Billing Account Violation FAQ

Why did I receive a violation notice for my implementation of Google Maps?

You have received this notice because Google has determined that your account has been using multiple billing accounts. This is a violation of Google's terms, as defined in section 3.2.3 of the Google Maps Platform Terms of Service. Under these terms, it is forbidden to create multiple billing accounts. Here's an excerpt1 of section 3.2.3(f):

(f) No Circumventing Fees. Customer will not circumvent the applicable Fees. For example, Customer will not create multiple billing accounts or Projects to avoid incurring Fees, prevent Google from accurately calculating Customer’s Service usage levels, abuse any $0 Service quotas, or offer access to the Services under a "time-sharing" or "service bureau" model.

Google Maps developers receive monthly credits for their usage. These credits are applied to each individual billing account. Creating multiple billing accounts results in monthly credits being applied to all billing accounts, which results in circumvention of fees.

If you received a violation notice, Google has determined that your account has been set up with multiple billing accounts. Here's an example setup that would trigger a Google Maps Platform Terms of Service violation.

In the following diagram, Projects 2, 3 and 4 all use Google Maps Platform APIs and are associated with two separate Billing accounts: Billing Account 2 and Billing Account 3. This setup violates the Google Maps Platform Terms of Service. Diagram showing a setup that is in violation.

Where can I view my billing accounts?

To view your billing accounts, sign in to the Manage billing account page in Google Cloud Console.

All of your billing accounts should be listed, along with number of projects associated with each billing account. If you have set up multiple organizations, you may need to select a specific organization from the Select an organization dropdown in order to see billing accounts for that organization.

If you are unable to access billing accounts due to a permission issue, please reach out to someone within your company who has the appropriate permissions. This could be the person who originally set up your Maps account, or whomever is responsible for paying bills.

Please refer to this guide for more information about billing accounts.

What do I need to do to correct my setup?

We recommend that you consolidate all of your projects that use Maps APIs, under a single billing account. If the billing account already has many projects, you may need to request an increase in your project-quota (FAQ). Here's how the example setup referenced above, would look like after it has been adjusted to be compliant: Diagram showing a compliant billing setup.

Projects 2, 3 and 4 - which use Google Maps Platform APIs - are all consolidated under Billing Account 2. Billing Account 3 is no longer associated with any projects that use Google Maps Platform APIs. Note that Billing Account 1 can continue to be utilized as Project 1 doesn't have any Google Maps Platform APIs enabled.

Using Projects instead of Billing accounts

You may have set up billing accounts to represent entities that you either control or do business with. Examples of such entities include:

  • Business units or divisions within your own company.
  • Independent companies, which are their own legal entities, but are a part of your larger company.
  • Your client companies who you offer services to and may have signed contracts with.
  • Websites that you manage, either for yourself or for your clients.
  • Separate subdomains within your larger website.

All of these entities can be represented using projects. If you have a complicated setup or need more flexibility, consider using organization and folder resources to organize your billing. Refer to the Guide to Cloud Billing Resource Organization & Access Management for detailed information.

Note that Google provides invoices and statements per billing account, not per project. Billing reports and cost trend reports are available from your Google Cloud Console to help you distribute costs across your entities. Please refer to View your billing reports and cost trends for more documentation and video recordings.

Volume discounts

Google Maps Platform APIs follow a tiered, usage-based pricing model. With this model, you pay less for usage as your usage increases. This could result in lower bills for you. Consolidating your spending under one billing account helps you to take advantage of tiered pricing.

Unfortunately, a setup with multiple billing accounts is a violation of the Google Maps Platform Terms of Service. There are no supported alternatives available at this time. If you believe you have a valid reason for maintaining multiple Billing accounts (for example, legal compliance) please file an appeal by responding to the violation notice email you have received, or via your Google Cloud Console.

  1. The Google Maps Platform Terms of Service is subject to change. Please check the terms directly for updated verbiage and placement.