Calgary entrepreneur still paying to cancel 'cheaper' credit service
Canadian Federation of Independent Business director says the industry is like the Wild West
A Calgary business that switched to a "cheaper" debit and credit card processing plan is still paying the price more than two years later.
Carol Card, the owner of Son of the Pharaoh on 17th Avenue, thought she dealt with the problem back in March when CBC News first told her story.
"This would never happen to Walmart. This would never happen to Hudson Bay," she told CBC News at the time. "It only happens to small businesses like us."
But Card says she is still getting threatening calls and letters, months after she thought she had fixed the problem.
"Two things can happen — they're going to wreck my credit rating or they’re going to take me to court," she told CBC News on Thursday.
Card signed a contract with a company promising cheaper rates for credit and debit card processing.
She says the service was bad and rates more than doubled.
In order to cancel her account, she's had to deal with three separate companies. Card says she has already paid a cancellation fee of $1,000.
"They want another $2,074.58," she said.
Visa and Mastercard often contract out payment services to smaller companies.
Richard Truscott of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business says it received more than 1,800 calls about this issue last year.
"Unfortunately this industry is a bit like the Wild West," he said. "There are some players that are reputable and there are some players that are less than reputable."
He says if the industry doesn’t change, it may be up to the federal government to step in.
"It's a drastic measure, but that might be our only hope," said Card.
CBC News contacted the Montreal-based payment processing company about Card's concerns.
A company spokesperson says the Calgary business woman must pay a termination fee for ending her contract early.