PAYMENT AND THE LAW

October has been an eventful month for electronic payment processes used by retailers.On Oct. 4, the Supreme Court ruled that Visa and MasterCard can no longer block partner banks from issuing competitive cards like American Express and Discover, which could lead to more competition and conceivably lower rates for retailers.This week, on Oct. 28, the Check Clearing for the 21st Century Act ("Check

October has been an eventful month for electronic payment processes used by retailers.

On Oct. 4, the Supreme Court ruled that Visa and MasterCard can no longer block partner banks from issuing competitive cards like American Express and Discover, which could lead to more competition and conceivably lower rates for retailers.

This week, on Oct. 28, the Check Clearing for the 21st Century Act ("Check 21"), signed by President Bush a year ago, takes effect. The new law stat

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