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Accurate, verifiable residual analysis and recovery

Are your monthly residual payments correct? If you suspect you're being underpaid, can you prove it? And, if you manage to remedy a problem, can you prevent it from recurring? If you don't know, you're not alone.

Residuals are based on thousands of transactions in numerous merchant locations, and on provisions in individual ISO and merchant level salesperson (MLS) agreements. Some large ISOs have staff trained to monitor residual reports for accuracy. But smaller ISOs and MLSs typically have no such resource.

A path to clarity

Enter Residual Sheriff LLC, a new venture headed by Mark Dunn, President of Field Guide Enterprises LLC, a widely respected consulting and training company known throughout the industry for timely, informative educational seminars presented in conjunction with key industry tradeshows throughout the year.

The idea for Residual Sheriff came to Dunn after he was asked to analyze transactions involved in a dispute headed for arbitration. A major accounting firm had spent six months on the residual trail, trying and failing to determine what had occurred and why. Dunn pulled the data into a cohesive report in four weeks.

"The picture that emerged once I connected the dots was that there's a significant problem with accuracy in residual reports, and many ISOs don't have the expertise, time or patience to sort through what the problems are," Dunn said.

No bad guys

Dunn noted that despite the company's catchy name, Residual Sheriff is not a law enforcement agency. "I think everybody wants to pay correctly, so I'm not looking for any bad guys in this," he said. "We don't affix blame; we fix problems."

Many errors are inadvertent. "Very often the process of updating fees is imprecise," Dunn said. "So if the processor goes through and updates all clients, sometimes all of the individual terms of a unique agreement get glossed over."

Analysis involves examining four or five key documents in addition to residual reports. And residual reports range from raw data containing every detail to mere three-page PDFs with only subtotals and totals. "Over time, opaque residual reporting needs to be replaced with detail and visibility to how the numbers were arrived at," Dunn said.

Residual Sheriff addresses these and other issues for residual recipients, residual payors and attorneys, alike.

For residual recipients

Services designed to help residual recipients include:

  • Profiling: Residual Sheriff examines all relevant documents, reports and information. It then prepares an expert evaluation and report that identifies residual reporting problems, and a course of action to correct problems.
  • Investigation: Based on the profiling report, Residual Sheriff works with the recipient to determine inaccuracies in residual reporting and payments, and help recover underpayment of residuals due. In certain cases it may be necessary to work with an attorney.
  • Patrol: A subscription service for MLSs and sub-ISOs, it verifies monthly residual payments going forward.

For residual payors

Services designed to assist residual payors include:

  • Community: Residual Sheriff provides free information to processors, ISOs and super ISOs concerning best practices related to residuals.
  • STAR (Seal To Accurate Residuals): Residual Sheriff provides consulting and custom services to processors and payors. Those that pass an annual audit may qualify for Residual Sheriff's STAR Seal of Approval.

Expertise at hand

For attorneys, staff is available for expert witness work including file review and research, and report preparation, deposition and testimony. For those whose portfolios comprise 500 or more merchants, Residual Sheriff provides a free telephone consultation. "We don't make guarantees that we're going to come up with thousands of dollars because we won't know until we do the analysis," Dunn said. "But for many, it's found money. And accurate, verifiable residual reporting makes for happy agents and sub-ISOs, which translates directly into more new sales and higher merchant retention." end of article

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