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Q: What is a Recurring Bill Payment?

A: Recurring Bill Payment is an arrangement where you can pre-authorize a merchant to automatically charge your MasterCard card account on a recurring basis. Payments may be made monthly, quarterly, annually, etc. — depending on what you and the merchant agree upon. The pre-authorized payment can be a fixed dollar amount, or it can fluctuate like your phone bill, depending on the terms of the agreement. And, you can stop Recurring Bill Payments by contacting your associated merchant or use this payment method indefinitely.

Q: How do I set up Recurring Bill Payment?

A: Simply contact your current service provider and request that you pay with your MasterCard card. A great place to start is the MasterCard Biller Directory, which includes many companies that MasterCard cardholders pay regularly. If your biller is not listed, look for its customer service number on your bill or visit its Web site directly.

Q: What are the benefits of Recurring Bill Payment?

A: Because bills are automatically charged to your MasterCard card account, it's much faster than writing cheques. Charges will appear on your monthly MasterCard statement, so it's an easy and efficient way to keep track of your expenses. And because it's recurring, you won't have to worry about missed payments or late fees. Plus, depending upon the MasterCard card you elect to use, you may be able to earn rewards.

Q: Which MasterCard cards can I use?

A: You can use any MasterCard card — as long as it has the MasterCard logo and your account is in good standing with your issuing institution.

Q: What information will the merchant request?

A: Generally, the merchant will need your account number from the front of your MasterCard card. They will also need the expiration date, the dollar amount they are authorized to automatically charge, and the specific date you wish to be charged each month. Note: Not every merchant will allow you to choose this date, but many will. Some merchants may require additional information or supporting documents, such as your signature.

Q: Will my Recurring Bill Payment begin as soon as I contact my billing merchants?

A: Depending on the frequency with which you pay the merchant, and how quickly they are able to change your billing details, your Recurring Bill Payments may not begin immediately. You should verify the expected lag time with the merchant and, to avoid late fees and penalties, ensure that Recurring Bill Payments to your MasterCard card have begun before you stop paying your bills in your usual manner.

Q: Do I have to pay an extra fee for Recurring Bill Payments?

A: MasterCard does not charge a fee for this convenience and most merchants do not charge a fee either, but you will have to contact each merchant to determine if there are any fees or restrictions associated with participating in their Recurring Payment program.

Q: What if I pay my MasterCard bill late?

A: Your recurring payment to your merchant should still be made, even if you pay your MasterCard bill late. However, you will need to refer to your cardholder agreement with your MasterCard card issuer to determine how your issuer will handle new charges if you are delinquent in your payments. Please note that your issuer might apply interest charges for any late payments in accordance with the terms of your cardholder agreement.

Q: How often can I make payments, and when do bills get paid?

A: Each merchant has its own procedure for Recurring Bill Payment. You will need to clarify these procedures with the merchant when you initiate your Recurring Bill Payment relationship.

Q: What if I want to stop a Recurring Bill Payment?

A: Just contact the merchant with whom you've set up the Recurring Bill Payment, and then simply follow their procedures to cancel or change the method of payment.

Q: What if my MasterCard is new/changed or lost/stolen?

A: If your MasterCard card is lost or stolen, you should immediately report the problem to your card issuer. Upon receiving a new card, you must contact each merchant/service provider with whom you have a Recurring Bill Payment relationship to update your information. Timely updating of your new information hopefully will preclude any interruption in your service.

Q: Will I receive a bill for my records after I have been charged?

A: Yes, most companies continue to mail a statement indicating the total amount they will charge to your MasterCard card. However, some merchants may allow you to elect to receive an online statement — via the Internet — or no statement at all. At the time you initiate a Recurring Bill Payment relationship, you should determine how the merchant will send you statements. Also, your MasterCard card monthly statement will provide you with a convenient, thorough record of charges to your MasterCard card account.

Q: Is there a limit to the number of Recurring Bill Payments I can have on a card?

A: No, but you may be limited in making overall charges to your MasterCard account if doing so would cause you to exceed your credit limit.

Q: Are there any payments that are prohibited from being paid electronically?

A: Some companies and government agencies may not accept recurring payments.

Q: What are some examples of service providers that accept Recurring Bill Payment by MasterCard?

A: Telephone and cellular companies, cable providers, health clubs, insurance companies, utilities, Internet service providers, home security companies, etc.

Click here to find merchants you do business with in the MasterCard Biller Directory. If your biller is not listed, look for its customer service number on your bill or visit its Web site directly.

Q: Do the companies/service providers I use accept MasterCard for Recurring Bill Payment?

A: You'll need to check with each merchant that you're interested in setting up a recurring payment plan with to determine whether they accept MasterCard as a form of recurring payment. Please click here to search for specific company/service provider names. If your biller is not listed please contact them directly to inquire about MasterCard Recurring Bill Payments.

Q: What if my billing merchant does not accept MasterCard as a form of Recurring Bill Payment?

A: MasterCard is accepted at more than 24 million locations worldwide. Even so, not every merchant offers their customers Recurring Bill Payments using MasterCard cards. Because each company makes its own payment option decisions, we encourage you to request that your merchant/service provider consider offering this convenience to you.

In addition, you can let us know of the merchant that you'd like to see accept MasterCard as a form of payment. Submit this information via email to:

Unfortunately we cannot respond to every message, but we will ensure that suggestions submitted are given full consideration.

Q: Am I liable for any incorrect charges a merchant makes?

A: As a MasterCard cardholder, you are not responsible for unauthorized purchases charged to your account. Learn more about our Zero Liability* coverage. Exceptions apply.

Generally, if there is an error in billing, simply contact the merchant to resolve the issue. You should also be familiar with any procedures required by your MasterCard card issuer concerning this type of situation. This will help you to easily dispute an incorrect charge and protect yourself under applicable law.

*Conditions and exceptions apply. For further details, see Zero Liability**

Q: Who is responsible if a payment arrives after its due date?

A: The merchant will charge your MasterCard card at a predetermined time, which will be stated in your Recurring Bill Payment program agreement with the merchant. You should schedule your payment at least two days in advance of the due date. However, to be safe, you can check with your card issuer to determine liability due to late payment.

*Signature or PIN is not required for MasterCard contactless transactions of CAD $100 or less.

**If you're a MasterCard® credit card cardholder, you'll receive the benefit of Zero Liability in the event of the unauthorized use of your Canadian-issued MasterCard card. Zero Liability is provided under the following conditions:

Zero Liability does not apply to MasterCard cards issued: to an entity other than a natural person; primarily for business, commercial, or agricultural purposes; outside of Canada.