For example, Cheryl Lavenhar, owner of Knit — a shop geared to all things knitting — in Roslyn, N.Y., warns, “It’s illegal to say you don’t take a card … In serving as the medium between the parties, fraud by the merchant services processing payment can cause significant damages to the merchant, … Every payment card transaction involves: the cardholder, who uses a debit or credit card to pay for a product or service. Here are the average fees and costs for many issuers and payment networks in 2020. Card associations charge participating merchants a fee for each consumer credit card transaction and the fee varies based on card association and credit card type. ; the issuer, which provides a payment card to a cardholder and usually maintains the cardholder's account. Credit card surcharges are legal. (1) A seller or lessor in a sales or lease transaction may not impose a surcharge on the buyer or lessee for electing to use a credit card in lieu of payment by cash, check, or similar means, if the seller or lessor accepts payment by credit card. ; the merchant, which provides the product or service for a price. Historically, card association merchant rules have contained anti-steering provisions and “no surcharge” provisions. At present, merchants can pass along a charge equal to what they pay to accept the card, up to 4 percent. The Code of Conduct for the Credit and Debit Card Industry in Canada (the Code), which all payment card networks operating in Canada have adopted, sets out several rights that merchants have in relation to their contracts and their statements for payment card processing services. Most merchants operate within credit card issuer rules and are aware of what can and cannot be done, though the maze of regulations can be confusing. merchant or indirectly through agent banks or other third parties. Businesses are allowed to impose a surcharge on credit card purchases made on Visa and Mastercard, under a court settlement that took effect in January 2013. No credit card issuer may, by contract or otherwise, prohibit a merchant from offering a discount to a customer to induce the customer to pay by cash, check, or similar means, rather than by use of a credit card or its underlying account, for the purchase of goods or services. Pursuant to a settlement of the U.S. merchant class litigation, Mastercard modified certain rules and business practices to permit U.S. merchants to apply an extra checkout fee, also known as a surcharge, to customers who pay with Mastercard-branded credit cards. 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