Do Swipe-Free Lawsuit Opt-Outs Have A Second Chance?

A group of merchants – including Visa and MasterCard – are considering letting class members who opted out of an interchange fee antitrust settlement to rejoin the $5.7 billion deal.

According to a recent Law 360 article, the merchant group released a report last week that said the group agreed that the court should sign off on a procedure and opt-in period. This option would let merchants, who had previously opted out of the settlement, opt back in.

“Defendants have not objected to a request for return of portions of the takedown payment to the extent that volume attributable to merchants that opt back in to the class would make the sum of the class exclusion takedown payments … less than the amounts previously paid,” the parties wrote in the report, according to the news source.

The news source reported that the deal resolved claims that certain credit card companies interchange fees were anti-competitive with a combination of a $6 billion settlement fund. Additionally, there were several rule changes that would allow merchants to pass future fees on to their customers through surcharges.

Originally, the deal was valued at $7.25 billion. However, after 25 percent of the class by sales volume opted out, it was reduced to $5.7 billion.

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