As more and more attorneys dis- cover the many benefits of ac- cepting credit card payments,
questions arise concerning the introduction of EMV readers and the
upcoming liability shift in October
2015. What is EMV? Will this policy
change affect my firm? How do I
keep my firm and clients secure?
What is EMV?
EMV (Europay–MasterCard–Visa) or
“pin and chip” cards have seen
widespread usage since 1992 when
their popularity surged in Europe.
Embedded with a unique electronic
chip, highly secure EMV credit cards
effectively counter the threat of
counterfeiting. EMV technology has
been largely focused on mid-size to
large retailers, but is making headlines due to the upcoming liability
shift on card present or “swipe”
According to Visa, as of October
How will this affect my firm?
1st, 2015, the liability for fraudulent
transactions will officially belong
“to the party that is the cause of a
chip transaction not occurring, and
will be held financially liable for
the resulting card present counter-
feit fraud losses.” However, respon-
sibility for fraud on your merchant
account is nothing new. Most agree-
ments already hold your business
responsible for chargebacks, fraud,
and bank fees on any transaction
processed through your merchant
The good news is, since most law
firms do not handle transactions in
a “retail” situation, or use “point
of sale” terminal systems, EMV processing is not a large factor in how
you run your practice. In addition,
law firms have a very low risk of
accepting counterfeit credit cards.
As a law firm, you have an advantage
over traditional retailers because you
know the identity of your clients,
which drastically reduces the risk of
accepting a counterfeit credit card.
However, it is still important to maintain PCI Compliance and protect client and card holder information.
What is PCI Compliance?
PCI (Payment Card Industry) Compliance is a set of guidelines for protecting credit card data. Each year,
you are required to complete a Self-Assessment Questionnaire (SAQ) as
a way to evaluate the security in
your office. LawPay makes this part
easy. Using our free online program,
PCI Central, attorneys can achieve
PCI Compliance and accept credit
cards with confidence.
The most effective way to main-
tain PCI compliance is to eliminate
the need to see, collect, or store any
credit card data from clients. If no
one in your office touches, records,
or handles a client credit card, or the
card number, then the risk for card
fraud is almost eliminated.
For example, using a credit card
processing service such as LawPay
provides a secure web-based system
that securely encrypts the credit
card and eliminates the need to han-
dle data directly. LawPay also offers
the ability to add secure payment
links to your website, or send elec-
tronic invoices directly to clients.
These methods also eliminate the
need for traditional credit card ma-
chines, further reducing your risk.
As a best practice, avoid the storage
of credit card information and sim-
ply allow your clients to enter their
payment information directly with
The LawPay solution is designed to
correctly separate earned and unearned fees to avoid commingling
funds when accepting credit card
payments. More importantly, LawPay contractually protects your client funds by restricting the ability of
any third-party from debiting monies from a Trust or IOLTA account.
LawPay works in partnership with
over 90 bar associations across the
country, including the American Bar
Association, to ensure our program
is up-to-date and in compliance.
The technology for preventing credit card fraud is
What does it mean for your law firm?
AMY PORTER, CEO AFFINIPAY/LAWPAY
The LawPay Program is a custom payment solution designed for
attorneys. LawPay complies with ABA and state requirements for
managing client funds.
Members of the State Bar of Arizona save up to 20–25% off
standard credit card fees. To learn more, call 866-376-0950 or
go to www.lawpay.com/azbar.
How to Keep Credit Card
Payments Secure for Law Firms