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Report: Lawyers appeal dismissal of £14B class-action suit vs. Mastercard

Lawyers for Walter Merricks, former chief ombudsman at the U.K. Financial Ombudsman Service, have lodged an appeal against a tribunal ruling that dismissed a £14 billion class-action lawsuit against Mastercard Inc. over overcharging allegations, Sky News reported.

Merricks had claimed on behalf of approximately 46 million consumers that Mastercard's interchange fees, which are imposed on transactions using credit and debit cards, breached EU competition law, as consumers were paying higher prices to businesses that accepted Mastercard payments between 1992 and 2008, Sky News reported Aug. 15.

The U.K. Competition Tribunal, however, blocked the case from heading to trial in July, ruling that collective action could not ensure that affected individuals would be able to receive compensation for losses they incurred, even if illegal losses could be determined.

Mastercard has until Sept. 8 to respond to the appeal, the newswire noted. The New York-headquartered payments firm has insisted that Merricks' claim had no legal basis.