December 8, 2023

The Queens County Citizen

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Credit card transactions: Additional fees charged by SMEs

Credit card transactions: Additional fees charged by SMEs

Merchants may soon charge additional fees to customers who pay by credit card following a class action settlement with Visa and MasterCard, but Quebec SMEs will not be able to take advantage of the service.

Businesses have had this option since October 6 to offset costs generated by these types of transactions, but not in Quebec due to consumer protection legislation.

However, the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) wants to change these rules to make Quebec businesses more like Canadian companies.

“There is a need to modernize the Consumer Protection Act in line with today’s context,” François Vincent, Quebec vice-president at the CFIB, said in a press release Wednesday. This is a priority document that we would like to discuss with the next Minister of Justice after the formation of the new Council of Ministers.

According to him, charging these additional fees could help small traders meet the rapidly rising operating costs.

According to a recent CFIB survey, only one in five merchants plan to charge additional fees to their customers, rising to 26% if their competitors and suppliers plan to do so.

About 40% have yet to make any decisions and 15% indicate they have no intention of doing so.

“Many small business owners are frustrated with the high costs of processing credit card transactions, which can eat up 1.5% to 2.5% from each sale. This explains why 35% of small business owners encourage their customers to use other payment methods,” said CFIB National Affairs. Vice President Jasmine Gunet said.

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The survey was conducted September 1-8, 2022 with 3,914 CFIB members.

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