Congress, in response to a rash of complaints against credit card companies, passed the 2009 Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act (CARD Act). The purpose of the CARD Act was to enact several new rules to protect consumers from predatory credit practices. The CARD Act offers several protections to consumers, primarily in interest charges and credit card fees. This post will go over some of the protections.
For instance, credit card issuers are prohibited from raising APRs on existing accounts within the first year of opening subject to four exceptions. First, the bank disclosed that they would raise the APR. Second, the credit card holder failed to make minimum payments within 60 days. Third, the consumer failed to adhere to a “workout” arrangement with the issuer. Finally, the APR raise is due to change one of the indexes, which is beyond the issuer’s control.
After a year passes, credit card issuers may raise APR, but only as it applies to new transactions, it cannot alter the rate applied to old transactions. The effect is that transactions on your card will be subject to two different interest rates.
If you’re struggling with credit card debt, you may want to contact a lawyer for legal advice. There are numerous ways in which you can challenge your credit card debt. An attorney can review your contract and the nature of the charges on your card to ensure that you are not being victimized by predatory credit lending practices. Your attorney can also negotiate with your credit card company on your behalf to reduce payments and provide debt relief. You don’t need to figure this out alone or ignore telephone calls; a lawyer can help you rebuild your credit and your life.