What To Expect When You Apply For a Merchant Account

Here’s What To Expect When You Apply For a Merchant Account

If you’ve decided to tap into the credit card market, you’re probably ready to open your first merchant account. However, you’re not sure of the process or what to expect. You might be wondering about the required paperwork and the duration of the process.

Underwriting is a part of the process

Since merchant banks take a risk with every company they approve, they want to ensure that your business will be able to handle incidental fees that cover possible chargebacks and other potential losses for the bank. Some banks will have a department that can help with the underwriting process, but you will most likely have to work with an experienced merchant account provider who can underwrite your business if you want assistance with this part of the process.


The process starts with a written application

The underwriting process starts with an application that can sometimes be completed online, depending upon which merchant account provider you use. This application will typically require information about the business, along with your EIN, routing numbers, processing volumes, business start date, contact information, authorized signer information and others.

You may need more than one merchant account

In some cases, you might need two separate merchant accounts, if your business engages in two completely separate kinds of business-types.  For example, if you run a restaurant and you also repair computers, these two businesses will probably each need their own merchant account, even if both functions are performed by the same person or company.

You may need to provide supporting documents

The number of documents that you have to provide to the underwriter depends on the processing volume you intend to use. At the most basic level, if you plan to process a few thousand dollars each month, you will probably need a voided check and some kind of identification. Some businesses may be asked to provide information such as several months of financial statements, a lease or utility bills, or possibly marketing materials. If the underwriter requests a specific document that you don’t have access to, just let them know!  They can usually either work without that document or suggest a substitute.

For more information about the process of opening a merchant account, or to sign up for a merchant account please call (888) 924-2743 or go to Charge.com.


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