them back to see when we could get this money, as our business was in dire need of it!!!!! Bad news. Now they had told us that they were going to hold $10,000 of our money for 6 months (180 days) to make sure that we were not conducting credit card fraud and to cover any chargebacks that may occur in the next 6 months.
This was going to cause a lot of problems! 1st of all, our business was losing out on $10,000 of our monies. We needed this money to conduct business. We needed the money to buy our stock to ship to our customers. We needed the money for shipping expenses!!! We pulled it off to the best of our ability with our personal account money. There were about 10 orders we could not fill where our customers already were charged from thier credit cards. We couldn't afford to buy thier stock and ship it out, so we knew we would be receiving about 10 chargebacks within the next couple of months. We contacted these customers and told them the items were out of stock. How could we go into a long story about having no money? We just couldn't afford to run our business out of our personal money. We were broke. To this day, we are broke.
The kicker is, they told us that they would be holding the $10,000 of our money for any chargebacks that occured within 180 days. Since then, we did receive 10 chargebacks and do you think they came out of that money they are holding? Hell NO! It came out of our personal account! If we knew this, we would have just gone into negative balance and bought and paid for the 10 orders we couldn't afford in the 1st place. Each time Card Payment Systems does one of the chargebacks, our account goes into negative #'s and we receive an OVERDRAFT PROTECTION FEE of $-30.00 each day our account is negative. We've lost 1,000's of dollars and our finanaces are a mess. We feel hopeless!
Furthermore, We called them when the 1st chargeback came out in November. Do you think anyone has called us back? HELL NO! We've called them and left messages at least 25 different times since December to inquire why any chargebacks are coming out of our PERSONAL ACCOUNTS and not our money they are holding! NO CALL BACK! The last time we called, last week, the voice mailbox was FULL!!!!! It has been 180 days last week since this has happened and we are now just awaiting our monies! WHY WONT THEY CALL US BACK? They are rip-off artists, that is why!!!
I do not know if this is legal to hold our money and do it incorrectly and never call us back. We are so lost and do not know what to do. If thier is any legal eagles out there, please chime in. We are distraught and broke. We want to get on with our lives and build our business from scratch again.