The ability to process credit cards has become essential for both consumer-oriented and commercial businesses to survive and thrive in today’s business environment. Being placed in the VISA/MasterCard MATCH File system can be the kiss of death for any business relying upon credit card transactions. The MATCH File, formerly known as the Terminated Merchant List, is a directory maintained by the credit card companies of businesses in disputes with credit processing companies or who breached their contract with the processing company. If your business is in the MATCH File, it cannot switch processing companies and if you terminate the relationship with your current processing company, no other company will provide services. As the File is maintained by VISA/MasterCard nominated banks, once on the list it is extremely cumbersome to remove a business.
A business equipment distributor recently terminated its relationship with its processing company, unaware the processing company had placed it in the MATCH File because of a previous dispute which it assumed had been resolved. No processing company would process credit cards for the client, effectively shutting the doors of the business. The dire situation called for aggressive action and Eckell Sparks attorneys Murray Eckell and Pat Henigan responded by immediately filing a lawsuit seeking relief to free the client from the constraints of the MATCH File and allow the client to remain in business. The zealous representation resulted in an expedited removal of the client from the MATCH File and the reestablishment of credit processing ability, saving the business from potential catastrophe including loss of good will if not complete closure.
If you have a question regarding business credit, a credit processing agreement or credit processing issues, contact Pat Henigan at 610-565-3700.
Pat Henigan successfully represented three franchisees of a national franchise in disputes with the franchisor. The firm’s clients had expended considerable capital in purchasing the franchises and for startup costs to become operational. After operating for several years, the franchisees sought relief from obligations to pay license fees, advertising costs and other obligations contained in the franchise agreements based on claims that the franchisor was not providing the support required under the franchise agreements. The franchisor threatened termination of the agreements and enforcement of noncompetition clauses in the agreements. Enforcement of the noncompetition provisions would have forced the franchisees to cease operations resulting in considerable losses to the franchisees, both in terms of capital investment and sweat equity.
Henigan’s efforts resulted in a voiding of the franchise agreements, allowing the clients to continue operating the businesses with no restrictions other than changing the name of the business. The result preserved both the financial investment and the goodwill created through the franchisees’ efforts in operating the business.
Murray S. Eckell
Counsel in two major cases of first impression, still precedential, Redevelopment Authority of the City of Chester v. Swager, 215 A2d 136 (1974) and Lawton v. PENNDOT, 412 A2d 214 (1980).
Trial judge authoring the case of first impression, City of Chester v. PENNDOT.
Leonard A. Sloane
Prepared strategy and/or briefs for Pennsylvania Trial Lawyers Association Amicus participation in Tallman v. Aetna, 539 A. 2d 1354 (Pa. Super. 1988), (regarding underinsured stacking); Daley-Sand v. West American Insurance Company, 564 A. 2d 965, (Pa. Super. 1989) and Baith v. CNA, 564 A.2d 965 (Pa. Super. 1989) (regarding consent-to-settle in underinsured cases); English v. Assigned Claims Plan, 664 A.2d 84 (Pa. 1995); and James v. Assigned Claims Plan, 742 A.2d 1082 (regarding responsibility of the Pennsylvania Assigned Claims Plan to pay uninsured motorist benefits); Terminato v. Pennsylvania National, 645 A.2d 1287 (Pa. 1994); Titman v. Allstate Insurance Company, 647 A.2d 903, (1993) (regarding requirement that reconsideration must be requested before appeal can be taken in peer review); and Huda v. Kirk, 536 A.2d 513 (1988) (Pa.Cmwlth.) and 551 A.2d 637 (1988) (Pa. Cmwlth.) (permitting loss of consortium against Commonwealth as wrongful death damages); Dodson v. Elvey and Washington v. Baxter.