Jump to content
Latest News: (loading..)

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

phi148

Charge credit card again AFTER the initial sale... legal ?

Recommended Posts

Hi All,

 

We deal largely in selling large items that are too big for Fedex or UPS.  They require a LTL freight carrier.

 

That being said, sometimes our customers choose to add delivery services (Like liftgate) AFTER the initial sale.

 

Unfortunately, when a customer adds a delivery service, my company gets charged for it.  Going after the customer to get their credit card information again and attempt to charge them is usually a huge problem.

 

Since OSCommerce does not store credit card information, I don't have a way to "recharge" them if they add any additional services after the initial sale.

 

I think I found a way around that, as Authorize.net offers a "CIM" service where they store credit card information on their system.  This would allow me to RECHARGE a customer should they add any services.

 

That being said, is it LEGAL to do that?   I would have in my terms & conditions that we would charge them if they add additional services... but I wasn't sure if that really is a legal thing to do.

 

Any thoughts?

 

Thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can't comment on the strict legality, but making sure that they know the implications of adding services would cover you morally.

 

You could add a banner to the shipping page to make sure they understand it will cost them if they add services later. You could extend/replace this by obtaining their (generic) consent with a popup and tick box. If you know what the added services will cost them, you could add the prices to the confirmation email - or if it varies, give them a way of finding out.

 

I'm imagining that you're offering different levels of service in checkout, and the practicality is that they can upgrade later.

 

If you're selling up front the possibility of a later upgrade as an added service, that's going to lead to happier customers than hitting some of them with a charge they weren't expecting because they didn't read the small print. It may encourage some people to buy who wouldn't otherwise. If there's more admin for you, think about charging a bit more for a later upgrade than booking it in the first place.


For a new install or if your store isn't mobile-friendly, get the community-supported responsive osCommerce (2.3.4.1 CE) here: https://github.com/gburton/Responsive-osCommerce/archive/2341-Frozen.zip

Working on generalising bespoke solutions for Quickbooks integration, Easify integration and pay4later (DEKO) integration at 2.3.x

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I dont know what country you are from so its very difficult to offer advice on specific country legislation.

 

I would be very careful however with doing something like this. You do actually need the customers permission to use their cards, and you also need them to give you the pin numbers. The ramifications of you getting caught doing this may be hurtful to you and your business.

 

Why cant you work out a way of adding shipping at the point of sale. There are addons that add specific shipping costs to products, so something could be done. Failing that make them select a collect from store service and dont charge, that way they will know that they have to collect from you.


REMEMBER BACKUP, BACKUP AND BACKUP

Before installing the official version of oscommerce first look at a responsive version here

It's very easy to over complicate what are simple things in life

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can't comment on the strict legality, but making sure that they know the implications of adding services would cover you morally.

 

You could add a banner to the shipping page to make sure they understand it will cost them if they add services later. You could extend/replace this by obtaining their (generic) consent with a popup and tick box. If you know what the added services will cost them, you could add the prices to the confirmation email - or if it varies, give them a way of finding out.

 

I'm imagining that you're offering different levels of service in checkout, and the practicality is that they can upgrade later.

 

If you're selling up front the possibility of a later upgrade as an added service, that's going to lead to happier customers than hitting some of them with a charge they weren't expecting because they didn't read the small print. It may encourage some people to buy who wouldn't otherwise. If there's more admin for you, think about charging a bit more for a later upgrade than booking it in the first place.

 

Very good advice.  I like your suggestion regarding the check box / similar to a "must agree to terms" check box at checkout.  Because you are correct, not many people read the fine print!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I dont know what country you are from so its very difficult to offer advice on specific country legislation.

 

I would be very careful however with doing something like this. You do actually need the customers permission to use their cards, and you also need them to give you the pin numbers. The ramifications of you getting caught doing this may be hurtful to you and your business.

 

Why cant you work out a way of adding shipping at the point of sale. There are addons that add specific shipping costs to products, so something could be done. Failing that make them select a collect from store service and dont charge, that way they will know that they have to collect from you.

 

I live in the United States.

 

I offer many shipping options at the point of sale.  The customers simply do not purchase it most of the time.  Then, at time of delivery, they end up using a service that they did not purchase, like "liftgate".... and then I get charged for it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@@phi148

Since I commented on your CIM question, I'll expand here.  You can do that wiht AIM also within either 60 or 90 day of the original charge.  I'm in the US and I've been doing this for many years without a problem.  However, I always let my customer know the amount of the addon charge.  Usualy, I just email them and I've never had a problem. 

 

Doesn't Fedex contact you ahead of time when someone adds a liftgate or such option?  I know it can be expensive, so I get your point.  Shipping is one of the hardest parts for me also mainly in dimensional weight charges.


