We’re a service company, and we have reimbursable expenses on projects that we have to bill the client for. Most companies charge a fee for it, i.e. 5% (no matter how long it takes to get paid back). Is that Ribis?
Reasons why it shouldn’t be considered Ribis:
1) It’s a service fee (just like loan brokers charges percentage based even though the work is the same)
2) the fee applies even when it’s techincally not a loan such as when client pays back instantly and there’s no time lapse between the expense and the payback
3) it’s similar to, and in a way even more lenient than a penalty for late payments (because here the fee is applied as a penalty for making us lay out money which should have been paid by the client in advance) which is permissible for loans
4) it doesn’t look like Ribis since it’s a standard that businesses who are not in the lending industry, so constantly because for whatever reason they have these reimbursable expenses and it’s common and normal to charge a percentage
According to what you are saying it would not be ribbis, as you mentioned, because it is a service charge coupled with the fact that the company does not takes the same amount even if the bill is paid instantly.