Dunning for ACH

Chargify allows you to customize the information you send during the dunning process to your subscribers that pay via ACH. In the event that you have ACH based subscribers, you’ll want to customize your emails to focus on the needed update of banking information, rather than card-related data.

ACH Dunning Settings

Select Retries and Dunning (ACH). Use the controls under this section to edit a host of options.

Select your dunning for ACH settings

Retries & Final Action

There’s a couple things to keep in mind when you are setting up your dunning settings for ACH:

  • Decide upon the number of days you’d like your user to spend in dunning
  • What should happen at the end of the dunning process
  • What communications should be sent
Edit the total amount of days for your dunning process
Select the final action at the end of an unsuccessful dunning process
Edit the dunning email

If you select any of the options above, you’ll be directed towars the Retry Settings where you can configure each of these items.

When editing the email body, keep in mind this this only affects the inital email that is sent to subscribers. Subsequent emails in the dunning schedule are configured below.

From Address

You can specify a unique email address that sends the dunning emails. This is especially helpful if you’d like to have all dunning-related emails come from your billing team.

Edit the "From Address"

BCC Emails

If you’d like to send a copy of all dunning-related emails to a specific address, please enter the email address here:

Edit the BCC email address

Dunning Emails

Set your schedule for your dunning-related communications. Easily add, remove and edit the existing emails for your ACH-dunning process.

Add, remove or edit your dunning emails
When setting the schedule for the dunning emails, please be sure to take into consideration the length of the dunning process set under Retries & Final Action. For example, you cannot send dunning emails on day 10, if your dunning process ends after 5 days.

Dunning Email Body

Include dynamic text specifically geared toward the dunning process. Choose from a host of variables to give your subscriber as much information as process as to why their account is currently in dunning. Please see our documentation on dunning email parameters for more information.

Edit the contents of your dunning email

Failed Payments

If you allow your subscibers to pay by ACH, you may have run into a failed ACH payment. The guide below will instruct you on how to re-collect the funds and properly reconcile the subscription.

If the payment fails when it is attempted, the subscription will immediately transition to past_due. From here, the dunning process begins to attempt to collect the past due funds.

You should receive a notification of a failed ACH payment in your Authorize.Net account after it fails to post to your account. This will occur several days after the original payment was submitted successfully to the gateway by Chargify. Chargify does not receive notification from Authorize.net when an ACH payment fails.

Once a failed ACH payment has been located, you can follow the steps below to achieve the desired outcome.

ACH Failures Method 1

  1. When an ACH payment fails several days later, you can record an External Refund in Chargify. This will reduce the revenue in Chargify by the given amount.

  2. You can attempt a one-time charge with a different active payment method on file in the subscription. This is if there are multiple payment methods on file. Simply activate a card on file for the subscription, and proceed with the one-time charge.

  3. Method 1 will not trigger any dunning emails because a failed one-time payment does not move a subscription into a past_due state.

ACH Failures Method 2

  1. When an ACH payment fails several days later, you can record an External Refund in Chargify. This will reduce the revenue in Chargify by the given amount.

  2. As alternative to issuing a one-time charge, as denoted in Method 1, we suggest the following:

    • If needed adjust the subscription’s balance to make the Next Billing Amount match the amount you need to attempt to charge
    • Change the next billing date to the current time / current timestamp.
    • Adjusting the balance will not charge right away, but will increase their next amount owed on their next renewal date. By changing the date to the current time, you are attempting to process the transaction immediately.
  3. If the subscription’s payment fails, the subscription moves into the past_due state. This will trigger the dunning process which will send an email to the customer. This is assuming you have a day 1 email configured in your dunning settings.

  4. If the subscription payment succeeds, you’ll need to move the next billing date back to the appropriate day in which the subscription should renew.

API Version

If you have Authorize.Net configured to programmatically notify you of an ACH failure, or are listening for the charge.failed event from Stripe, you can follow the same sequence of events using the Chargify API.