I'm not really a dog.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In the US, the exact laws pertaining to you will depend on whether it's intrastate (all within one state) or interstate commerce (Federal regulations apply). Your credit card processor is holding the CC information, so you don't have to worry about PCI-DSS and other aspects of CC security. I take it that adding "liftgate" service would be something arranged directly between the customer and the shipper, and not through you, otherwise there would be no issue of the shipper charging you for it and your being unable to easily bill the customer. Is this something you can clarify in advance between you and the shipper: "Customer add-ons such as liftgate service are to be charged COD directly to the customer"?

 

If customer add-ons to the shipping bill are charged back to you, it would be quite logical and reasonable for you to be legally able to pass it back to the customer, so long as there's a paper trail showing that they requested it. I would think that so long as you make it clear up front that additional shipping services will be charged to the customer's credit card, you should be covered in court (don't ever bet the business, though, that legal cases follow any sort of logic!). Don't bury such a notice in the fine print; at a minimum place it prominently in the shipping charges area where the shipping and handling figures are given: "You agree that any additional shipping services (for example, liftgate) requested by you after the submission of this order will be charged to your credit card."


If you are running the "official" osC 2.3.4 or 2.3.4.1 download, your installation is obsolete! Get (stable) Frozen or (unstable) Edge. See also the naming convention and the latest community-supported responsive "Edge" release

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@@phi148

Since I commented on your CIM question, I'll expand here.  You can do that wiht AIM also within either 60 or 90 day of the original charge.  I'm in the US and I've been doing this for many years without a problem.  However, I always let my customer know the amount of the addon charge.  Usualy, I just email them and I've never had a problem. 

 

Doesn't Fedex contact you ahead of time when someone adds a liftgate or such option?  I know it can be expensive, so I get your point.  Shipping is one of the hardest parts for me also mainly in dimensional weight charges.

 

Hi John,

 

I guess i'm a little confused.  I don't see anywhere in my authorize.net admin area where I can RECHARGE the customer again within 60 or 90 days.  I only see an option to refund the customer.

 

I don't use Fedex or UPS.  My products are too large.  They ship via LTL freight carriers... and I only find out they used liftgate when I get the bill.  Sometimes the delivery driver themselves encourage they use it!  Argg!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In the US, the exact laws pertaining to you will depend on whether it's intrastate (all within one state) or interstate commerce (Federal regulations apply). Your credit card processor is holding the CC information, so you don't have to worry about PCI-DSS and other aspects of CC security. I take it that adding "liftgate" service would be something arranged directly between the customer and the shipper, and not through you, otherwise there would be no issue of the shipper charging you for it and your being unable to easily bill the customer. Is this something you can clarify in advance between you and the shipper: "Customer add-ons such as liftgate service are to be charged COD directly to the customer"?

 

If customer add-ons to the shipping bill are charged back to you, it would be quite logical and reasonable for you to be legally able to pass it back to the customer, so long as there's a paper trail showing that they requested it. I would think that so long as you make it clear up front that additional shipping services will be charged to the customer's credit card, you should be covered in court (don't ever bet the business, though, that legal cases follow any sort of logic!). Don't bury such a notice in the fine print; at a minimum place it prominently in the shipping charges area where the shipping and handling figures are given: "You agree that any additional shipping services (for example, liftgate) requested by you after the submission of this order will be charged to your credit card."

 

Unfortunately COD is not available.  It is just the nature of LTL freight.

 

I agree that adding a notice so it is clear is the way to go.  Thanks!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@@phi148

Hi Bill,

 

Search a customer that you had a charge for using the A.net search function.  You'll see a button labeled "view rebillable transactions" on the top right of the table showing the customer name you searched.  When you click that you will see all the transactions that can still be added on.  I just checked one of my customers and his oldest is Aug 1st. 

 

If you need more help let me know and I can walk you through the A.net parts.  I know it pretty well.


I'm not really a dog.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@@phi148

Hi Bill,

 

Search a customer that you had a charge for using the A.net search function.  You'll see a button labeled "view rebillable transactions" on the top right of the table showing the customer name you searched.  When you click that you will see all the transactions that can still be added on.  I just checked one of my customers and his oldest is Aug 1st. 

 

If you need more help let me know and I can walk you through the A.net parts.  I know it pretty well.

 

 

Thanks John! 

 

That appears to do the trick!  60-90 days is a good grace period to have when using the AIM method.

 

The CIM method of authorize.net does allow ease of use for a returning customer as their card is saved for them.  (And helps us by not having to ask them for it again if a phone order).

 

Each have their pro's & con's  :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Addendum: to cover yourself legally, also put a reminder (about extra shipping services) in the confirmation email sent to the customer. That way it's harder for them to claim that they never saw anything warning that their card would be charged. Short of sending Tony over to whack them over the head with a pipe, that's probably the best you can do to drive home the point.


If you are running the "official" osC 2.3.4 or 2.3.4.1 download, your installation is obsolete! Get (stable) Frozen or (unstable) Edge. See also the naming convention and the latest community-supported responsive "Edge" release

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

×