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Could Check-Out Fees Be Coming To Credit Card Purchases?

(Photo Credit: KDKA)

(Photo Credit: KDKA)

Jon Delano Jon Delano
Jon Delano is a familiar face on KDKA-TV, having been the station's...
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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Every time you use a credit card to make a purchase, the seller gets charged a fee by the credit card company.

But suppose the retailer charged you that same fee?

“I think that’s a little bit ridiculous,” said Alyssa Ingham of California, Pa.

“Something that’s dishonest and can’t, and can’t, go down,” noted Nick Schivley of Coraopolis.

“I think it should be the responsibility of the store to cover that fee like it always has been,” added Seamus Hutchens of South Fayette.

But under a multi-billion dollar proposed legal settlement, some merchants can begin this Sunday to charge consumers for using a credit card.

“The settlement does include Visa/Mastercard rule changes that would theoretically, and I stress theoretically, allow merchants to surcharge,” said Brian Rider, president and CEO of the Pennsylvania Retailers’ Association.

But it’s hardly a done deal.

While some retailers may do the unpopular thing and start to charge you for using a credit card, there are lots of rules that govern whether they can do that or not.

And the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Office says that they are going to watch this very carefully and make sure that nobody violates the Pennsylvania Consumer Protection Act.

While Pennsylvania is not one of the 10 states that prohibit credit card check-out fees, Senior Deputy Attorney General John Abel noted, “The Bureau of Consumer Protection will look carefully to make sure that there is clear and conspicuous advance disclosure before the point of sale of any such fees or surcharges.”

Rider told KDKA money editor Jon Delano that credit card companies are pushing this new fee.

“While there always can be exceptions, Jon, merchants in general have no intention of surcharging customers when using credit cards.,” he said.

That’s good news — because those that do are likely to lose business.

“I won’t be using that credit card at their store,” said Bob Grove of Beaver Falls.

“Stores are going to lose out,” added Rich Dibler from McKees Rocks.

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