What is the Credit Card Class Action Settlement and what does it mean to your business?
How Much You'll Receive
CFIB Takes On The Credit Card Industry
FAQ - How do I claim my money?
When can I expect to receive my claim payout?
After the claim portal closes on September 30, 2022, the administrators will evaluate the number of claims before paying out claimants before the end of 2022.
My business is now closed, am I still eligible?
Yes, if you collected credit card payments between March 23, 2001, and September 2, 2021, you will be eligible to claim money from the settlement.
What is the cost of submitting a claim to the settlement? Do I need a third-party provider?
There is no cost to submitting a claim to the settlement. The process is simple and requires no documentation for small businesses. Some third-party providers may offer to submit your claim on your behalf for a fee.
What is the deadline to submit a claim to the settlement?
Merchants will have until September 30th, 2022 to submit a claim through the Online Claim Portal or postmarked mail.
You cannot submit a claim after the deadline. Any questions or concerns about the deadline can be directed to the Claims Administrator.
Can I appeal if my claim is rejected?
No, undocumented claims cannot be appealed. An appeal process only exists for medium and large businesses who decide to submit a documented claim. These must be sent to an arbitrator within 30 days of a Decision Notice and require a $150 filing fee.
How do I report the settlement money in my taxes?
According to the Canada Revenue Agency, this settlement money should be treated as income and is subject to tax.
Who do I contact for issues or complaints with my claim?
As of May 30th, when the portal opens, you can contact the Claims administrator who will be able to assist you in filing a claim form at no cost. Until May 30th, you can:
- Register to stay informed and receive direct notice of any important developments, including when to make a claim
- Email any questions to the lawyers
How can I learn more about the lawsuit?
The Credit Card Class Actions Settlements have a website with more information.
FAQ - What is Surcharging and how do I start?
How does the class action settlement tie into surcharging?
In the settlement of the lawsuit, credit card networks, such as Visa and Mastercard, agreed to allow merchants to pass on their added fees to customers. This option will become available October 6, 2022.
This changes the contract rules between the credit card networks and the merchants. Should you operate in Quebec, you will still not be able to surcharge as the provincial Consumer Protection Act does not allow it.
What is surcharging?
A payment card surcharge is an additional fee that a merchant can choose to charge a consumer’s bill when they pay with a credit card at the point of sale.
Can I charge a fee on Interac payments?
Yes. The ability to add a fee to Interac debit card transactions has been and continues to be available to merchants.
If your business operates in Quebec, this will not be available to you, as the provincial Consumer Protection Act does not allow it.
Is a surcharge the same as a convenience fee?
No, a surcharge is different from a convenience fee.
A surcharge is any fee added to a transaction for using a credit card.
A convenience fee is a fee that merchants may impose on all transactions no matter the method of payment. These can include debit card transactions (Interac).
If a merchant is eligible to surcharge and impose a convenience fee, they cannot add both on the same transaction.
Can I surcharge my clients today?
No, Visa and Mastercard do not allow you to surcharge your clients today, but this will change October 6, 2022. Each credit card network (e.g., Visa and Mastercard) will open a registration process for Merchants to identify their intent to surcharge and agree to disclosure agreements (such as a minimum of 30 days’ notice to clients) before starting to surcharge customers.
If your business operates in Quebec, surcharging will not be available to you, as the provincial Consumer Protection Act does not allow it.
Which credit cards will I be able to surcharge?
Merchants can pick and choose which credit card brands or products they would like to surcharge to a maximum of 2.4%. It will be your decision. You may decide to only surcharge premium cards that charge your business higher fees.