New Credit Card Class Action Lawsuit Means Eligible Merchants Can Get Up To $600

Did you accept a Visa or Mastercard credit card payment between 2001 and 2021?💰

A pile of Visa and Mastercard credit cards.
Senior Editor

A pile of Visa and Mastercard credit cards.

A credit card class action settlement totalling USD$131 million has been reached between Visa, Mastercard and several Canadian banks, allowing eligible merchants to claim up to $600 back in compensation.

Last month, the law firms representing the "Canadian credit card interchange fees action" confirmed the court approval of the settlement, which is worth approximately CA$188 million.

The class action alleges that a number of banks, which includes Citigroup, Capital One, National Bank, CIBC, Royal Bank, TD and Bank of Nova Scotia, among others, as well as Visa and Mastercard, "conspired to set higher interchange fees."

Per the lawsuit, interchange fees are the charges that businesses must pay so that they can accept payments from people with Visa and Mastercard credit cards.

They're also accused of imposing rules that restricted merchants' ability to "surcharge or refuse higher cost Visa and Mastercard credit cards."

It's worth noting that Visa, Mastercard and the banks involved have not admitted to any wrongdoing or liability, but they have agreed to settle.

The hefty settlement and the plan for the distribution of the money has now been approved in courts in B.C., Alberta, Saskatchewan, Ontario and Quebec.

This means, according to the law firms involved, "anyone who accepted Visa or Mastercard credit cards in Canada between March 23, 2001 and September 2, 2021 is eligible to claim settlement benefits."

More specifically, it applies to businesses or individuals acting as a business who accepted Visa or Mastercard credit card payments for goods or services between the mentioned dates.

If this sounds like you, you could qualify for your share of the multi-million dollar class action.

Small merchants who have an annual average revenue of under $5 million aren't even required to add supporting documents to their claim.

Undocumented claims will be paid $30 for each applicable year between 2001 and 2021, up to a maximum of $600.

Those making between $5 million and $20 million annually can get $250 for each year they're eligible, although supporting documentation will be required.

Merchants who qualify for the compensation can file a claim online on or before September 30, 2022.

This article's cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.

Helena Hanson
Senior Editor
Helena Hanson is a Senior Editor for Narcity Media, leading the Travel and Money teams. She previously lived in Ottawa, but is now based in the U.K.