Comdata agrees to settle $100 million class action lawsuit over fleet cards

By Clarissa Hawes, Land Line staff writer | 1/22/2014

Comdata Inc., along with its parent company, Ceridian Corp., has agreed to a one-time $100 million cash payment to settle a nearly seven-year class action lawsuit filed by independent truck stop operators. The independent truck stop operators claimed Comdata “engaged in anticompetitive conduct” over its trucker fleet cards.

As many as 4,000 independent truck stop operators were part of the class action lawsuit, originally filed in March 2007.

Under the terms of the memorandum of understanding, which still must be finalized and approved by the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, Comdata will pay $100 million as part of a $130 million global settlement.

Other named defendants named in the complaint, including TravelCenters of America, Pilot Travel Centers LLC, Petro Stopping Centers LP, and Love’s Travel Stops and Country Stores Inc. will pay the remaining $30 million as part of the settlement.

“We are very pleased to have reached an agreement that directly addresses merchant issues while continuing to emphasize and ensure fair treatment at the point of sale for fleets that carry the Comdata card,” said Stuart C. Harvey, Jr., chairman, chief executive officer and president of Comdata, in a statement about the settlement.

According to the agreement reached on Jan. 21, Comdata has also agreed to provide “certain prospective relief with respect to specific provisions in its merchant agreements.”

Independent truck stop operators allege in the complaint filed in 2007 that Comdata engaged in “anticompetitive conduct” in its Trucker Fleet Card and Trucker Fleet POS (Point-of-sale) systems market. They allege Comdata imposed contractual terms in agreements with certain truck stop chains “whereby the chains agreed not to accept fleet cards from Comdata’s rivals, thereby impairing Comdata’s rivals and maintaining and enhancing Comdata’s monopoly power.”

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