The Minnesota Twins and a group of Minnesota retailers recently filed suit against Visa and MasterCard, alleging that the credit card companies broke antitrust laws by fixing swipe fees.
The suit alleges that Visa and MasterCard colluded with banks to fix interchange fees unreasonably high and to keep information on them from consumers. The complaint also alleges that the card companies prohibited retailers from incentivizing customers to use cards with lower swipe fees, Law360 reports.
“Because deciding not to accept Visa and MasterCard payment cards would sound a death knell for their businesses, plaintiffs and other merchants have been held captive by defendants’ cartels,” the complaint said, according to Law360.
The suit comes after Visa and MasterCard settled in a similar class-action case late last year, which the Twins dropped out of, along with many merchants around the country.
“Businesses like the Twins seem to think it’s time to end this anti-competitive, secretive, unfair system,” the Merchants Payment Coalition said. “Merchants around the country agree and hope perhaps some real hardball will help reform swipe fees.”
The plaintiffs have requested that the court grant them three times the damages they incurred as a result of the alleged collusion between 2004 and 2012, Law360 reports.