With most regions now cancelling events due to the risk of increasing the outbreak and guidance from the CDC on public gatherings, we will be making temporary changes to our payment policy to ensure our event directors have a reserve of funds to help with any refunds or chargebacks associated with COVID-19.
Adjusting your payment schedule for cancellations
Our standard schedule has seen many events, who have already been paid, ask to put those funds back in their account for refunds. For the time being, we are putting that disbursement schedule in the hands of our directors so they can decide when it’s the right time to get paid. In anticipation of event cancellations, we have placed a temporary hold on our standard schedule. Funds will now be held until June unless you login to set your disbursement schedule, or request funds. As before, you will continue to have full control over that schedule. To login and adjust this date and/or request funds, follow these simple instructions.
*Please keep in mind, we are not preventing you from getting your registration income, you can login and adjust this date and request a payment at any time.
Creating a Refund and Chargeback Reserve
To further ensure there are working funds, we are implementing an automated hold of 25% of event revenue until 1 week after your event, if you decide to receive funds at that time and make the date adjustments outlined above. If an event has less than that in their balance, we’ll slowly build that up, by paying you 50% of your incoming registration entries until we have 25% on hand. (As event directors ourselves, we know you are also counting on funds for event-related expenses).
We are doing this for two reasons: Making refunds easier and faster and ensuring adequate funds to cover chargebacks, both of which are covered below. Other platforms in the industry are taking similar steps to assist with this process and the associated risk.
Making refunds easier and faster
We are already working with many event directors to get funds back into their accounts so that they can refund participants. We are happy to do so but this process can take time which increases risk for chargebacks. Keeping funds in reserve will make the process easier and faster for both you and your participants.
Ensuring adequate funds to cover chargebacks
Another concern for event directors and for athleteReg is participants disputing the charge for their entry fee (a chargeback). A chargeback can be defined as when a payment made using a debit or credit card is successfully disputed and reversed either by the participant, underlying bank, or credit company. Those funds are then returned to the participant. Many banks and creditors tend to favor the buyer in these disputes even when we provide sufficient evidence of the purchase and the refund policy.
If the chargeback is lost prior to the event being paid out, we easily make an adjustment by removing the participant along with their entry fee. If the event has been paid out, we will work with the event director to get funds back into their account to cover the dispute through a direct deposit, check, or credit card. Even better is ensuring there are reserves on hand to take care of these quickly.
Over the next several weeks, we anticipate an increase in disputes. This reserve ensures events are covered.
Will this be a permanent change?
That is not our intent. We plan to modify this in the coming weeks or months when, hopefully, we can all return to normal operations! We will communicate with you if there are any changes.
Can I add more money to my refund reserve?
You can always increase your reserve if you intend to postpone or cancel your race and offer refunds. Contact us to arrange adding funds via your bank, credit card, or check.
My event is cancelled. Can you process refunds for me?
Yes! We have an easy to process refunds in bulk. If you have adequate funds in your account, just contact us.
What else can I do to accommodate my participants?
In our previous post and email to directors we advised you to hold some funds in your account to cover potential refunds and consider offering credits to a future event. This can leave customers happy and you in a stronger financial position to cover event expenses.
Are there any special accommodations or adjustments that can be made to the 25% reserve?
Please contact us if you have plans in place that warrant a change in policy.
I need the available funds in my account before the hold date you have in place.
If you have a plan to handle the postponement or cancellation of your event, or your event is not yet affected and you want funds released, that is no problem, just follow these simple instructions.
If you have any questions please feel free to contact us at Support@athleteReg.com.