States Trying to Prevent Stores from Going Cashless
However, new legislation may keep those visions from becoming a reality.
The New Jersey Legislature and the Philadelphia City Council have already passed bills that put a ban on cashless stores, The New York Times reports. Furthermore, Washington state, New York City, Chicago and San Francisco are exploring similar legislation to preserve the acceptance of cash payments.
Massachusetts has a longstanding law from 1978 that says, “No retail establishment offering goods and services for sale shall discriminate against a cash buyer by requiring the use of credit…All such retail establishments must accept legal tender when offered as payment.”
The New Jersey bill includes up to a $2,500 fine for the first offense if a retailer is caught not accepting cash for payment. The second offense carries a fine of $5,000.
Despite the prevalence of debit cards, credit cards and digital payments, 73% of Americans still use cash on a regular basis. Some keep cash on hand as a backup payment option, in case their card gets lost or the transaction gets declined. Others worry about payment card security and the vulnerability of digital payments.