Credit Card Fee FAQ’s

Important Notice: A service fee will be charged for Credit/Debit Card Payments of student account bills beginning on our around June 30, 2017 (date is approximate).

Westfield State is happy to provide students a range of options for paying educational expenses. However, those choosing to pay by credit or debit card for the educational expenses billed through Student Accounts or the Division of Graduate and Continuing Education will begin paying a 2.5 percent service fee, effective on or around June 30, 2017.

Why do I have to pay a 2.5% service fee to pay with a credit card and how it is determined?

Credit and debit card payments are processed by CORE Business Technologies (CORE). CORE provides third-party transaction processing services, operating under an agreement with Westfield State University to process credit and debit card payments on students’ behalf. You will be charged a 2.5% service fee for processing your payment. The service fee amount is calculated based on 2.5% of your total payment amount. The percentage has been determined by CORE and covers the transaction fees assessed by credit card companies.

The service fee is not assessed by Westfield State University, nor does the university receive any part of the service fee.

The 2.5% service fee is added to your payment and will appear as a separate item on your credit card statement. It will not appear on the tuition and fee bill. The service fee is nonrefundable, even if the payment to which it relates is cancelled, refunded, credited or charged back. By using this service you agree to pay the service fee.

Why is the fee now being assessed for credit and debit card payments?

Westfield State University is committed to providing students a range of options for paying educational expenses. However, providing complimentary credit or debit card payment services has become prohibitively expensive because of the processing fees assessed by the credit card companies and financial institutions. The expense, approximately $450,000, has been absorbed by the University; however, this drastically reduces funds available for other student needs. Westfield State will continue to absorb the minor fees associated with e-check transactions.

Is there any way I can avoid paying a service fee?

Yes, select e-check when paying online to pay from your checking account. You can also avoid paying a service fee by paying with cash, check, money order or bank check at the Student Accounts window or by mailing such payments to the Student Accounts Office (do not mail cash). Note: DGCE does not accept cash payments over $10.

Is charging a service fee legal?  Do other universities charge a fee for credit card transactions?

Yes to both. Service fees can be charged for processing credit and debit card transactions for student account payments. Westfield State does not charge or receive this fee. CORE Business Technologies charges this fee to cover the cost of transaction fees assessed by credit card companies. Other universities across the country (including other Massachusetts state universities) enlist third party processing companies that charge service fees for credit card transactions.

Is the service fee refundable?

No, the 2.5% service fee is non-refundable even if the payment to which it relates is canceled, refunded, credited or charged back. Service fees must be disputed directly with your credit card company.

Why can’t I see the service fee on my student account?

The service fee is assessed by CORE, our payment processor, not WSU so it does not appear on your student account.  The service fee will also appear as a separate charge on your credit card statement.

To which charges will this fee apply? 

Basically, the fee will be applied to all payments via credit card made to satisfy your student account balance. This includes tuition and fees, room and board and various other fees that may be posted to your account (i.e. late payment fee, late registration fee, etc.). You will not be charged a service fee on select payments (Student ID’s, Room Reservation Deposits and Owl Bucks added at the Campus Card Office, for example).