New credit card rules will take effect in February 2010 as part of Credit Act of 2009. Credit card issuers will have greater limitations such as not being able to raise interest rates on balances that are not 60 days late. Some card fees are going away as part of this act and new rules will be in place for more disclosures by the card issuing companies. However, most credit card issuers and banks have already made plans how to overcome some of these restrictions and fees.
Watch out for new fees and increased interest rates being passed on to you in order to recover some of the lost revenue. So if you have a credit card that does not have any annual fees, you might be surprised with a new annual fee. Bank of America and Citibank are planning to start charging some customers annual fees, especially those who don’t use their cards up to certain limits.
Of course if you are 60 days late making a payment the new act allows banks to raise your interest rate and they can even withhold your reward points and charge you other fees related to these activities. Also there could be more fees for paper statements. No matter what new rules go into effect it is hard to protect the consumer. Credit card companies always find other inventive ways to recover their costs from the consumer. Expect to see some free checking accounts disappear due to these changes as well.
It makes you wonder if these new rules really are helpful!
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