Businesses Unlawfully Charging Credit Card Surcharge Fees on Non-Credit Card Transactions

According to consumer reports from across the country, businesses have begun unlawfully charging credit card surcharge fees on non-credit card transactions, such as those paid by cash, any type of debit card, or check. Credit card fees were instituted to help small businesses pay for the additional percentage surcharge of processing credit cards. However, now that most small businesses have found a way to work these surcharges into their product or service pricing, there is little reason for additional credit card fees on any transactions. Despite this, many businesses continue charging a “credit card surcharge” fee to their customers who pay with credit card. While in most states it is currently a business’ prerogative to charge surcharge fees on credit card transactions, in every state, it is illegal to charge credit card related fees on non-credit card transactions.

When paying with cash, debit, or check, businesses are prohibited from charging credit card surcharge fees, yet they continue to do so. Some businesses have allegedly blamed their point-of-sale (“POS”) software systems for “automatically” charging credit card-related fees on other types of transactions. However, POS software errors are no excuse for a business to pad its bottom line by assessing consumers illegal fees. In fact, most POS systems are customizable allowing the business or its POS service provider to remove or add fees, or to adjust taxes on each purchase. According to consumer complaints, these instances of unlawful credit card surcharge fees are occurring despite their illegality.

Have you been charged an unlawful credit card surcharge fee on a cash, debit, or check transaction? If so, contact our Financial Services team of attorneys today by calling (909) 345-8110 or by completing the form today.

Highly Experienced Class Action Attorneys

When a business or one of its employees or representatives wrongs its customers, a customer can bring a civil suit, called a class action, to help wronged parties recoup their losses. A class action is appropriate when a significant number of people suffer similar harm.

McCune Law Group APC has a history of aggressive class action representation that spans over 30 years. Serving the entire U.S., we have represented consumers in financial services class action litigation involving overbilling, overdraft and NSF fees, and more. One of our most notable cases involved a $203 million verdict in a class action against Wells Fargo for unfair overdraft fees imposed on its California customers. We have recovered over one billion dollars in verdicts and settlements across our practice areas.

Frequently Asked Questions:

What is a credit card surcharge fee?

A credit card surcharge fee is an additional charge that a business may impose on a customer when paying with a credit card. This fee is typically a percentage of the total transaction amount and is intended to cover the cost of processing the credit card payment.

o No, not in most states. Only two states and one U.S. territory prohibit businesses from including a surcharge on a credit card payment: Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Puerto Rico. In eight other states, anti-surcharging laws remain on the books but are unenforceable, or are limited, due to recent court decisions. These states include California, Florida, Kansas, Main, New York, Oklahoma, Texas, and Utah. But in every state, it is illegal to charge credit card surcharge fees on non-credit card transactions.

Any consumer business may charge a credit card surcharge fee on a credit-card transaction unless that business is in Connecticut, Massachusetts, or Puerto Rico. In the other forty-eight states, any business can charge a credit-card surcharge fee on a credit card transaction. Whether it is a fast-food restaurant or a plumbing service, business owners decide which additional fees to charge on transactions. But no business may charge a credit card surcharge fee on a non-credit card transaction. Check your receipt for all transactions to ensure the business you frequent is not improperly overcharging you.

How Do I Start a Case?

If you have been victimized by these unlawful credit card surcharge fees on non-credit card transactions, contact our Financial Services team today for a free consultation. We will review the details of your situation and determine if filing a case might be the next step. Here is what to expect in the process:

  1. Fill out our contact form with your information
  2. Your information will be reviewed, and you will be contacted if you might have a potential case 
  3. A member of our Financial Services team will contact you if your claim has merit as a potential class action
  4. Discuss your potential case with a member of our Financial Services team
  5. Discuss your next steps  

Contact our team of attorneys today if you have been charged an illegal credit card convenience fee on any product or service. Complete the form today!

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