H.R. 5546 (110th): Credit Card Fair Fee Act of 2008

Introduced:
Mar 06, 2008 (110th Congress, 2007–2009)
Status:
Died (Reported by Committee)
Sponsor
John Conyers Jr.
Representative for Michigan's 14th congressional district
Party
Democrat
Text
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Last Updated
Oct 03, 2008
Length
14 pages
Related Bills
H.R. 2695 (111th) was a re-introduction of this bill in a later Congress.

Referred to Committee
Last Action: Jun 04, 2009

S. 3086 (Related)
Credit Card Fair Fee Act of 2008

Referred to Committee
Last Action: Jun 05, 2008

 
Status

This bill was introduced on July 16, 2008, in a previous session of Congress, but was not enacted.

Progress
Introduced Mar 06, 2008
Referred to Committee Mar 06, 2008
Reported by Committee Jul 16, 2008
 
Full Title

To amend the antitrust laws to ensure competitive market-based rates and terms for merchants' access to electronic payment systems.

Summary

No summaries available.

Cosponsors
45 cosponsors (27D, 18R) (show)
Committees

House Judiciary

The committee chair determines whether a bill will move past the committee stage.

 
Primary Source

THOMAS.gov (The Library of Congress)

GovTrack gets most information from THOMAS, which is updated generally one day after events occur. Activity since the last update may not be reflected here. Data comes via the congress project.

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Notes

H.R. stands for House of Representatives bill.

A bill must be passed by both the House and Senate in identical form and then be signed by the president to become law.

The bill’s title was written by its sponsor.

GovTrack’s Bill Summary

We don’t have a summary available yet.

Library of Congress Summary

The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress.


10/3/2008--Reported to House amended.
Credit Card Fair Fee Act of 2008 -
Section 2 -
Sets forth a limited antitrust immunity to providers of covered electronic payment systems and merchants for negotiation of access rates and terms. Authorizes providers of a single covered electronic payment system (e.g. Visa or Mastercharge credit cards) and merchants to jointly negotiate and agree upon rates and terms for access to such system.
Authorizes such providers to jointly determine the proportionate division among themselves of paid access fees.
Denies such immunity during any period in which such a provider or merchant is engaged in any unlawful boycott.
Requires the rates and terms of a voluntarily negotiated access agreement to be the same for all merchants and participating providers, regardless of their respective category or volume of transactions.
Requires the negotiating parties to file with the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice a schedule for negotiations within one month following enactment of this Act. Directs the Antitrust Division to issue such a schedule, and inform the negotiating parties, if they fail to file a schedule before the deadline.
Requires issuers, acquirers, owners, and merchants to make specified disclosures regarding itemized costs and access agreements.
Requires a representative of the Antitrust Division to attend all negotiation sessions conducted under the authority of this Act.
Requires the negotiating parties to file jointly with the Antitrust Division any voluntarily negotiated access agreement that affects any market in the United States or elsewhere, including the various components of the interchange fee, and a description of how access fees that merchants pay are allocated among financial institutions and how they are spent.
Directs the Antitrust Division to report to certain congressional committees on: (1) the negotiations conducted under this Act during the first six months after its enactment; and (2) if a voluntarily negotiated agreement is reached, whether such access rates and terms will have an adverse effect on competition, and how such rates compare with access rates and terms in current use in other countries.
Section 3 -
Declares that nothing in this Act shall limit the ability of acquirers or issuers that are regulated by the National Credit Union Administration or that, together with affiliates, have assets of less than $1 billion, to opt out of negotiations under this Act.
Section 4 -
Requires agreements reached pursuant to the limited antitrust immunity under this Act to provide that: (1) when any fees that a merchant is charged for access to a covered electronic payment system are reduced, the merchant shall pass the benefits on to customers or employees; and (2) when any fees that a financial institution collects for access to a covered electronic payment system are increased, the institution shall pass those benefits on to its customers or employees.

House Republican Conference Summary

The summary below was written by the House Republican Conference, which is the caucus of Republicans in the House of Representatives.


No summary available.

House Democratic Caucus Summary

The House Democratic Caucus does not provide summaries of bills.

So, yes, we display the House Republican Conference’s summaries when available even if we do not have a Democratic summary available. That’s because we feel it is better to give you as much information as possible, even if we cannot provide every viewpoint.

We’ll be looking for a source of summaries from the other side in the meanwhile.

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