There are four main processing options for CBD brands:
Domestic e-check solutions are available to brands of any size. This alternative payment method doesn’t rely on banks and has been largely unaffected by recent changes. While e-check percentage rates are generally lower than international processors, they’re accompanied by additional monthly charges and setup fees.
With Elavon gone, there’s only one bank transacting in CBD, but there are countless firms and brokers authorized to sell this one bank’s services. In the 60 days of panic leading up to May 15, CBD firms were preyed on by brokers hungry for application fees, willing to take your money in exchange for submitting an application you’d already submitted.
3. Offshore Credit Card Processing
Elavon extended the 45-day window to 60 days, and on May 15, Elavon officially dropped all CBD accounts. As a consultant to a CBD brand that was affected by this, I not only saw firsthand what ensued in these 60 days, but I also saw what happened on May 15, when the plug was pulled and things didn’t go according to plan.
Elavon was responsible for a rumored 90% of online CBD merchant payment processing in the United States. So, on March 14, nearly all CBD brands began scrambling for a new solution before losing their ability to accept credit card payments.
If you’re swiping credit cards on location, then you may be in luck, as there are some credit card payment terminal providers, like Naturepay and GreenBox, who are still in the game. This is what the dispensaries use. It puts the money from the swiped card into your bank account.
Anyone is able to apply to our CBD Program. Refer to the section above, Signing Up for the CBD Program, for more information.
Once you complete an application, your account will be subject to review. If approved, you can begin processing payments after the review is completed.
Transactions and Fees
While we can’t provide legal advice, or a list of allowed or unallowed terms or phrases, we built our review process on FDA and other relevant guidelines. For example, we don’t allow any claims that your CBD products may be used to cure, treat, or aid conditions such as anxiety, inflammation, depression, PTSD, ADHD, cancer, or other health conditions. For more information, we encourage you to review the FDA website and warning letters that the FDA has sent to CBD businesses regarding claims made about their products.
Square currently allows sellers in the CBD Program to accept payments for hemp and hemp-derived CBD products that have less than, or equal to, 0.3% THC in most states within the United States. If you sell CBD products, including, for example, oil, flower, seeds, lotions, topicals, wax, etc., your business is required to be in the CBD Program. These products must be produced and sold in compliance with applicable law, including, but not limited to, the 2018 Farm Bill, and relevant state laws.
I have a friend who also sells CBD. Can they also join the Program?
Square works with multiple federally regulated and licensed acquiring banks.