NATSO served as one of several plaintiffs in a class-action lawsuit against VISA and MasterCard (In re Payment Card Interchange Fee & Merchant Discount Antitrust Litigation). This lawsuit was brought on behalf of merchants who accepted those companies' payment cards in the United States since January 1, 2004. Over NATSO's objection, the district court approved a settlement of that class action for a cash payment and an injunction requiring VISA and MasterCard to change some of their rules for accepting their payment cards.
Many merchants -- including many NATSO members -- chose to "opt out" of the settlement.
Merchants who submitted formal requests for exclusion before the May 28, 2013, deadline still have valuable claims against VISA and MasterCard.
Plaintiffs can pursue these claims most effectively by assigning their claims to a "claims aggregator" -- a vehicle to gather, evaluate, manage, and pursue the claims that its members have against VISA and MasterCard.
If you opted-out of the settlement, NATSO recommends that you pursue your claim for cash compensation from VISA and MasterCard by assigning your claim.
By assigning your claim, you will gain the advantages of combining your claim with other merchants' claims and having your claim managed on your behalf. The entity holding the claims should:
- Be able to pursue the combined claims efficiently and economically; and
- Assess all options for pursuing the claims.
The combined claims will give the group leverage to seek the greatest recovery possible.
NATSO members are advised to assign their claim as soon as possible.
There are a number of entities that are pursuing claims on behalf of claims aggregators. These entities are represented by well-respected law firms who will work on a pure contingency basis.
NATSO members who opted out of the antitrust settlement are advised to research and examine all of their potential options. Two premier law firms that are currently representing these claims are Constantine Cannon LLP and Bernstein Litowitz Berger & Grossman LLP.
Contact information for these law firms is below:
Bernstein Litowitz Berger and Grossman
Call 212-554-1907 during normal business hours to discuss the options available to you.
NATSO members with questions should contact NATSO Vice President of Government Affairs and Legislative and Regulatory Counsel David Fialkov at 703-739-8501 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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