Legal ambiguities have caused many banks to drop medical marijuana dispensaries from their merchant account roles. For business owners who feel that credit card processing is an integral part of their success, this rash of rejection notices from banks is more than a little distressing. It isn’t uncommon for the owner of a dispensary to sign up with a bank only to hear a few weeks later that their services are being withdrawn. A single law, the Bank Secrecy Act, is the source of all the trouble. It requires banks to report any suspicious activities. Put in place to keep an eye upon financial shenanigans and potential terrorist money laundering, the law is wreaking havoc in the medical marijuana industry. You may find more information at credit card processing.
When will Things Improve?
For business owners, this is really the crux of the matter. The medical marijuana industry is growing rapidly, and it needs access to the same services that other businesses have. That includes credit card processing. Legal experts, recognizing that the law is regulated by no less than five separate agencies, realize that the process may take some time. They expect that it will take up to 10 years for banks to catch up, and that much of that process will be the result of further changes in the legal status of marijuana.
What to do for Now
The best advice that dispensary owners are getting at this time is to simply go elsewhere and bypass the banks. Online merchant account providers are more flexible and are willing to provide a range of financial services for dispensary entrepreneurs. While any business that sells pharmaceuticals is considered to be a higher risk than say a shoe store, it is possible to obtain an account that will allow you to process credit and debit cards for your customers. Expanding your ability to accommodate your customers’ needs inevitably translates into increased income and a better bottom line. Credit card processing is a staple of any successful business; don’t let the banks determine who can pay you and how.