Card Acceptance Requirements: Quick Refresher

June 26, 2014 Moneris

Are you and your staff following card brand rules and regulations when processing credit card payments? 

Are you following some requirements?For example, you cannot require a minimum purchase amount before you accept credit or debit cards as a means of payment – your customers can report you to the card brands for this type of behavior. Here are a few requirements to help you avoid penalties and keep your business running smoothly through the busy summer months.

Are you following some of the key requirements?

  • No Surcharges: Manually adding an additional dollar amount, also known as a surcharge, on top of a transaction amount paid for with a credit card or Visa Debit card is prohibited. Surcharges are permitted on Interac® transactions provided the Interac rules and regulations regarding surcharging are followed.
  • No Transaction limits: You cannot require a minimum or maximum transaction amount for Visa®, MasterCard®, Interac® or Discover® card purchases.
  • Universal card acceptance: If you have a payment processing agreement with a processor for accepting cards from a major card brand, you must accept all of their cards (e.g. Visa Classic®, Visa Gold®, Visa Infinite®) – you cannot pick and choose which cards to accept. For example, you cannot decline premium card transactions simply because they have a higher fee.
  • Masking card account numbers:The card account number on receipts must be masked (partially hidden). As part of Moneris’ commitment to security, all Moneris payment solutions are set up to automatically take care of this for you.

Customers can report to their card issuer when a merchant is not following any of the above requirements during an in-store, e-commerce or mobile transaction. Customers can contact their card issuer even if they do not proceed with the transaction. If the merchant is using a Moneris payment solution, we investigate the claims and help you better understand the proper card acceptance requirements.

Thanks to this merchant education, breaches of card acceptance requirements have decreased by more than 40% over the last three years1. Knowing the requirements will help you make it through the summer without breaking a sweat.

To review publically available card brand rules and regulations for each card, visit VisaMasterCard and Interac online.

Do you have questions about consumer rights? Email

1Moneris Compliance Program Data, 2014

® MONERIS, MONERIS & Design, and MONERIS SOLUTIONS & Design are registered trade-marks of Moneris Solutions Corporation (Moneris). VISA, Visa Classic, Visa Gold, Visa Infinite is a registered trade-mark of Visa International. MASTERCARD is a registered trade-mark of MasterCard International Incorporated. INTERAC is a registered trade-mark of Interac Inc. DISCOVER is a registered trade-mark of Discover Financial Services. All other marks or registered trade-marks are the property of their respective owners. The information in this newsletter is provided solely for informational purposes and is not intended to be legal, financial or other professional advice.

About the Author


Moneris processes more than 3 billion credit and debit card transactions a year, for over 350,000 merchant locations across North America. We have over 1,300 dedicated employees who understand transaction processing and know how to make it work for you.

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