Credit card swipe fee settlement again asked for appeal

Credit card swipe fees continue to be a battleground.

In December of 2013, U.S. District Judge John Gleeson approved a $5.7 billion settlement that ended eight years of litigation between credit card providers Visa and MasterCard and a number of U.S. merchants over unlawful and excessive credit card swipe and processing fees. However, since then it has been appealed but not yet overturned.

Last week, according to a press release from the National Retail Federation and the Retail Industry Leaders Association, the two groups have again asked for an appeals court to overturn the ruling.

NRF Senior Vice President and General Counsel Mallory Duncan said that the initial settlement is not valid because it was only agreed upon by a handful of merchants who were represented in the suit and does not signify the feelings of the retail industry as a whole.

"Given that the judge knew this backroom deal was opposed by a broad range of small and large retailers alike and allows these fees to continue to skyrocket, it clearly should never have been approved," Duncan said. "This is a serious mistake the appellate court needs to correct."

RILA Executive Vice President and General Counsel Deborah White added that a number of retailers across the industry, after fully reviewing the settlement, have reached the conclusion that there is no benefit to them. She said that it undermines the legal rights and fails to restrain Visa and MasterCard from increasing swipe fees.

We mentioned back in December that this battle was far from being over, even with the settlement, and now it seems the battle over credit card processing services and fees is just getting started.

by Ty Hardison

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