Thursday, February 16, 2012
Credit Card Debt
Back several years ago I opened up a credit card with Citibank. The interest rate was 9% APR which was really good. Especially because I was only 19 or 20 at the time. I am now 26 going on 27. I have never made a late payment with this company but all of a sudden they decided to raise my APR to 16.99%. Then without having ANY verifiable income of mine they kept raising my credit limit to over 14K. I never got my bill up that high but it got high enough. I decided to close out all my credit cards and was planning on filing bankruptcy because of the debt with that card and my American Express card. Keep in mind NONE of these creditors asked me for verifiable income. So I called up Citibank and American Express to let them know of the situation and to close out the cards. I called Citibank and the customer service rep was very pleasant to me and understood the situation and she closed out my card. I called American Express and got some very rude customer service rep who's attitude was that I was another complete deadbeat. Keep in mind I have NEVER stopped paying on these cards. I decided instead of filing bankruptcy I was going to continue to make the minimum payments. Its not because I would qualify for bankruptcy but because I have great credit and I do not want to mess it up. The woman on the phone with American Express decided to try and probe me for information. Asking me who my current employer was and how much I made to see if it comes to that they can sue me and garnish my wages. Once I told her how much I made in a year she shut up because she knew she can't do anything. The wage garnishment laws in this state is 50 times the minimum wage which is $7.25 an hour. Therefore the first $362.50 would be exempt from my weekly paycheck. Since I was only part time at my job I didn't make that in a week. Also, the bank account exemption in this state is $8,000. This means that the first $8,000 in your bank account is exempt from being frozen. Now I know very few people who have that in their bank accounts and I am not one of them. I am still making the minimum payments on my credit cards. These companies have successfully got what they wanted which is me getting into debt and struggling to make the payment every month. I know I have said this a couple times before but they didn't ask me for ANY verifiable income. All they asked in the beginning was the household income. Since I was living at my parents house and going to college at the time I put down what both of them made. That doesn't mean that they are responsible for paying the bill. Credit card companies are committing fraud and getting people into a mess load of trouble. I will not get another credit card again. I must say that I would rather deal with Citibank then American Express. American Express is ran by a bunch of self centered a**holes that could care less about you and that will drag you into court. If I need to stop paying my bills American Express will be the first one I stop paying. This is because of their attitudes towards people.