Changes in Credit Card Rules

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posted 2/6/2013 in News & Articles

Effective January 27, 2013, MasterCard and Visa revised their acceptance rules for transactions at U.S. merchants as a result of a class-action interchange lawsuit settlement against the two brands.
This ruling applies to Credit Cards only and does not apply to Debit Cards. What this means is merchants cannot apply a surcharge to debit card transactions, regardless of whether they are PIN or Signature based. Merchants also cannot apply surcharge on prepaid cards.

The following are additional rules of which you should be aware of:

  • There are limits to the amount merchants can surcharge. Merchant cannot assess a surcharge of more than 4 percent.
  • If merchants do surcharge on credit card transactions, they are required to notify customers at the store entrance or at the point-of-sale (POS) device before customers agree to the purchase. This includes purchases made online.
  • Merchant must disclosure surcharge amounts on every receipt.

The following will still apply and have not changed as a result of this ruling:

  • Financial institutions cannot charge a fee for cash advances made at in-branch terminals.
  • Merchants can offer discounts for cash and check purchases.
  • Merchants can set minimum credit card transaction amount of no more than $10.00