A comprehensive credit card law is now in place that will help end the tricks that trap consumers in high-cost credit card debt. You can learn more about these key rights below. Click here to see when different provisions of the law go into effect.
The new credit card law includes these consumer protections:
Restricts all interest rate increases during the first year
Restricts interest rate increases on existing balances
Increases notice for rate increase on future purchases
Preserves the ability to pay off on the old terms
Requires fair application of payments
Provides sensible due dates and time to pay
Protects young consumers
Restricts issuance fees on fee harvester cards
Requires enhanced disclosures
Places limits on fees and penalty interest
Requires banks to review rate increase every six months
Establishes gift card protections
- Top 10 Credit Card Traps
- Credit Card Facts and Stats
- Credit Card Tips
- High-Cost Credit
Are you in debt with small, short-term loans?
- Identity Theft
Was your personal information stolen and used fraudulently?
- Credit Cards
Do you have a dispute with your credit card company?
- Credit Cards
Congress and regulators — as well as individuals — have an important role in curbing credit card market misbehaviors. Ensure that you have all the information you need to avoid getting trapped by debt.
- Security Freeze
Prevent the most costly and difficult to detect form of identity theft ― false new accounts opened in your name. Find out if your state offers stronger protection from identity theft.
- Coalition support letter for the Credit Cardholder Bill of Rights (HR 627) to House Financial Services Committee
H.R. 627 rests on the basic rules of fair dealing that Americans expect everyone to play by.
- Model State Clean Credit and Identity Theft Protection Act
The State Clean Credit and Identity Theft Protection Act offers specific, workable provisions that state legislatures can adopt to reduce the risk of identity theft and to give consumers tools to prevent some of the harm from identity theft. The model law offers types of protections and of these that have actually been adopted by state legislatures. This model law was prepared by CU and the State PIRGs.
- Senate approves credit card reform bill
The Senate voted 90-5 to approve sweeping credit card reform legislation
- Credit card reform bill passes House
The bill aims at stopping unfair lending practices and giving consumers better tools to manage credit
- CU applauds Obama credit card proposals
Treasury Department offers support for stronger protections as the House prepares to vote on credit card bill
- Senate panel passes bill limiting credit-card rates
The bill puts a stop to credit card practices that are misleading and abusive
- Groups urge House to approve credit card reform
The Financial Services Committee will take up the “Credit Cardholders’ Bill of Rights Act of 2009”.
- Senate panel to consider landmark credit card bill
Consumer groups urge support for bill to curb unfair credit card practices
- Bailout should include new credit card standards
CU says Treasury plan to buy securitized credit card debt should protect consumers from bad lending practices
- Statement by CU on President-elect Obama’s economic team
Their plans offer some hope that they will act quickly to get to the heart of our financial crisis.
- CU calls for new reforms to address financial crisis
New safeguards needed to stem foreclosures and protect consumers and taxpayers from deepening crisis
- House passes credit card reform bill
CU urges Congress to include credit card protections as part of any Wall Street bailout package
- Consumers Union Urges Fed to Require Banks to Roll Back Recent Unfair Credit Card Interest Rate Hikes
CU submits comments to the Fed on its last round of regulations to implement the CARD Act.
- How To Close A Credit Card
Consumerist gives solid tips on canceling a credit card without hurting your credit score
- Fed issues proposal for final CARD Act provisions
Fed finally releases the proposed rule for the final CARD Act provisions which go into effect in August 2010.
- And Now A Word From Our Winner
Guest Blogger Sean Kleefeld is the winner of the 2010 Dangers of Debt Image Contest. After getting ripped off by BoA he took action. Read more to learn how personal social networks can have great activism impact and win you a $1000.
- Winner of the Danger of Debt Contest!!
Sean Kleefeld is the Grand Prize Winner of the Dangers of Debt Image Contest!!
- Consumer Guide to Credit Cards
The Federal Reserve Board just put up a great site to help you navigage credit card offers and contracts. It also contains lots of easy to understand information about the post-CARD Act credit card marketplace.
- Tips for the new credit card marketplace
The CARD Act goes into effect on February 22nd. But you should still watch out for tricky practices. Here are some tips to help you navigate the new credit card marketplace.
- Watch Out! Here’s what’s not covered by the CARD Act
Although this law is a great step in the right direction, there are some practices that consumer will have to continue watching out for after the February 22nd effective date.
- Clearing up some misconceptions about the Credit CARD Act
Trying to summarize the 1100 page Credit Card Rule is tough. Here are some clarifications.
- Federal Reserve Board Issues New Credit Card Regulations
Federal Reserve Board Issues New Credit Card Regulations
- Tightened credit terms could hurt credit scores
In coming weeks, for instance, American Express is instituting a broad-based interest rate hike of 2 to 3 percentage points on card holders.
- Why banks are boosting credit card interest rates and fees
In recent years, banks have sharply raised interest rates and penalty fees on credit cards. As the economy tanks and banks’ mortgage-related losses balloon, some banks are stepping up such increases to boost revenue.
- A case of balance as credit card rules change
The worldwide financial crisis and increased regulatory pressure in Washington are starting to reshape the lending system in ways that are making plastic harder to get and more costly to use.
- Credit card terms takings turns for the worse
The impact of ultra-tight credit markets is hitting your credit cards, and you might not even realize it.
- Will Credit-Card Debt Be the Next Financial Crisis?
Is the credit-card debt crisis becoming the next housing-debt crisis? That prospect is raised by Robert Reich, a former secretary of labor, now a public-policy professor at Berkeley.
- The Next Crisis: Credit Card Debt
The subprime mortgage mess may be grabbing the headlines, but the rapid growth of personal debt from mortgages, credit cards and other loans is part of a far larger problem facing millions of Americans.
- Credit Card Use Surges, Risking Another Debt Crisis
Cash-strapped Americans are ringing up more and more purchases on their credit and debit cards, and there could be a steep price to pay ahead.
- Comments show credit card rules must change
If you want an idea of how angry consumers are at credit card companies, get a load of the complaints e-mailed to the Federal Reserve about efforts to prohibit unfair practices by credit card companies.
- Credit card proposal may get vote in Congress
Legislation reining in credit card practices may get vote this year as Congress returns
- Ask, and you might receive a lower credit-card rate
Pick up the phone, look at the latest credit-card offers and keep repeating this: The bank needs me more than I need it.