senate Bill S7267C
(D, WF) 0 Senate District
- In Committee
- On Floor Calendar
- Passed Senate
- Passed Assembly
- Delivered to Governor
- Signed/Vetoed by Governor
Prohibits the imposition of a surcharge by a seller in a sales transaction on a holder who uses a debit card.
TITLE OF BILL:
to amend the general business law, in relation to prohibiting the
imposition of a surcharge by a seller in a sales transaction on a holder
who uses a debit card
This legislation would prohibit merchants from imposing surcharges on
consumers who elect to pay with a debit card and would clarify that
merchants may offer discounts to induce consumers to make payments
with means other than credit cards.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
This legislation would create six subdivisions in section 518 of the
general business law, allowing merchants to offer discounts to induce
customers to make payments with means other than debit or credit cards.
Further, any franchisor or electronic payment system that collects a
fee for payments using debit cards shall reimburse all affected
merchants for the fees and fines collected and may be liable for a
civil penalty of twice the fee or fine levied.
One of the core tenets of the consumer experience is that the stated
price of an item as advertised is the actual price paid at checkout.
This fundamental consumer protection has been recognized by governing
bodies around the world, and is a core element in New York's
deceptive acts and practices statute. It is inexcusable to allow
retailers to use the lure of lower advertised prices to entice
customers and then to charge them more.
Retailers are currently prohibited from imposing surcharges on
consumers who use credit cards. This prohibition must be updated and
extended to debit cards. Electronic payment allows consumers to
conveniently, securely and responsibly manage their finances.
Surcharges and checkout fees hurt consumers and must be outlawed.
Retailers enjoy the same benefits from debit card use as they do from
credit card use. For example, lines move faster because customers
don't have to pullout their checkbook or fumble for cash. In
addition, customers spend more, and the payments are immediately
guaranteed. Bad check losses are eliminated.
Allowing retailers to surcharge would force customers to pay for the
benefits that merchants receive, shifting 100 percent of the cost of
electronic payments to consumers. In fact, surcharging could
essentially become an unearned profit center for retailers. The
benefits and savings that cards offer will be undermined if retailers
are allowed to surcharge and drive consumers to use cash and checks.
This is a new bill.
One hundred twentieth day after it shall have become a law.
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