Welcome! This forum has a treasure trove of great info – Scouters helping Scouters! Just a heads up, though - all content, information, and opinions shared on this forum are those of the author, not the BSA.
The world we find ourselves in today has prompted our organization to provide you with the right tools to continue Scouting in your communities. As part of this effort, we have been working on a way for your units to accept and make payments for renewal/rechartering and other items for unit operation in Scoutbook through PayPal.
We plan to have this released and available to you by Thursday, September 3, 2020. We’ve developed the following FAQ regarding this new feature.
As a unit leader, how do I setup the unit’s PayPal Business account to accept unit dues in Scoutbook.com?
If the unit does not have a PayPal Business account, the unit leader may visit PayPal.com and create a business account. Units should follow the same procedures in creating the PayPal Business account as they do/did when establishing their bank account. Once established, follow the steps below.
If the unit already has a PayPal Business account, login to PayPal.com. Navigate to My Apps & Credentials page, use the toggle to switch to live testing apps. Navigate to Rest API apps and click Create App. The app details page opens and displays the credentials. Copy and save the Client ID and Secret (Access Key). Click Save.
Login to Scoutbook.com, navigate to the Edit Unit page. There, use the toggle to Enable PayPal, enter PayPal Client ID and Access Key. Click on the Update button. The unit is now ready to accept unit dues payment using PayPal.
Only the Unit Treasurers or Unit Admins can enable PayPal for unit payment dues.
Can all units enable PayPal for unit dues payments?
Yes, all units can enable PayPal to receive unit dues payments. However, as a precaution, councils may block units from using PayPal even if the unit has already enabled PayPal in Scoutbook.com.
Who pays for any PayPal processing fees?
The unit is responsible for any fees associated with accepting payments through PayPal.
How do I use PayPal to pay unit dues?
In Scoutbook.com, parent/guardians can navigate to their Scout’s account page, select payment logs and add a payment. In Categories, select PayPal Payment. All payments will be credited to the unit’s PayPal account and not the BSA National Office.
In the Scouting App, parents/guardian can navigate to their Scout’s dashboard. Then, click on Payment Logs. Identify which due you wish to pay, then click the Pay button. You can then complete the transaction through PayPal.
How do I track my payment?
In Scoutbook.com, navigate to your Scout’s account page, select payment logs and see a list of payments made.
In the Scouting App, navigate to your Scout’s dashboard. Then, click on Payment Logs. Under the Paid tab, you’ll see the list of payments made.
Can I cancel my payment?
No, payments made to the unit’s PayPal account cannot be cancelled from Scoutbook or the Scouting App. Please contact the Unit Treasurer or Unit Admin and use the PayPal Payment ID for reference. The PayPal Payment ID can be found when viewing the payment logs in both the Scouting App and Scoutbook.com.
How do I get a refund for my payment?
Payments made to the unit’s PayPal account cannot be refunded from Scoutbook. This must be done through PayPal. Please contact the Unit Treasurer or Unit Admin and use the PayPal Payment ID for reference. The PayPal Payment ID can be found when viewing the payment log. In the Scouting App, this number is referenced as your confirmation number.
If you have additional questions, we encourage you to visit https://help.scoutbook.com. This is a great place to also find out when more features and functions roll out through Scoutbook.com.
Thank you for all that you do to support the Scouting movement. We hope you find this new feature will help simplify these types of transactions in your units.
@MichaelaMonson - I will however add my experience with paypal for both the Pack and Troop. Paypal has limited our troop account as they were looking for documents to validate the business entity. They wanted utility bills, tax documents, etc none of which the unit has. Just fair warning.
@DonovanMcNeil - I would certainly caution against individuals doing so. The Pack however has not been asked to validate the business entity. The troop ran up against the issue when we placed summer camp payments as transactions. The dollar amounts and number of transactions was a trigger. I finally gave up on trying to appease them.
As I recall, money collect from PayPal will stay in PayPal. There is a very low withdraw/transfer limit like a hundred a month. If we going to utilize PayPal with Scoutbook, it will not difficult to transfer money to unit bank account especially the big amount for recharter.
When I was volunteer for school PTA, there was $300 monthly limit to be transferred to its business account.
It e we I’ll be a problem when unit collect the recharter fee and try to transfer the fund back to its account.
I am associated with PayPal business accounts for two units. There is no limit on how much money you can transfer/send with a verified account.
I want to amplify a comment above. It is not proper to use a personal account in this case. It needs to be a business account.
Be prepared that you may have occasional “fun” to deal with. One of the units has a mismatch between its name in PayPal and what’s on its EIN. “Pack xxx” vs. “Cub Scout Pack xxx”. That triggered an apparent need for an IRS form and possibly other issues they are working through.
Also, if you exceed a certain number of annual transactions or dollar amount, PayPal will have to file a report with the IRS, so that could add some more complexity if your CO has to file taxes.
Reading though Paypal stuff - it’s not clear to me if you have to build fees into your amount, or if they add them to the amount. Looks to me like if someone funds their paypal through a credit card, paypal adds on their 3%, but if they link their bank account, no extra fee. Do other agree with that reading?
In other words if (say) dues are $100, do we have to ask folks to pay $103? (That’s what we do with our square store now, and literally nobody complains - cause they can always drop a check.)
PayPal tacks on a fee for all payments unless it is “sent to a friend” which does not apply to business accounts. The fee is deducted from the amount the business receives so if you charge $100, you may only receive $97.
I would definitely want to pass the fee on to the users directly as a convenience charge. would be difficult to track and budget for those fees. I suspect some card companies may object to card use fees though. When I chatted with SOAR about this (they also use paypal), they couldn’t accommodate passing the fee on to users, we would need to build into the priced item, once we know what the percentage is. Is it a set or scaled percentage and is there a flat transaction fee as well, like 30cents per transaction and 3%, etc…
TroopWebHost will allow you to pass the fees on to the person making the charge. I’m looking forward to the day ScoutBook will be built out enough to do it all, but until then it seems to work the best for what I use it for (web site, email, event registration and calendar, accounting, tracking and displaying
scout account balances, fundraising, etc). We do keep advancement in ScoutBook though.
Having trouble figuring out how to handle a Payments Log situation. If a scout has a credit on his account from fundraising or overpaying something, that credit can be applied to offset a charge, but if there’s a balance after the credit, I don’t see how to use PayPal to just pay that balance.
For example, scout has a $15 credit / campout costs $20 / balance owed is $5. If I go onto that Payments Log item for the $20 campout, my only option is to pay $20 with PayPal. I can’t see how to reduce the payment to $5. Hope that makes sense.