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Matthew Sapaula on Garrard McClendon LIVE: What the New Credit Card Laws Mean to You

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Tonight on the Garrard McClendon LIVE show, I will share what the new credit card laws mean to you on Chicago’s CLTV broadcasting 6pm & 9:30pm CST.  President Obama signed the Credit Card Act of 2009 into law May 22, 2009 where a majority of these laws take effect beginning February 22, 2010.

Here are some of my favorite ones which will help immediately impact many consumers, extracted from CreditCard.com:

Opt-Out When Credit Card Terms Change: Consumers now have the right to opt out of — or reject — certain significant changes in terms on their accounts. Opting out means cardholders agree to close their accounts and pay off the balance under the old terms. They have at least five years to pay the balance.

Credit Card Restrictions to Anyone Under 21 Credit card issuers will be banned from issuing credit cards to anyone under 21, unless they have adult co-signers on the accounts or can show proof they have enough income to repay the card debt. Credit card companies must stay at least 1,000 feet from college campuses if they are offering free pizza or other gifts to entice students to apply for credit cards.

Clear Deadlines for Due Dates: Credit card issuers would no longer be able to set early morning deadlines for payments. Cut-off times set before 5 p.m. on the payment due dates would be illegal under the new credit card law. Payments due at those times or on weekends, holidays or when the card issuer is closed for business will not be subject to late fees.

Over-Limit Charges Consumers Optional: Consumers must “opt in” to over-limit fees. Those who opt out would have their transactions rejected if they exceed their credit limits, thus avoiding over-limit fees. Fees charged for going over the limit must be reasonable.

Disclose Danger of Making Minimum payments: Credit card issuers must disclose to cardholders the consequences of making only minimum payments each month, namely how long it would take to pay off the entire balance if users only made the minimum monthly payment. Issuers must also provide information on how much users must pay each month if they want to pay off their balances in 36 months, including the amount of interest.

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Here’s PART II on the Garrard McClendon LIVE show:

Here’s Part III on the Garrard McClendon LIVE show:

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