Visa and Mastercard Will Pay $6 Billion for Interchange Fee Settlement

Visa and Mastercard have reached a settlement on a 14-year-old lawsuit over fees charged when merchants accept card payments. The Court has preliminarily approved a proposed settlement of a maximum of approximately $6.24 billion and a minimum of at least $5.54 billion in a class action lawsuit, called In re Payment Card Interchange Fee and Merchant Discount Antitrust Litigation.

Visa and Mastercard Settlement

This lawsuit is principally about the interchange fees attributable to merchants that accepted Visa or Mastercard credit or debit cards between January 1, 2004 and January 25, 2019, and Visa’s and Mastercard’s rules for merchants that have accepted those cards. The Court has not decided who was right or wrong. Nor does it say if any laws were violated. Instead, both sides agreed to settle the case and avoid the cost and risk of trial.

Eligibility

I received a notice of the settlement in the mail. If you received a Notice in the mail as well, records show that you are probably in the Settlement Class. So, this is who’s eligible:

All persons, businesses, and other entities that have accepted any Visa-Branded Cards and/or Mastercard-Branded Cards in the United States at any time from January 1, 2004 to January 25, 2019, except that the Rule 23(b)(3) Settlement Class shall not include

  • the Dismissed Plaintiffs
  • the United States government
  • the named Defendants in this Action or their directors, officers, or members of their families, or
  • financial institutions that have issued Visa-Branded Cards or Mastercard-Branded Cards

Guru’s Wrap-up

This settlement is for those who have accepted Visa and Mastercard payments. To file a claim you have to wait for Court’s final approval. If you received a Notice in the mail, a Claim Form will be mailed, or emailed, to you automatically. Also, the Claim Form will be posted on this website and available by calling, 1-800-625-6440. Check out the settlement website for more information.

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