Some Retailers May Impose a Fee on Credit Card Transactions Beginning Jan. 27
January 2, 2013
The advocacy group Consumer Action is raising the red flag on "checkout fees" that some retailers may impose on credit card purchases starting on Jan. 27. Due to fears of customer backlash, most retailers are unlikely to charge such a fee, merchant trade groups assure. However, because it is a possibility, Consumer Action is informing cardholders of their options for fighting back. The group's Ruth Susswein points out that the practice is banned in 10 states. Consumers who encounter such fees should make register complaints with the retailers, which may persuade them to drop the fees. A checkout fee allows merchants to recoup the swipe fees they pay for processing credit card transactions, which are usually between 1.5 percent and 3 percent of the purchase amount. Checkout fees do not apply to debit card transactions. Visa and MasterCard have reported that they are making preparations for checkout fees.
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