Visa Mastercard Class Action : Millions Eligible for 5.5B Interchange Fee Settlement

Visa Mastercard Interchange Fee Settlement

Credit card titans Mastercard and Visa are a part of the largest private antitrust class-action settlement in U.S. history. Millions of merchants, from transportation providers to restauranteurs, may be eligible for a share of the 5.5B interchange fee settlement, after allegedly experiencing 15 years of inflated interchange fees.

What is the Visa/Mastercard Interchange Fee Settlement? 
On March 15, 2023, the Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit gave final approval of the $5.54 billion settlement on behalf of U.S. merchants who did not exclude themselves from the class action. 

The Payment Card Interchange Fee and Merchant Discount Antitrust Litigation, or “Payment Card Settlement” alleges that Visa and Mastercard breached antitrust laws by imposing interchange fees, that led to millions of businesses paying excessive interchange fees for accepting Visa and Mastercard cards. They also allegedly enforced rules that limited merchants from steering their customers to other payment methods and conspired together about some of the challenged business practices.    

What is an interchange fee? 
Interchange fees, also known as swipe fees, are transactions fees paid on every credit and debit card payment taken by merchants. These fees cover the issuing bank’s cost of offering payment products to consumers and businesses and pay for rewards, fraud and risks borne by the bank. Credit card payment networks, like Mastercard and Visa, and payment gateways charge a percentage-based fee on every transaction. 

Interchange fees typically represent 70% to 90% of the total fees paid by merchants to banks. 

Who is eligible? 
Merchants who accepted any Visa or Mastercard payments between January 1, 2004, and January 25, 2019, are eligible to claim a share of the $5.5 billion Settlement. 

How much money will I get back?
The amount of money you will receive back is dependent on the amount paid in interchange fees from your Visa and Mastercard card transactions (between you and your customers) from January 1, 2004, through January 25, 2019. 

What’s the process to filing a claim? 
Claim forms were mailed out in December 2023, simply follow the instructions on the form to file a claim online or by mail. All claims must be submitted by 11:59 pm PST on May 31, 2024

Can anyone file a claim on my behalf?
There are companies who can help you navigate filing your claim form for a portion of your settlement. However, you can file  with the Class Administrator on your own at no cost. Additionally, the Class Administrator or Rule 23(b)(3) Class Counsel is available for assistance with understanding and filing your Claim Form — free of charge.

When will I get paid? 
Payments are expected to be made after the end of the Claims Period on May 31, 2024 since settlement amounts cannot be determined until all Claims are filed, reviewed, and approved by the Court. 

If you have more questions, please visit the official website


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