Semi-Integration Transaction Types

When you semi-integrate your POS systems with Clover devices, merchants can conduct different types of customer transactions using these devices.

For instance, at a full service restaurant, merchants can charge customers first for the bill amount and then for the tip amount even after the customer card has been charged. At a retail store, tips are not expected. At hotels, merchants can place a hold on a customer transaction during check-in and then update the transaction with necessary charges during check-out.

To support such a wide variety of merchant businesses, we at Clover provide support 3 types of customer transactions on semi-integrated Clover devices. Our SDKs reflect these distinctions by providing corresponding classes.

Table 1: Semi-Integration Transaction Types and Corresponding Classes

Transaction Type Corresponding Classes

Sale

SaleRequest() and SalesResponse()

Auth

AuthRequest() and AuthResponse()

Pre-Auth

PreAuthRequest() and PreAuthResponse()

Each transaction class inherits from the TransactionRequest() and TransactionResponse() parent classes.

The next sections explain the 3 transaction types in detail.

Sale

A Sale is a customer transaction where the merchant business does not expect tips. While a tip amount can be added, it is permitted only before the transaction occurs. A Sale is also used for transactions that are not tipped.

Typical businesses where Sale transactions occur include:

  • Quick service restaurants, where customers select a tip amount before before completing the transaction with a payment

  • Retail stores, where tips are not expected

Auth

An Auth is a customer transaction where the merchant can adjust tip amounts after the initial transaction. The tip adjustment can be made without requiring the customer’s payment method (physical card or digital wallet) to interact with the Clover device for a second time.

Before an Auth transaction is settled, there is no limit to the number of times a merchant can adjust the tip amount on a Clover device. This is helpful in case of human errors.

Note

It is important to note the following rules about tip adjustments:

  • The most recent tip adjustment overrides all previous tip adjust amounts. Tip adjustments are not summed.

  • We at Clover do not place a limit on tip adjustment amounts. However, if merchants tip adjust amounts more than 20% of the bill, funds are not guaranteed subject to the rules set by card schemes (such as Visa and MasterCard) and electronic payment associations.

Typical businesses where Auth transactions occur include full service restaurants, where customers can use a credit card to authorize an initial value, and then add a tip amount to the receipt after the card has been charged.

Pre-Auth

A Pre-Auth is a customer transaction where the merchant can validate that a given amount is available on the customer payment method (physical card or digital wallet), and then also places a hold for that amount. This amount is deducted from the customer account (credit limit or bank balance), but not yet transferred to the merchant.

Typical businesses where Pre-Auth transactions occur include:

  • Hotels, where a hold is placed on a customer credit card during check-in and is later adjusted for policies, such as incidental damages and in-room charges

  • Car rental agencies, where a hold is placed on a customer credit card during vehicle hand-off and is later adjusted for policies, such as possible incidental damages, late return of vehicle, and failing to refuel

Capturing Pre-Auth Amounts

Merchants must capture Pre-Auth amounts to have funds transferred to their account. Once a merchant captures a Pre-Auth amount, the transaction further continues as an Auth transaction and is governed by the same Auth transaction rules.

There are 2 important cases about capturing Pre-Auth amounts:

  • Capturing a part of the Pre-Auth amount: When merchants capture a part of the Pre-Auth amount, the remaining amount is credited back to the customer account. For instance, for a $300 Pre-Auth transaction, if a merchant captures $180, the remaining $120 is credited back to the customer account.

  • Capturing more than the Pre-Auth amount: When merchants capture a Pre-Auth amount that is greater than the original amount, funds are not guaranteed due to possible insufficient funds in the customer account. In addition, if merchants capture Pre-Auth amounts more than 20% of the original amount, funds are not guaranteed subject to the rules set by card schemes (such as Visa and MasterCard) and electronic payment associations.

Note

Merchants can void a Pre-Auth transaction for releasing the funds held from the customer account.

Debit and Credit Card Pre-Auth Transactions

If a customer uses a debit card for a Pre-Auth transaction, the transaction may become invalid if it is not captured anywhere between one and eight business days depending on the card issuing institution policy. Specific merchants, such car rental agencies, should avoid accepting debit cards since the Pre-Auth hold can expire before the transaction is captured and settled.

If a customer uses a credit card, the transaction may continue to stay on hold for as long as thirty days depending on the card issuing institution policy.