Merchants’ Rights

Business owners in Florida and merchants in a variety of industries that use credit card processors have a legal obligation in today’s internet-based economy to comply with PCI DSS national standards. Failure to comply has resulted in assessments by credit card companies and card processor companies. The credit card processing companies first issue an Account Data Compromise Recovery (ADCR) Report and then proceed to withdraw funds from merchants’ accounts in order to cover “anticipated” fraudulent charges.


Merchants, however, have rights. Florida protects merchants from deceptive and unfair trade practices pursuant to Florida’s FDUTPA statute and from Conversion of funds and Civil Theft. Moreover, withdrawing reserves for potential fraudulent credit card charges amount to an impermissible pre-suit Writ of Garnishment without due process of law unless very strict requirements have been met. Merchants are also protected from overcharges, deceptive methods of accounting and illegal charges.


Attorney Roberto Villasante has considerable experience in this area of litigation. In one of his current cases, a regional Hispanic supermarket, Food Star, is taking on the payment card industry’s flawed system for securing card data by fining merchants for failing to secure their data.
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