A New Era for Credit Cards
On Friday, May 22, President Obama signed the Credit CARD Act into law. You can watch the signing ceremony below. The President recounted some stories of consumers hard hit by credit card tricks and traps, and discussed the reforms this bill will create.
To honor her efforts to regulate the credit card industry – particularly her efforts to protect young people from the debt trap which can have tragic consequences – AFFIL Board member Janne O’Donnell was invited to the signing ceremony. See her pictured with the President at right.
At AFFIL we’ve been working on credit card reform since the campaign launched back in March 2007. We’ve heard countless stories from our members about the ways companies have raised their interest rates for no reason and imposed bogus fees just to make profits.
We worked to publicize their stories and shed some light on these tactics, and to expose the credit card industry from the inside out by sharing the stories of Cate Colombo and other former industry insiders. Last summer, AFFIL members sent over 10,000 comments about credit cards to the Federal Reserve Board, telling them that credit card tricks and traps have got to go. And AFFIL members have barraged Congress with the same message.
All this work paid off! It’s wonderful to think that once the law goes into effect in February, credit card lenders won’t be able to raise your interest rate on old balances “at any time for any reason,” and they won’t be able to hand out credit cards to college students like candy. They won’t be able to charge so many outrageous and expensive fees, and they’ll have to mail you your bill in a timely manner and apply your payments fairly. All of this will save Americans lots of money at this crucial moment when our national resources should be spent productively, rather than to line the pockets of credit card executives.