Mastercard £10B class action lawsuit cleared by CAT

The UK’s Competition Appeal Tribunal (CAT) has certified a £10 billion class action lawsuit against Mastercard. It ruled that Walter Merricks can represent claims over interchange fee charges after previously rejecting the lawsuit, according to Financial Times.

CAT ruled that Merricks, former head of UK Financial Ombudsman Service, can represent the 46 million claimants in the case. Each claimant would receive approximately £300 each if the claim is successful.

The claim, which was originally launched by Merricks in 2016, is based on the European Commission’s finding in 2007 that Mastercard charged inflated card fees on consumer transactions between 1992 and 2008.

The case is being brought on behalf of all individuals over 16 who used Mastercard to purchase goods and services from UK businesses between 1992 and 2008, unless they specifically opt out of the lawsuit. The suit is set to be Britain’s biggest class action-style lawsuit.

“Mastercard has thrown everything at trying to prevent this claim going forward, but today its efforts have failed. The tribunal’s ruling heralds the start of an era of consumer-focused class actions which will help to hold big business to account in areas that really matter.” Merricks stated, according to Reuters.

Mastercard says that claims are “spurious” and stated the claim is driven by lawyers and backed by organizations “primarily focused on making money for themselves.”

Merricks did attempt to include the estates of the deceased and compound interests to the claim, which would have set the lawsuit at £15 billion, but was rejected in that regard by CAT.

“The decision today reduces the value of this spurious claim by more than 35%,” Mastercard stated.

In other recent fintech news, Fiserv announced a partnership with PayPal and Venmo. Branch also announced raising $548 million, which included a $48 million Series B led by Addition and $500 million in purchased assets from funds managed by Neuberger Berman.

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