Surcharge Notice To Acquirer
As part of their settlement of the U.S. MERCHANT class action litigation brought against them, Mastercard and Visa have asked us to provide you with certain notices regarding surcharging credit card transactions. A Surcharge is a fee that a MERCHANT adds to a consumer’s bill when he or she uses a credit card for payment. MERCHANTS that intend to surcharge are required to:
Notify Visa, Mastercard, Discover and your credit card processor at least 30 days in advance of beginning to surcharge. Notification is required before MERCHANTS may surcharge. Please go to the links below to register and to review specific regulations regarding surcharging.
Limit surcharging to credit cards only (no surcharging debit and prepaid cards). The surcharge amount cannot be more than the MERCHANT’s average Mastercard/Visa discount rate (calculated historically or based on the previous month) or the maximum surcharge cap.
Disclose the surcharge as a merchant fee and clearly alert consumers to the practice at point of store entry, at the point of sale and on the consumer's receipt. In an online environment, disclosure needs to be on the first page that references credit card brands. MERCHANTS must provide clear disclosure that the MERCHANT imposes a surcharge that is not greater than its applicable merchant discount rate for credit card transactions.
Disclosure requirements and rules and regulations and registration forms can be found at:
MERCHANTS should also consider whether they comply with all applicable state or federal laws. Currently, several states have surcharging restrictions. Please consult with legal counsel to determine whether your practices comply with relevant state and local laws. Point of sale terminals, software and gateway updates may be required to meet applicable regulations. Please contact your terminal or software provider to determine if updates are required.
The statements contained herein are based upon the information available as of the date and time of this bulletin and are subject to change. This communication is a summary and is not legal advice. As such we recommend you seek the advice of legal/regulatory counsel with respect to the above and your rights under the proposed settlement agreement.
Take advantage of surcharges by registering. Get started and enroll with your processor today: