How to Avoid “Frozen” Merchant Accounts

The pandemic has amplified the significance of online businesses. It has also made owning a high-risk business much more challenging.

High-risk companies are subject to terminations, freezes and holds more often than a medium- or low-risk company. Often a business’s payment processing can be impacted because a processor provides a merchant account without completely vetting the business prior to approval. Later on discovers it is a high-risk merchant.

This takes place when payment service providers use “auto approve” underwriting procedures. In this process certain information is neglected. The account is then shut off for breaking terms, even if the merchant did not misrepresent their business. The main offenders of using this technique are Stripe, PayPal and Square.

Unexpected terminations and freezes can also be brought on by fraud. The purposeful use of deception to cause loss or disadvantage to a third party. This might include habits such as the abuse of payment card details, intentionally not supplying items and services and other unsavoury activities.

The obstacles dealing with high-risk merchants have actually only been amplified by COVID-19. This is because the crisis presents an opportunity for scammers, who are capitalizing on the increase in online deals as well as the change in company procedures as business’ operations move to working remotely.

High Risk Merchants

High-risk merchants are more most likely to receive a hold or freeze. There are a couple of easy actions every organization can take to minimize their threats. Here are 4 suggestions every high-risk merchant need to bear in mind:

Reduce threat through chargeback mitigation. Chargeback mitigation is among the very best methods to prevent a freeze or hold. This can take the form of offering client support for refunds and concerns or releasing chargeback mitigation tools to keep your merchant account safe.

Secure consumer data. Merchants need to guarantee their customers information is safe. You attain this by maintaining Payment Card Industry compliance. PCI compliance refers to the operational and technical standards. It guarantees that companies must follow protect and secure charge card information.

Be completely transparent during the underwriting process. It is easier to be sincere and permit the processor to make a decision based upon real information than to lie about it. That will guarantee that you will be shut off is you get caught. Merchants must not introduce, include, or sell products on their website that were not approved by an underwriter during the onboarding process.


Follow regional laws and ordinances. It is very important to keep up to date on the most recent guidelines and regulations and not run the risk of offering prohibited items. As an example, in the U.S. under federal law, CBD items which contain less than 0.3% of THC are legal in all 50 states. If a high-risk business operates in an industry managed by vague language, the payment partners will eventually discover compliance issues and the future of the company could be at risk.

If your processor does not comprehend the particular requirements of high-risk services dealing with them could be an abrupt monetary catastrophe if your account is shut down without warning.

How to Avoid Frozen Merchant Accounts

Other articles that you may find helpful in your search are listed below:

Stripe Closed My Merchant Account

Stripe Terminated My Merchant Account Without Notice

What is the TMF and MATCH List, and How to Get Removed From It

Why Payment Processors Suspend Their High Risk Merchants