On June 30, 2016, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals (Second Circuit) struck down a class action settlement (Settlement) in the case In re Payment Card Interchange Fee and Merchant Discount Antitrust Litigation
(Visa/MasterCard Litigation). Although the Settlement would have resolved whether Visa, MasterCard and various other financial institutions violated antitrust laws by establishing and enforcing practices that charged merchants excessive fees for accepting Visa- and MasterCard-branded credit and debit cards while also limiting merchants’ ability to steer customers toward other forms of payment, the Second Circuit objected to the Settlement for failure to adequately represent the interests of disparate classes of plaintiffs in violation of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and the Due Process Clause. In a guest article, Darius J. Goldman and Cristina E. Bautista, partner and associate, respectively, at Katten, provide an overview of the reasoning behind the Second Circuit’s rejection of the Settlement and analyze issues that claims traders investing in the Visa/MasterCard Litigation should consider. For Goldman’s prior article on the subject, see “What Hedge Fund Claim Traders Need to Know About the Visa/MasterCard Settlement
” (Jun. 25, 2015). For additional insight from Katten partners, see “Insurance Products Provide Tax-Efficient Means for Investors to Access Hedge Funds
” (Feb. 25, 2016); “Going Private: Mechanical Considerations When Closing a Hedge Fund to Outside Investors (Part Three of Three)
” (Feb. 4, 2016); and “Katten Forum Identifies Best Practices for Hedge Fund Managers Regarding Best Execution, Soft Dollars, Principal Trades, Agency Cross Trades, Cross Trades and Trade Errors
” (Mar. 13, 2014).