A class action lawsuit filed against major credit cards companies MasterCard and Visa, originally settled back in 2010, has seen revisions to take additional claims into account. The revision to the settlement doesn’t affect the total amount to be paid by the credit cards companies but will revise the release of claims in accordance with a second action that was added to the original lawsuit.
The original class action lawsuit was filed against the credit card companies back in 2000. At that time plaintiffs alleged that MasterCard and Visa’s acceptance policies unlawfully forced merchants to accept credit backed debit cards in order to be able to accept Visa and MasterCard credit cards. As the two credit card companies involved in the lawsuit are two of the most widely used in the US, merchants had no choice but to adjust their policies in order to comply.
In 2004 a plaintiff named in the original filing filed a separate lawsuit against the credit card powerhouses alleging unfair exclusion policies. James Attridge alleged in this filing that Visa and MasterCard policies unfairly eliminated competition from other credit cards companies which allowed them to unfairly charge for network services.
While this revision may not seem necessary on the surface because the total settlement remained at 31 million, there was more at stake for merchants than just the money. Having this settlement adjusted to include the claims filed in the second lawsuit will help ensure that MasterCard and Visa (and other credit card companies) are held responsible for unlawful anti-competition practices and policies.
If you feel your company has suffered financial damage do to illegal or unlawful practices of a third party you need to reach out to a legal professional immediately. An experienced California business attorney can thoroughly review contracts and policies to ensure that your rights as a merchant are upheld. If another company is involved in practices that are damaging your business or reducing your profits, your attorney can take action to stop the unlawfully activity and fight to get you any financial damages you might be entitled to.
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