Charging Patients a Cancellation Fee – Patient Disputing Charge

Jennifer from KIRSCHENBAUM & KIRSCHENBAUM, P.C. was asked the following question:

Thank you for yesterday’s newsletter. I am really interested in collecting no-show fees but I’m concerned about keeping cards on file and charging for no-shows. What if the patients dispute the charges? What are my risks?

Dr. C


Dr. C, thank you for the pragmatic follow-up. Unfortunately this falls outside my area, so I have asked Tom Aronica, President of Sky Bank Financial to comment. Tom has provided the following:

In recent years, the card associations have been becoming more strict regarding chargeback and dispute issues, requiring specific documentation to validate transactions. To protect against liability for disputes on no-show fees charged, the card associations recommend written approval from the customer with their acknowledgement of the fee along with an imprint of the clients credit card. Although we can fight these disputes without the imprint, it makes winning the case significantly more difficult. Also, when storing the card imprints and well as the cardholder information electronically, it is extremely important to make sure you are doing so within the guidelines of the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI-DSS).

SkyBank Financial specializes in processing for doctor’s offices and medical practitioners and provides all the forms required by the card associations as well as best practices for accepting payment cards from your clients. In addition, we have a full service dedicated chargeback resolution department which will fight chargebacks and disputes on your behalf and we offer all clients a free virtual gateway which is fully PCI Compliant where you can store customers credit card information in a secure online environment. For a more detailed explanation or a free analysis of your current processing relationship, please contact SkyBank Financial at 800-617-9980 or visit our website at

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