ALEXANDRIA, Va.—Visa on Friday said it will delay the EMV liability shift deadline for automated fuel dispensers (AFDs) to April 17, 2021. The network’s delay was in response to letters NACS sent on behalf of its retail members to the four global networks requesting a delay of the October deadline, given the extreme disruption to the workforce and supply chain amid the coronavirus pandemic.
“Our retailers’ top priority at this time is providing fuel and other products to the Americans who need it most and keeping its employees and customers safe and healthy. Given the significant impediments to many retailers getting AFDs and appropriate software that accept EMV payments developed, tested, certified, and installed, we respectfully request that you delay the AFD liability shift and set a new, achievable date for that transition once the current crisis has abated,” stated the letters.
Social distancing policies and “stay at home” orders have significantly impacted the workforce and had a downstream effect on the EMV migration process, with reported delays in equipment, increased lead times and lack of technician availability.
Visa initially denied the associations’ request, saying that the network was still monitoring the situation. The associations responded in a letter to Visa strongly urging the company to reassess the fuel retailers’ request for a delay and grant them an extension given the magnitude of the crisis. While the retail associations asked the network to wait to set a new deadline until the crisis passes and market forces can be reevaluated, Visa set the new liability shift date for six months after the original October 1, 2020, deadline to April 17, 2021.
“The EMV delay comes at a time when convenience stores’ main objective is keeping stores open to meet the essential needs of their customers and communities. We are glad to see Visa recognize the unequivocal economic impact coronavirus is having on businesses, and we hope the other major networks will follow suit,” stated Anna Ready Blom, NACS director of government relations.
Mastercard, American Express and Discover have not yet responded to NACS requests for a delay in the EMV liability shift deadline.