Boise, ID asked in Consumer Law for Idaho

Q: Can a collection agency legally charge a $16 convenience fee? Do I have a legal leg to stand on/ a possible case?

I'm trying to help my wife pay off some debts. We tracked down the collection agency holding a $307 debt. When we tried to pay online it stated that a $16 convenience fee would be charged for debit/credit card transactions. Its free to give them a bank routing & checking account # which I am uncomfortable doing. I looked into the legality of charging convenience fees & found some interesting facts. In New York a debtor sued a collection agency over a $5 convenience fee & won. In my research it seemed to depend on state laws. I looked up the Minnesota State law (where the agency is) and found this: In statute 16A.626 subsection (d) it states "Agencies that accept [credit/debit cards], ...may impose a convenience fee to be added to each transaction... The total amount of such convenience fee must be equal to the transaction fee charged by a processing contractor for such credit services..." It seems that this agency is charging extra on the transaction fee & thus in violation of the law

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1 Lawyer Answer
Kevin M Rogers
Kevin M Rogers
  • Boise, ID
  • Licensed in Idaho

A: You may be absolutely correct. I would simply show this to the collection prople and see if they will adjust their fee. If not then you have a law suit to file, if its worth $16 to you?

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