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Credit Card Merchant Processing Agreements – Small Business Complaints and Inquiries - Financial Regulation

Effective October 1, 2019, Credit Card Processors are prohibited from assessing or charging a fee, fine, or penalty of more than $500 if a business entity cancels a “merchant processing agreement” before the expiration of the initial term. Additionally, Credit Card Processors may not assess a fee, fine, or penalty if a business entity terminates the merchant processing agreement after the expiration of the initial term (unless the parties enter into a separate renewal agreement). They must provide a copy of the agreement, in electronic or paper form, at the time of signing and must disclose the following information in their merchant processing agreements:

  • The amount of any early termination fee, fine penalty or liquidated damages that may be assessed before the expiration of the INITIAL term.
  • The expiration and renewal date of the agreement.
  • The customer service contact information including telephone number, mailing address and email address.

This law applies only to business entities that employ less than 50 employees or that generate less than $2 million in credit card or electronic commerce transactions annually, and has no effect on merchant processing agreements entered into or renewed before October 1, 2019 (the effective date).

Submit a Complaint

The Office of Financial Regulation is authorized to investigate any complaints received and to use any of the investigative and enforcement powers granted under Title 2, Subtitle 1 of the Financial Institutions Article.

If you are a small business with a complaint about your Credit Card Processor, please contact them first to try to resolve the matter. If that is unsuccessful or if they are unresponsive, you may file a complaint with our Office.

  1. Complete the complaint form (or the formulario de denuncia ). In the section “What is your complaint about?” on page 4 of the form, check the “Other” category and type “Credit Card Processor” .
  2. Submit your complaint via email, mail, fax, or in-person.
    • Email:
      Remember to attach the complaint form and supporting documentation to your email.
    • Mail: Office of Financial Regulation
      ATTN: Consumer Services Unit
      1100 N. Eutaw Street, Suite 611
      Baltimore, MD 21201
      If you are mailing your complaint, include copies of supporting documents. Do not mail originals.
    • Facsimile (fax): 410-333-3866
      Mark your fax to the attention of the Consumer Services Unit
    • In-person: Appointments are available to hand-deliver documents or for virtual meetings with Financial Regulation staff through a video-conference kiosk at our offices. To schedule an appointment online, please visit the online scheduling system .

File a Complaint

Formulario de queja