Credit Card Surcharges Are Now Possible for Merchants

As of January 27, 2013 merchants in the U.S. and U.S. territories have the right to add a surcharge of up to 4% to certain credit card transactions.

A payment card surcharge, also known as a checkout fee, is an additional fee that a merchant adds to a consumer’s bill when he or she uses a card for payment.

The antitrust lawsuit, filed back in 2005, alleges MasterCard and Visa conspired with some of the largest banks in the country to set the swipe fee a merchant must pay every time a consumer uses their credit card.  These fees range from 1.5 to 3.5 percent of the purchase. The banks and credit card companies say the fee is needed to pay for processing the transactions and to cover losses from fraud.

Along with paying a group of retailers $6.05 billion, Visa, MasterCard, and several banks and credit card institutions agreed to allow merchants to charge an extra credit card fee.

Visa called the settlement a “fair and reasonable deal.” MasterCard noted that it represents “a solution reached after years of litigation and months of negotiation.”

Trish Wexler, spokeswoman for the Electronic Payments Coalition (a group that represents credit card companies and banks) called the settlement “the very best and most realistic outcome possible for all involved.”

To find out how this new outcome can or will effect your business visit our Credit Card Surcharge FAQ.

If you have further questions please contact an account manager today at 1800-335-6717 ex 101