What Does “SQ” on My Bank Statement Mean?

Have you ever closely reviewed your bank statement only to come across an unfamiliar “SQ” charge? These vague fees can be confusing, making it hard to identify the source of the transaction. This article will explain that “SQ” charges represent Square payment processing fees that occur when making purchases from sellers using Square devices or platforms.

What is Square?

Square is a major payment processing company that offers various hardware and software to help businesses accept credit card payments. When you make a purchase from a merchant using Square, the transaction flows through Square’s system.

Square charges fees to process these payments, which show up marked with “SQ” on the customer’s bank statement rather than listing the actual business name. This lack of clear identifiers can make the charge hard to recognize.

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Breaking Down Square Payment Descriptors

Typical Square charges on bank statements include:

  • SQ followed by asterisk *
  • Merchant’s name or registered business name
  • Brief description of business type

For example:

SQ* Leila's Bakery

The vague “SQ” code combined with an unfamiliar business name often leaves customers wondering what the charge is for.

Why Did I Receive a Square Fee?

Seeing a Square processing fee on your statement indicates that you utilized a Square device or platform to make a purchase. This could be:

  • Paying in-person with a mobile card reader
  • Checking out through a seller’s Square Online store
  • Using Square Invoices to pay a bill

In these situations, Square covers the transaction costs behind the scenes, then passes their fees along to the customer.

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How to Identify Suspicious SQ Charges

If you see an unrecognized SQ charge on your bank statement, first check for supporting information like:

  • Merchant name
  • Business category
  • Date/time
  • Location

This can provide clues about the potential source.

sq charge

You can also:

  • Search Square receipts for matching details
  • Contact Square Customer Support for transaction specifics
  • Dispute fraudulent-seeming charges with your bank

Being proactive protects against unknown Square fees slipping through unnoticed.

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Preventing Confusion Over Square Charges

Seeing an unexplained SQ fee on your bank statement can cause confusion and frustration. But there are steps you can take to avoid uncertainty over Square charges in the future:

Save Receipts

Get in the habit of holding onto receipts anytime you make a purchase with a seller using a mobile card reader, Square Online store, or other Square platform. Having the receipt makes it easy to cross-reference vague SQ charges on your statement against your purchases. Receipts also include helpful transaction details like:

  • Date/Time
  • Seller name
  • Items purchased

So when an SQ fee appears later, you can quickly connect it to the right merchant.

Recognize Square’s Role

Remember that Square acts as an invisible payment processor behind many modern transactions. When you check out with a seller using Square, the fee gets passed along to you the customer. Keep in mind Square is facilitating the payment, even if you don’t see their name prominently displayed.

Review Statements Routinely

Don’t just glance at your monthly statement. Actually take time to review line-by-line for any fees you don’t immediately recognize. Look up unfamiliar SQ charges right away while the details are still fresh. This prevents forgetting about them later and then disputing legitimate transactions.

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Report Suspicious Activity

If you spot SQ fees that seem fraudulent or make no sense based on your purchase history, report them quickly. Alert your bank about potential unauthorized charges and contact Square Customer Support for transaction details that could jog your memory.

Staying proactive about identifying Square fees quickly can help avoid later headaches. Saving receipts, understanding Square’s facilitator role, regularly reviewing statements, and reporting questionable charges right away makes you less likely to be confused over mysterious SQ transactions.

The Bottom Line

Finding an SQ fee on your bank statement simply indicates that Square facilitated the payment transaction. But verifying the source is key to tracking purchases and watching for fraudulent activity. Being aware that Square acts as an invisible middleman can help identify their fees.

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