As of Sunday, 40 states in the U.S. will now charge merchants and retailers a “checkout” surcharge fee of 4% on credit card transactions. The fees are a result of the $7.25 billion settlement last June between credit card issuers and merchants. Part of the settlement stated that credit card issuers would reduce merchant’s fees for eight months. Now that the agreement has expired, credit card issuers are charging merchants a higher percentage. As a result, some merchants are charging consumers between 1.5 and 4 percent of the total purchase on all credit card transactions in order to cover the increase on credit card processing costs.
Another part of the settlement allows merchants and retailers to charge tax on its customers. According to the National Retail Federation, the vast majority of retailers do not want to surcharge consumers. Many of them have joined a petition in favor of consumers’ interests. The petition claims that charging taxes would punish the consumers, rather than the credit card companies for their wrongdoings.
It is still illegal to charge the fee in the following ten states: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Kansas, Maine, Massachusetts, New York, Oklahoma and Texas.
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