B-4 Contactless payments – Element 10 of the Credit and Debit Card Code
The Supervision and Promotion Branch (SPB) of the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC) was asked to clarify the treatment of contactless payments under element 10 of the Code of Conduct for the Credit and Debit Card Industry in Canada (the Code).
The issue raised is whether contactless payments, which include both card-based and mobile contactless payments, are considered to be a “new product or service” under element 10 of the Code.
Element 10 of the Code states that “Payment card network rules will ensure that negative option acceptance is not allowed,” and that “If payment card networks introduce new products or services, merchants shall not be obligated to accept those new products or services. Merchants must provide their express consent to accept the new products or services.”
It is SPB’s position that contactless payments, as defined in the Code, are not within the scope of element 10. Rather, merchant concerns with the acceptance of contactless payments can be addressed through element 11. Therefore, the Code does not require merchants to expressly consent to the acceptance of contactless payments.
This interpretation does not impact any other requirements under the Code for contactless payments, such as disclosure and the ability to cancel acceptance of contactless payments.
We request that you communicate this information with relevant parties, including Code and non-Code participants.
Richard Bilodeau, Director
Supervision and Promotion Branch
Financial Consumer Agency of Canada
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