If you’ve made a trip to the tax collector’s office or paid a utility bill recently, you were likely charged a small amount extra if you used a credit card. Under Florida law, it historically has been illegal to charge an extra fee if a customer wants to pay with a credit card unless the entity charging the fee is a government agency or public utility service. However, be prepared to see these fees at other places you swipe your credit card soon-including your attorney’s office. Learn more about this change from Anton Castro Law firm in Tampa, FL.
It’s common practice to pass on credit card fees, and until recently attorneys couldn’t do it. But times have changed. Now, under a new statute that government agencies to allow payment with credit cards and charge the fees that go along with it. Under this section, “state agencies, the judicial branch and units of local government” all can charge a convenience fee for using a credit card, if the fee isn’t more than what’s charged by the third-party payment processor the agency contracts with.
We are pleased to let you know at Anton Castro Law we have chosen not to pass credit card fees on to clients at our Tampa Bay law firm.
Attorneys Charging Credit Card Fees
Bar members may pass along banking fees and other related expenses when accepting credit card payments from clients. That’s one of several Florida Bar rule amendments, effective March 5, which was recently approved by the state Supreme Court.
On the credit card charge, the court approved adding language to Rule 4-1.5(h), which prohibits charging clients a higher fee for using a credit card. The new verbiage says, “Lawyers may charge clients the actual charge the credit plan imposes on the lawyer for the client’s transaction.”
While the rule change allows for more freedom in your preferred payment method, we feel that these additional fees are best kept by our clients. and we are proud to have opted to not to pass on this credit card fees to our clients.
Choosing a Tampa Attorney
When it comes to selecting an attorney for your family, personal injury, or divorce case, you need to feel comfortable with your attorney and their ethical choices. This can be as simple as the additional fees they choose to charge you or not for your representation. Remember, when you want a lawyer to represent your best interests while not charging you additional fees, you need to contact Anton Castro Law in Tampa.