Barbara Anthony, Undersecretary of the Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation
Starting tomorrow, you’ll have 21 days to pay your credit card bill, and at least 45 days advance notice if your credit card company is changed your interest rate, the required minimum payment, or increasing fees.
The changes are the first in a series of reforms signed into law by President Obama earlier this year. Other changes will go into effect in February.
These first changes are important ones for consumers. In recent months, in the run-up to the new rules, credit card companies have been making changes to accounts. Many cardholders, for example, have seen immediate increases in their minimum payments. The new rules give cardholders the option of rejecting the changes, and paying off the remaining balance and not using the card any longer.
There are, however, some things consumers should be aware of. New fees are only required to be disclosed before they are imposed. If a low-rate, or zero-percent rate is about to expire, no notice is required if the new rate was originally disclosed. No notice is required if a credit limit is lowered.
These changes are good first steps toward addressing some of the practices of the credit card industry that consumers have complained about, and help many cardholders who were hit hard before these rules were put in place.
Gift Card Tips posted on Nov 23
Have you ever received a gift card as a present? Do you know what fees are associated with that card? Do you know when it expires? Do you know where to report if you have a problem? Many consumers buy gift cards for others, …Continue Reading Gift Card Tips
More than 6,600 Mass. consumers to receive refunds in mortgage lending settlement posted on Nov 20
The Massachusetts Division of Banks and 49 other state mortgage regulatory agencies have executed a Settlement Agreement and Consent Order with Prospect Mortgage, LLC. The California-based mortgage company is licensed in Massachusetts and wholly owned by Sterling Partners, a private equity firm. A multi-state examination …Continue Reading More than 6,600 Mass. consumers to receive refunds in mortgage lending settlement
Department of Public Utilities phone scam circulating in MA posted on Nov 19
The Office of Consumer Affairs & Business Regulation along with The Department of Public Utilities would like to inform consumers of a phone scam that is affecting Massachusetts residents. Residents are receiving calls from a business that is claiming to be a solar developer, …Continue Reading Department of Public Utilities phone scam circulating in MA