Match List FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions
about Mastercard MATCH List

Theodore F. Monroe is a Los Angeles-based attorney who has helped many merchants get off the MATCH List. In 2020, he had a 100% success rate getting his clients off the MATCH List. In this video series, Mr. Monroe answers the most frequently asked questions about Mastercard’s MATCH List. The video transcription for each answer appears below the video.

What is the MATCH List?

The MATCH List is a list maintained by MasterCard for itself, the other brands, the other payment companies, and credit card, processors. It is a list that contains those merchants that these members believe pose a high risk for problems in the future. They may be problems related to high chargebacks, problems related to data-breach, or something else. And the list is also called, the “Member Alert To Control High-Risk Merchants”, and once a merchant is on that list it’s going to be very hard to get credit card processing into the future.

How did I get on the MATCH List?

One of the questions I get a great deal is: How did I get onto the MATCH List? A merchant can be added to the MATCH List in several ways. First, your credit card processor can place you on the MATCH List when it terminates you. It can be for a specific set of reasons such as high chargebacks, a data breach, identity theft, excessive fraud. Also, MasterCard can place you on the MATCH
List for violation of brand standards.

Who put me on the MATCH List?

One of the questions I get a lot is: Who put me on the MATCH List? Generally, it’s your credit card processor that puts you on the MATCH List. Also, it could be Visa and Mastercard putting you on there, but usually, it’s your own credit card processor. Now sometimes it can be another credit card processor mistakingly putting you on the MATCH List; for instance for something like identity theft. An example would be, I had a merchant, Habitat For Humanity, a fine merchant and a credit card processor allowed some criminals to use Habitat For Humanity’s I.D. to process credit cards, and then when they found out what was going on they put Habitat For Humanity on the MATCH List which was pretty incredible.

What is TMF?

The TMF List is a terminated merchant file; it’s a term used by Visa. Today, the TMF List has been encompassed by the MATCH list that is maintained by Mastercard. So, if you hear the term TMF List or MATCH List, they’re the same.

How long will I be on the MATCH List?

One question clients have is: How long will I be on the MATCH List? Generally, the answer is five years. The start date for that is the date that the processor terminated your account. Five years after that; Mastercard will generally take you off the MATCH List.

How do I get off the MATCH List?

Merchants ask me: How do I get off the MATCH List? I tell them it’s not going to be easy; you can’t do it yourself, you can’t call Mastercard, you can’t call/write your processor and convince them to take you off. You need to call an attorney, like myself, who has developed a methodology on getting people off the MATCH List.

How does being on MATCH affect my business?

Clients are very concerned about how being on the MATCH List will affect their business. Generally, I tell them that, they’re going to have a very hard time getting credit card processing in the future. Their current merchant accounts, even by other processors, will likely be terminated in the coming months as those processors figure out that the merchant is on the MATCH List. There are a few processors out there that will take merchants on the MATCH List, but they’re very few and far between and they charge very hefty rates. If you are on the MATCH List you should assume that you will have a very hard time getting credit card processing unless you get off the List.

Can you get me off the MATCH List?

We have had a great track record getting people off the MATCH List. I’m not aware of any other law firm that has gotten more people off the MATCH List than ours. Last year we got a hundred percent of the people, who came to us, off the MATCH List. Now your situation may vary, but call us, we’d like to talk to you we’d like to help.