Using pre-auths

Good to Know

The Register app and the Bar Tab Auths app can both create pre-auths, but the Register app can assign pre-auths to orders and is available on all Clover devices. The Bar Tab Auths app is limited in functionality and is not available on the Clover Station.

Enable taking pre-auths

You can use the pre-auth feature to check if a customer’s payment card has enough funds to pay for an order and save the card information to ensure the customer pays for the order. With this feature, you don’t need to worry about keeping customer cards since the information is saved on your Clover device.

For example, you own a bar and want to make sure customers have enough money on their payment cards and that the customer doesn’t walk out without paying. The pre-auth feature lets you check the funds on a card and saves the card information to ensure payment is made.

To use this feature, you must first enable it in the Setup app.

Good to know

If you do not see the Enable pre-auth checkbox in the Setup app, contact Customer Support and ask them to enable “Tip Adjust” on your account.

To enable pre-auth feature:

  1. Open the Setup app .
  2. Tap Payments.
  3. Select the Enable pre-auth checkbox.

Change default pre-auth amount

Pre-auths are set at $25 at default, meaning your Clover device checks to see if a swiped payment card can be used to make a $25 payment. You can change this default amount in the Setup app, with the maximum amount being $100.

To change the default pre-auth amount:

  1. Open the Setup app .
  2. Tap Payments.
  3. Tap Set a default amount (max. $100.00).
  4. Enter an amount, then tap Save.

Create a pre-auth in the Register app

You can create a pre-auth in the Register app as long as your Clover device is online. This creates a hold on the card to ensure that the customer has enough funds to pay for the order. Customers will only see a single charge on their card.

Every time a new card is swiped to create a pre-auth in the same order, the new card’s cardholder name is added as an order note that you can edit. For example, a customer wants to associate another customer’s name to the bar tab. You can change the edit note to include the new customer’s name while the authorization will still let you know who the original cardholder is.

A single payment card can only be used for one pre-auth on a single order, but that one card can be used for pre-auths on different orders at the same time.

You cannot create a pre-auth in the Register app by swiping a card on a tethered device, such as an FD40 or a Clover Mini that’s connected to a Clover Station.

Important

To use the pre-auth feature on the Clover Station, you need to enable swiping on Clover Station in Setup app > Payments. A Clover Station that’s tethered to another device has swiping disabled by default to protect you from EMV-related chargebacks.

Good to know

Pre-auths created in the Register app will not show up in the Bar Tab Auths app or the Authorizations app. Go to the Orders app to see the orders with the pre-auth.

To create an order with a pre-auth:

  1. Open the Register app .
  2. Swipe a payment card.
  3. Tap Pre-Auth $XX.XX.
  4. (Optional) Enter a customer’s name, then tap SAVE.
  5. Add items to the newly pre-auth’d order
  6. Save the order or complete payment on the order.

Complete payment for a pre-auth

When you create a pre-auth in the Register app, the pre-auth is stored in the Orders app. You can complete payment in the Orders app.

Pre-auths are synced across all devices, so you can complete payment on a different device than the one that created the pre-auth. For example, you can create pre-auths on a Clover Station, then complete payment with a Clover Flex so customers don’t have to go up to the counter.

Orders with a pre-auth cannot be combined with any other order.

If a pre-auth is fully paid using alternate payment methods (such as cash), the pre-auth is voided once the balance is completely paid. This prevents the pre-auth from showing up on credit card statements and making customers think they’ve paid for their tab twice. 

The time it takes to remove the hold on the cardholder’s bank account will vary depending on the bank. Customers should contact their bank if they have any questions about the hold.

Unpaid pre-auths are not voided if you close out a batch. The pre-auths will remain until payment is completed.

To pay with a pre-authorized card in the Register app:

  1. Open the Register app .
  2. Tap Pre-Auth.
  3. Tap Add Payment.
  4. Tap Charge $XX.XX on This Card.
  5. Tap CHARGE.
  6. Follow the instructions to complete the payment, then tap Done.

To pay with a pre-authorized card in the Orders app:

  1. Open the Orders app .
  2. Tap the order with the pre-auth.
  3. Tap Add Payment.
  4. Tap Charge $XX.XX on This Card.
  5. Tap CHARGE.
  6. Follow the instructions to complete the payment, then tap Done.

Void a pre-auth

When you create a pre-auth in the Register app, you can tap UNDO in the dialogue box that pops up to void it. If this dialogue box disappears before you can undo the pre-auth, you can void it in the Orders app.

Voiding a pre-auth will not delete the order.

Voiding a pre-auth will remove the hold on the cardholder’s bank account. The time it takes for the hold to be removed will vary depending on the bank. Customers should contact their bank if they have any questions about the hold.

Good to Know

By default, only admins and managers are allowed to void pre-auths. To allow employees to void pre-auths, go to the Employees app > PERMISSIONS > Register and set the Employee checkbox for Void pre-authorization.

To void a pre-auth in the Orders app:

  1. Open the Orders app .
  2. Tap the order with the pre-auth.
  3. Tap Void Pre-Auth.
  4. Tap Void pre-auth when the dialog box pops up.

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