Consumer Protection Topics - How to Choose and Use a Credit Card
How to Choose and Use a Credit Card
Choosing a Credit Card
You have probably gotten your share of pre-approved credit card offers in the mail. Before you accept that latest offer; make sure you shop around to get the best deal. In order to find the best card for you, you should decide what’s important to you and what fits your needs depending on how you plan to use the card.
- Credit, Debit, and Charge Cards (www.ftc.gov)
- Know Before You Owe: Credit cards (www.consumerfinance.gov)
- Protecting Against Credit Card Fraud (www.ftc.gov)
- The Lowdown on So-called Gold, Platinum, and Pre-approved Credit Cards (www.ftc.gov)
Problems with Credit Card Bills
When you get your card in the mail, you also get the Cardmember Agreement. It’s important that you understand the terms outlined in this document, as it is your contract with the company. If you cannot find the agreement, contact your credit card company for a copy. If you have additional questions, you may contact the FDIC at 1-877-275-3342; ask for the Consumer Affairs branch.
You made a payment, but it's not showing up on your credit card statement or your bill is wrong and you need to tell someone. What do you do? File what is called a billing dispute.
- Disputing Credit Card Charges (www.ftc.gov)
Your statement got charged additional finance charges even though you paid your previous balance in full – perhaps the terms of your card aren’t what you realized. Check out:
- Do You Have a Complaint About a Bank? Here's How to Get Started (FDIC Consumer News)
- Be in Charge of Your Credit Cards: Our Latest Tips for Choosing and Using Them (FDIC Consumer News)
Your credit cards are maxed out and you need help. Where can you go?
If you do not pay your account on time or you go over your designated credit limit, the bank may charge you a fee. However, information about these fees must be included in your Cardmember Agreement. If you can not find the agreement, contact your credit card company for a copy. If you have additional questions after reading the Agreement, you may contact the FDIC Consumer Affairs branch at 1-877-275-3342.
The credit card company may take action on your account based on the overall credit history on which the credit score is based. This may include lowering your credit limit, closing your account or suspending your charging privileges based on your credit score even if you have paid your account with them as agreed. If you have questions regarding what is happening with your account, contact your financial institution. For more information, visit:
Finding Bank Information
If you're not sure which federal agency regulates your bank, call your bank or visit:
If you want to file a complaint with your regulator: