What’s changing with ACH US Direct Debit?
We've transitioned from Plaid (Instant ACH) and our previous version of ACH Direct Debit to a new version of ACH Direct Debit, also provided by Stripe. We’re also introducing automatic verification, which removes the need for account confirmation with microdeposits. This transition took place automatically on October 19th, 2023.
There’s no action your organization needs to take, but this article will explain the changes and why they’re being made.
What does this mean for organizations that use ACH or Plaid?
If you had ACH Direct Debit or Plaid enabled as payment methods, the transition to the new ACH US Direct Debit was automatic. There is nothing you or your organization needs to do.
|Before October 19th||After October 19th|
|Your organization had Plaid enabled, but not ACH Direct Debit.||ACH Direct Debit is now automatically enabled as a payment method. Only online banking verification is enabled for donors.|
|Your organization had ACH Direct Debit enabled, but not Plaid.||The new ACH Direct Debit is now automatically enabled, with only manual verification (using microdeposits) enabled as your verification method.|
|Your organization had both ACH Direct Debit and Plaid enabled.||The new ACH Direct Debit is now automatically enabled, with both online banking verification and manual verification (using microdeposits) enabled as your verification methods.|
How will recurring plans be impacted?
Any active recurring donations with completed bank account verification have already automatically transitioned to the new payment method. Those in the verification process will shift to the new ACH once they’re verified. In other words, there is nothing you need to do, and nothing will change for your recurring donors.
How will donor account verification be affected?
As before, the first time a donor donates through ACH, they have to verify that the bank account is theirs. From now on there are three ways to do this. Your organization decides which verification methods to enable.
- Online banking verification, where the donor logs in to their online banking service to confirm the payment.
- Manual verification, where the donor enters their account and routing number then gets either two microdeposits or one microdeposit with a code attached. They then confirm the microdeposit amounts or the code using a link emailed to them automatically.
- Automatic verification, where the donor enters their account and routing number but no microdeposits are sent. If the account and routing number they enter matches any existing bank account, the payment is verified.
The last two verification methods are mutually exclusive, and can’t both be simultaneously enabled.
What is automatic verification?
Automatic verification is a streamlined verification method where donors input their bank account details. Unlike traditional methods, there's no microdeposits sent to confirm that the bank account belongs to that donor. If the bank details match any existing US bank account, Stripe instantly confirms the account's validity.
How will this impact pricing?
ACH fees with Stripe are remaining the same at 0.8% per transaction, with a cap of $5.
The first time a donor uses a new bank account (e.g. for the first installment of a new recurring plan), Stripe charges a small verification fee if the donor uses Automatic verification.
|Verification method||Cost of verification|
|Online banking verification||Free until January 2024 (thereafter it’s $1.10 per account verification, billed directly by Stripe).|
|Automatic verification||$1.10 per account verification, billed directly by Stripe.|
Why are these changes being made?
To improve the convenience and reliability of ACH donations, and to align with Stripe's infrastructure improvements, we decided to remove Plaid from our platform and consolidate two payment methods into one.
What has changed in the Dashboard?
In the Insights view, all donations and subscriptions made using the previous Plaid and ACH system have been combined into a new payment method named
ACH US Direct Debit.
For donation and recurring donation listings, the “Payment method” filter for the previous Plaid and ACH methods have been merged into a single
ACH US Direct Debit filter.
If your organization has ever had at least one donation via Plaid (regardless of the donation status), those donations will be marked as Plaid donations in your exports. The Plaid filter in payment methods will still be displayed and will continue to export these donations. For all donations created under the old ACH or under the new ACH, there will be a single ACH filter. All donations made through both the old ACH and the new ACH will be exported under ACH.
Recurring plans created before October 19th 2023 that used Plaid will be categorized under the Plaid payment method.
Recurring plans created after this date will be categorized as ACH. This categorization also applies to any donations within those recurring plans made after October 19th — they'll also be shown under the ACH category.
Which verification methods are supported in the Virtual Terminal and Donor Portal?
|Checkout||All three verification options are supported in the Checkout form. The donor will see the options you enable.|
|Virtual Terminal||Your organization can choose how ACH Direct Debit donations should be confirmed in the Virtual Terminal — through manual verification or automatic verification. By default, manual verification is the method that will be enabled if you allow direct debits to be set up from the Virtual Terminal. Online banking verification is not supported in the Virtual Terminal.|
|Donor Portal||In the Donor Portal, donors will now be able to change their payment method to ACH US Direct Debit, provided the organization has online banking verification enabled for the donor flow. Automatic verification and manual verification are not currently supported in the Donor Portal.|