SCCU Merchant Services Frequently Asked Questions

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Founded in 2010, Payfirma is a Canadian payments company that allows members to accept credit and debit card payments, as well as gain the data and insight to run smarter, more successful businesses – all from one convenient platform. Known for our innovative payment technology, Payfirma was the winner of the Digital Finance Institute’s Fintech of the Year award in 2015. We are dedicated to quality and reliable service with 24/7 support, as well as the industry’s most comprehensive security with full PCI compliance for your members. Our underwriting bank is First Data, the leading acquirer in Canada.
First Data is the acquirer that underwrites the merchant accounts. An acquirer is a type of bank that takes on the risk of card processing, as well as solicits, underwrites, and maintains the merchant account. Your members will see First Data’s logo on their monthly statements, along with Payfirma’s.
Payment processing is the automated processing of electronic payment transactions between members and their customers. For a more comprehensive explainer on payment processing, read our eBook Payment Processing 101. Payfirma provides merchant services (payment tools and merchant accounts), which enable members to process payments. There are a lot of parties involved in credit and debit card processing, and payment companies like Payfirma allow members to accept credit cards from multiple brands, card issuers, and networks in a single, efficient way.
Payfirma is a merchant account provider. This means that we set your members up with their own dedicated merchant account. A merchant account is a type of bank account that is required to be able to accept payments. To compare, aggregators (another type of payment processor) do not provide members with dedicated merchant accounts. Instead, they bundle members together with other small businesses and allow them to accept payment using a joint account. This is the processing model for payment companies such as Square and Stripe.

Having a dedicated merchant account does make a significant difference. As a merchant account provider, Payfirma has the ability to tailor pricing plans for your members based on their individual business and processing volume, whereas aggregators typically use flat rates that become costly the more you process. Additionally, Payfirma offers a wide range of payment tools that let your members accept payments any way they want to do business; mobile phones or tablets, on your website, via traditional terminals, or using recurring billing or invoicing options. Point solutions like aggregators typically specialize in one channel (online payments for Stripe and mobile payments for Square). There are many more benefits to having a dedicated merchant account; for an in-depth comparison, check out this article.

Payfirma differentiates itself from other payment processors who also offer dedicated merchants accounts (i.e. Moneris, Chase, and Global Payments) with:

  • their award-winning member support
  • a vast variety of payment processing tools that enable your members to truly accept payments any way they want to do business
  • a white label solution that integrates your brand power for a more cohesive experience
  • a payments platform that acts as a central hub for your members’ business, allowing them to accept payments, manage employees, and analyze payment data
No, they do not ever have to worry about PCI compliance. Every transaction processed is tokenized, encrypted, and protected. For further information on PCI compliance, check out this article.
The free Payfirma app is available for download in the App Store for Apple users and Google Play for Android users.
Through this partnership, Payfirma is able to offer SCCU member preferred pricing. Once you submit a referral to Payfirma, a Payment Advisor will contact your member to chat about their business needs and customize pricing based on the member's unique needs and processing volume.
Follow these three steps to submit a referral:

1. Go to payfirma.com/engage/sccu-referral
2. Fill out the form with the details of your member referral.
3. Click submit!

Once you click submit, you’ll get an email notification of your submission as well as additional notifications each time your referral makes it to the next stage.
There are several ways to check the status of a referral:

1. When you submit the referral, you will receive an email with the contact details of the Payment Advisor that is assigned to your member. You can call or email them anytime.
2. At the end of each week, you will receive an email that lists your open referrals with their account statuses.
3. When your member’s account goes live, you will receive an email notification.
After you submit the referral, your member should expect to hear from us within one business day.
Our goal is to have your members processing within 1-2 business days once their application has been completed, signed, and submitted to First Data for review.
Funding occurs Monday-Friday. When members process during a weekday, they will generally see deposits in their account 1-2 business days later. When members process on the weekend, they should expect to see their funds deposited on Monday, as long as they batch their terminals before 7 pm PST on Sunday.
If your members need technical assistance, the fastest way for them to get help is by calling our dedicated SCCU support line for priority service: +1.877.722.8123. Next, they can email [email protected]. They also have our self-service Support Centre available at their disposal.
During regular business hours, you can contact Payfirma directly by calling +1.877.722.8123. You can also email:
While there is no designated contact assigned to each SCCU branch, we have dedicated SCCU phone lines and emails. Our sales and support teams are cross-trained in priority handling of calls and emails that come through the SCCU channels.
We aim to respond to your email and voicemail inquiries within four hours.
For more information visit us at payfirma.com