High Risk Merchant Account

We are rated #1 for providing High Risk Merchant Account to multi-verticals

We are rated #1 for the provision of High Risk Merchant Accounts.
iPayTotal caters to the needs of high-risk businesses, helping them boost sales and generate revenues using specialized high-risk merchant account.

Generally, a high-risk merchant account is a business or an industry that is famous for chargebacks and fraud, borders on the legitimateness or is viewed as risky by affiliation. But there is no need to worry. We will dive into the details of what all that implies in no time, so continue reading. Businesses with higher than normal chargeback rates (such as travel agencies), businesses with age-restricted items (like tobacco sales) and other businesses that are perfectly legitimate and legal. Individual businesses can also be considered higher risk even if they aren’t in overall high-risk industry.Not all high-risk businesses are considered high risk because of their industry. In addition to particular industries, individual businesses may be considered high risk for factors including poor personal credit; inclusion on the Terminated Merchant File (TMF or MATCH list) for processing misconduct, non-payment, or fraud; high dollar value transactions with no business history; high dollar custom products; large number of international transactions.

Businesses are also treated differently depending on the level of financial risk they present to their processor. All processors will cautiously judge your business to decide if you fall into the “high-risk” category.If for reasons unknown, your business is categorized under high-risk one, the results can be serious. Most of the processors will basically decline to approve you for a merchant account, while others will charge you undoubtedly higher rates and fees than you would some way or another need to pay.Much like applying for a loan, when a business owner applies for a merchant account, there is an underwriting process the account provider (or loan provider) will go through to estimate the risk of adding your account to their portfolio.

What is a high-risk business?

Is your Business Hard To Place? – No Problem

Not all businesses are created equal especially when it comes to banks. It’s important to work with a merchant services company that understands your business type. We have aligned ourselves with banks that are comfortable with hard to place merchants. Tired of getting rejected because of your business type? That stops here.

  • Businesses vulnerable to frequent Chargebacks
  • Blacklisted Companies
  • Industries with Poor Reputations
  • Businesses vulnerable to Fraud
  • New Businesses
  • Companies that primarily accept card-not-present transactions
  • Businesses with Recurring Billing Cycles

Some of the points taken into consideration when applying for a merchant account are:

  • Your personal credit history
  • Company financials
  • Number of years in business
  • Merchant account history such as if you ever had a merchant account before. If so, do you have a history of chargebacks and have you been blacklisted on the MATCH list or Terminated Merchant File (TMF).

Our underwriters and business consultants have broad experience with all business models considered “high risk” by traditional banks. Leverage our staff today, and let us service your credit card processing needs.

List of industries considered High Risk

Tobacco and electronic cigarettes
Drugs and drug products (including prescriptions)
Airline, travel, tourism and lodging
Debt management and collection agencies
Payday loans
Foreign exchange (Forex)
Pyramid selling
Dating and escort services
Adult entertainment
Timeshares and holiday clubs
Tech support
Casinos, gambling or gaming
Check cashing services
Cigarettes, e-cigarettes, or vape retailers
Collection agencies
Coupons or rewards-points programs
Credit protection, counseling, or debt repair services

If you’re deemed as a high-risk business, your account provider will likely require you to keep a reserve. There are three types of reserve accounts you can expect from MSPs, and they are:


Rolling Reserve. A rolling reserve is a risk management strategy the acquiring bank uses to protect themselves from potential fraud, chargebacks, or other incidents where the acquirer may lose money. Think of it as a buffer or an insurance policy on the high-risk nature of your business. Based on the terms of your merchant agreement, the payment provider will withhold a percentage of your daily revenue for a specified term, and then gradually release the funds.


Up-Front Reserve. If you’re a new business or have other less than ideal qualifying factors, some MSPs will require starting with an up-front reserve. Based on expected transaction volume, an up-front reserve is the amount of money that must be placed in escrow at the start of the merchant agreement — or allow the MSP to withhold 100 percent of credit card funds until the reserve balance is met.


Capped or Fixed Reserve. A fixed reserve is when the acquirer withholds a percentage of every transaction until the reserve reaches the cap agreed upon in the merchant agreement. Unlike a rolling reserve where the acquirer takes a portion of every sale indefinitely, in this model, once the cap is reached the acquirer will not take any additional funds. However, if the MSP needs to withdraw from the reserve for any reason, the withholding percentage will kick in again until the cap balance is replenished.

What happens if you are labeled a High-Risk merchant?

High-risk merchants don’t qualify for traditional processing agreements. They’re stuck working with acquirers and processors who offer high-risk merchant services and are willing to accept liability for the increased risk associated with these businesses (known as a high-risk payments processor). As you might imagine, the “high risk” service comes with a higher price tag.


First and foremost, if you want to accept credit cards as a form of payment, there is going to be a cost associated with doing so. The major card networks (Visa, Mastercard, Discover, and American Express) charge interchange fees to use their network and the Merchant Service Providers (MSPs) charge processing fees to connect the card issuing bank to the acquiring bank via payment processors like First Data or TSYS.


Since the merchant account provider and the processor assume the majority of the risk during a transaction, they charge fees for their services on top of the interchange fees that the card networks charge. As any smart business that takes on risk would do, these companies try to minimize risk by imposing higher premiums on merchant accounts that are deemed risky.Typically, a high-risk merchant account is a business or an industry that is notorious for chargebacks and fraud, borders on the legality or is considered risky by association.

We at iPayTotal Ltd. specialize in High-Risk Merchant Account, High-Risk ACH processing, and High-Risk merchant services. We approve practically every business type, even if you have been turned down for payment processing. With more than a decade of experience, our team is here to help. Even if you have been shut down by your current processor, we have a high-risk merchant account solution for your particular situation. We’re available to answer any questions and provide ongoing continued support for our valued customers.


iPayToTal understands the one of a kind needs of the different high risk related businesses and has built up 40+ acquiring banking connections to end up a specialist in providing high-risk merchant accounts set up and accepting on the online payments.