New NACS Website Helps Retailers Oppose Swipe Fee Settlement
ALEXANDRIA, Va. -- NACS, the Association for Convenience and Fuel Retailing, launched a website to help retailers voice their opposition to the proposed credit card swipe fee settlement.
The website, www.merchantsobject.com, provides the tools for all retailers affected by the proposed settlement, according to NACS Online. It provides a simple-to-use platform for retailers to weigh in on the discussion, and to share in their opposition via social media, including Twitter and Facebook.
"NACS developed the website to allow all retailers, regardless of channel, to make their voices heard," said NACS President and CEO Hank Armour. "If you do not make your opposition to this bad proposal known, the court will presume that you accept the terms of the settlement."
As CSNews Online previously reported, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Court ruled today that an appeal of the proposed class-action swipe fee settlement with Visa Inc., MasterCard Inc. and other financial institutions should wait until objections to the settlement are filed and heard in September. This allows settlement notices to continue to be distributed to retailers across the U.S.
Approximately 8 million retailers overall received notices about the proposed settlement and have until May 28 to opt-out or object to it. All retailers who accepted Visa and/or MasterCard cards at any time between Jan. 1, 2004 and Nov. 27, 2012 are affected by the proposal.
"NACS is both opting out and objecting to the proposed settlement because it fails to modify the price-fixing and other anti-competitive activities of Visa, MasterCard and their card-issuing banks in order to bring competition to this broken market," stated the trade organization. "While retailers might get a couple of months’ worth of their fees back through the settlement, their swipe fees would likely increase by more than the dollars they would receive before they even receive a single penny from the settlement fund."
NACS also argues that the proposed settlement requires class members in the case to release Visa and MasterCard from liability forever, for any anticompetitive rules currently in place including the interchange or swipe fee rules and/or "'substantially similar rules' instituted at any time in the future."
Class plaintiffs in the case, known as "In Re Payment Card Interchange Fee and Merchant Discount Antitrust Litigation," are NACS, Affiliated Foods Midwest, Coborn's Inc., D'Agostino Supermarkets, Jethro Holdings LLC, National Association of Truck Stop Operators (NATSO), National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA), National Cooperative Grocers Association (NCGA), National Grocers Association (NGA) and National Restaurant Association (NRA).