Getting A Paraphernalia Merchant Account
Paraphernalia is a general term that is commonly used for the equipment, devices, or furnishings used for a specific activity. But it is more commonly used in relation to smoking accessories, e.g. bongs, rolling machines, ash trays, grinders, lighters, glass pipes, etc. Because of the products’ link with the CBD merchant account and hemp industry, banks classify paraphernalia merchants as high risk. As a result, it is difficult to obtain a paraphernalia merchant account in order to process credit and debit card payments.
Why Are Paraphernalia Companies Considered High Risk?
Paraphernalia companies fall into the high-risk category because of the inherent nature of the products that they sell. Specifically, the ever-increasing popularity of electronic cigarettes and vapes create a top priority for FDA. Being tobacco-related products, the Food & Drug Administration regulates the sales, use, and safety protocols of e-cigarettes and vape shops.
Another reason why paraphernalia companies get rejected for merchant accounts is that they often sell their products online which presents difficulty in authenticating the age of the buyer. According to federal law, consumers must be over the age of 18 if they are to buy and consume paraphernalia products. However, selling online makes it harder for paraphernalia merchants to make sure that the buyer is indeed of the right age as they claim to be.
How to Get a Paraphernalia Merchant Account?
Selling paraphernalia products will flag your business as high risk. As a result, you won’t be able to obtain a merchant account from banks and traditional payment processors, which is very similar to head shop merchant accounts. Fortunately, there is another reliable option available: high risk merchant account. There are high risk payment processors that are willing to work with businesses just like yours. All you need to do is find such a merchant account provider and apply for a high-risk paraphernalia merchant account.
The method to apply for a high-risk merchant account may vary from one payment processor to another. Generally, it involves the following steps:
- Contact the high-risk merchant processor via email or call. They will help you prepare your merchant account application, explain the documentation required, provide guidance regarding the approval process, and answer any inquiries.
- Next, fill out the application form and submit the required documentation. Then wait for the response of the payment processor. If your account is approved, you will be notified via email and the necessary credentials will also be provided.
What Documents Required to for a High-Risk Merchant Account Application?
It is extremely important to provide all the required documents in a timely manner during the application process. This will really accelerate the approval of your high-risk paraphernalia merchant account. So, make sure to keep the following key documents/details ready:
1) Valid Photo ID (Citizen ID card, password, driver’s license, etc.).
2) Business information (contact information, phone number, physical address, and website address).
4) History of credit card processing transactions or previous merchant account statements.
5) Three months of recent bank account statements.
6) Business license in the area where your business is registered.
As you may have realized after being rejected by Square, Stripe, or PayPal, traditional payment processors don’t take the risk of accepting high-risk merchants like paraphernalia companies. The good news is, reliable high-risk merchant account providers exist. By working with one, you can get a paraphernalia merchant account and start accepting credit/debit card payments without hassles.
Merchant Services For Paraphernalia Websites
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About The Author
Mark Sands, co-founder of High Risk Merchant Account LLC, an authoritative expert in the high-risk merchant account space. Mark has decades of experience in the payment industry & enjoys writing on entrepreneurial related topics.