Don’t worry, cardholders, and don’t get too excited, merchants. Credit card surcharging in Kansas is still banned. Kansas is one of 6 states where this is always the case. Read our Credit Card Surcharging Requirements List to discover if your state allows surcharges. We update it regularly, including changes to the states where surcharging is or is not allowed. Texas surcharging recently became lawful, for example. Even California and New York are possibly changing their surcharging laws. However, credit card surcharging in Kansas is safely locked-in.
Why is Kansas Surcharging Illegal?
Kansas Statute 16a-2-403 states that, “No seller or lessor in any sales or lease transaction… may impose a surcharge on a card holder who elects to use a credit or debit card in lieu of payment by cash, check or similar means.” It is unique that Kansas Statutes mentions a lessor and lease transactions in its surcharge law. Connecticut’s surcharge law, for example, only says that a surcharge is not acceptable for any method of payment. This Kansas specification is useful because it distinguishes that the transfer of property, or a lease, is still identified as something that can be paid for by credit or debit card. The 2010 amendment is also specific in mentioning debit cards as a restricted form of payment to be surcharged. It eliminates the assumption that only credit cards are non-surchargeable.
Alternatives to Surcharging in Kansas
Many merchants in states that allow surcharging still choose to not pass the fee on to their customers. This is because no customer wants to pay an extra fee, just for shopping with you. There are still ways of encouraging customers to not use debit and credit cards;
A unique Kansas surcharging fact is that there is no rule saying that a merchant can’t offer a discount to the cardholder for using cash. In other states where surcharging is banned, like Colorado, the law states that there is nothing wrong with offering two varying prices for one product depending on the payment method. This is a popular method of encouraging customers to avoid using a card. Since Kansas law says nothing prohibiting this method, it is up to the merchant if they want to attempt it. Keep in mind that your business could be subject to a hefty fine if you’re found in violation of Kansas surcharging laws.
If you are a merchant that leases a product monthly, you could encourage your customers to pay by ACH instead of by card. It is a method that is typically only used in B2B environments, but it is still an option.
Save Money Without Surcharging
The credit card surcharging law in Kansas doesn’t mean merchant services are off the table for your business. Plenty of low-cost merchant service providers could surprise you with their low rates. Try finding a payment processing provider with rate match capabilities. You might not even wish you could surcharge your Kansas customers.