An eCheck (electronic check) is a form of online payment where money is electronically withdrawn from the payer’s checking account, transferred over the Automated Clearing House (ACH) network, and deposited into the payee’s checking account. With an eCheck merchant account, a business can withdraw payments for a good or service directly from their customer’s bank account. The payment must be authorized by the customer, either by signed contract, via a recorded voice conversation, or acceptance of an internet based “Terms and Conditions”.
eCheck processing is somewhat similar to paper check processing, but the whole process is executed faster. Traditionally, a customer manually writes a paper check and sends it to the product or service provider. Today’s technology allows the process to happen electronically, saves both parties a considerable amount of time and provides much more control and superior tracking.
eChecks are actually one of the most popular forms of recurring payment. You can use it to receive repeat payments with an authorization that approves recurring payments.
The eCheck clearing process varies provider to provider. Usually, funds are verified within 24 to 48 hours of the transaction being initiated. Should the payer have the funds available in their account, the transaction is cleared within 3 to 5 business days and the funds are moved from the payer’s account to the payee’s account.