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The growing problem of credit card junk fees

No one questions that credit card companies are moneymaking masters. They promote a product where desired possessions are but a swipe away. However, they are not as upfront about the costs associated with those swipes.

The Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure (CARD) Act of 2009 was enacted to protect consumers from hidden and unreasonable charges. Fast-forward eight years. A pro-business presidential administration has taken control, promoting an agenda of de-regulation.

Many financial industry professionals see a resurgence of those fees, many of which never really went away.

What has been referred to as institutionalized and sanctioned fraud could represent the first step towards consumers filing bankruptcy. More credit card companies are seemingly setting up their customers to fall further into debt by continuing to charge fees for services that include:

  • Over the limit balances
  • Balance transfers
  • Foreign currency conversion
  • Cash advances
  • Reward redemptions
  • Card replacements
  • Duplicate statements
  • Account closures

Commonly referred to as “junk fees,” the credit card companies pay nothing to provide these chargeable services. Their motivation is pure profit. They pass on these so-called costs to consumers for the simplest of reasons.

They can.

Charging anywhere from $1 to $12 may not seem to be a significant amount of money for one customer. However, spreading out the fees over all credit card users is a key revenue source that generates hundreds of millions of dollars for credit card companies.

If you are looking for someone to help you avoid these fees before your balance gets beyond your control, step in front of the mirror. It is not what you are looking for, but what you are not looking by reading every credit card statement.

Even if charges have already been assessed, dispute the costs or threaten to cancel your card. Banks know that they lose nothing by wiping junk fees off your credit card balance.

Fees and interest on multiple credit cards can add up fast. You may reach the point where bankruptcy is your only option. Instead of addressing a more severe problem on your own, secure the services of a skilled and experienced bankruptcy attorney.

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