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NACHA Proposes Increasing Limit for Same Day ACH Payments

  • By Andrew Deichler
  • Published: 12/4/2017

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NACHA is requesting comment from corporate end-users on a new plan to expand Same Day ACH. Of particular interest to treasurers is a proposal for increasing the amount of individual payments on the system.

Same Day ACH is on pace to complete 120 million transactions annually, and NACHA looking to grow that number even further. Proposals on NACHA’s request for comment (RFC) include:

  • Raising the Same Day per-transaction limit from $25,000 to $100,000
  • Adding a third processing window that expands access to later in the day
  • Providing faster funds availability to receivers of both Same Day and non-Same Day ACH credits
  • Exploring interest in ACH processing on weekends and holidays.

The first three proposals would amend the NACHA Operating Rules; NACHA is accepting comment on them through January 26, 2018. The fourth proposal is intended to gauge interest from network participants; the comment deadline is February 23, 2018. NACHA is asking for any feedback the community can provide—including potential impacts beyond ACH payments, such as effects on wire operations.

“These proposals are aimed at providing more flexibility of ACH payments, which should be very favorable,” said Magnus Carlsson, AFP’s manager of treasury and payments. “Particularly, the increased dollar limit to $100,000 is a big positive for B2B transactions—hopefully this can be increased even further.”

Why the limit matters

Increasing the limit for same-day transactions would likely go a long way with corporate treasury professionals, many of whom have been critical of the service for not allowing payments higher than $25,000. At Faster Payments 2017, Julie Walker, senior treasury analyst and card and payments specialist for REI, noted that the $25,000 threshold has kept her company from exploring Same Day ACH for outgoing payments for anything other than payroll.

One area where REI would like to use Same Day ACH would be in paying federal taxes. In instances where REI makes an error or misses a payment, the retailer has to make a quick payment to correct it to avoid significant penalties. “However, again, the $25,000 threshold would preclude us from doing that,” Walker said. “So we’re really advocating for an increase in that minimum, and that the federal government become eligible to use Same Day ACH.”

The sentiment was much the same during a NACHA presentation to AFP’s Treasury Advisory Group (TAG) last month. Bill Sullivan, senior director and group manager of government and industry relations for NACHA, informed the group that NACHA is considering raising the limit to $100,000, and practitioners in attendance were highly interested. He even said there have been discussions of the limit increasing further over time.

Sullivan urged the TAG group to respond to the RFC. “It would be fantastic to know the true impact on the corporate environment, so we know what we’re doing right and what we’re doing wrong,” he said. “It’s extremely difficult to get several corporates to sit on our rules workgroup, so corporate input on the RFCs is so important to NACHA so we do get it right.”

NACHA’s RFC is available here.

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