More Than 50% of Consumers Unaware of New Credit CARD Act
Millions of Dollars Spent By Credit Card Industry Appear Ineffective
Results Released from The FreeScore.com Consumer Awareness Study on The Credit CARD Act (H.R. 627: Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009).
On February 22, 2010 every consumer with a credit card account will be affected when the Credit CARD Act of 2009 goes into law. But according to research conducted by FreeScore.com, a recognized authority in credit trends, credit scores, and credit reporting, less than half of U.S. consumers are aware of the impact the new law will have on them.
In a study conducted in early February with a sample of 1,000 consumers, just 40% knew that credit card companies must give a 45-day advance notice to changes in credit card rates, terms and conditions. Moreover, few were aware that the new law aims to protect credit card users from practices such as abrupt rate increases, retroactive rate increases, and double-cycle billing, a practice by which customers are charged interest even after the last monthly bill is fully paid off.
"Full awareness of the Credit CARD Act is important," says Carrie Coghill, Director of Consumer Education for FreeScore.com. "Despite the new law, consumers must still read the fine print to be fully protected."
Additional results of The FreeScore.com Consumer Awareness Study on The Credit CARD Act also revealed:
- Younger consumers are less aware of the Credit Card Act. 30% of those 18-34 were aware of the legislation, while 57% of those 55+ knew of the new law.
- 51% of men were aware of the new law vs. 45% of women
- 58% of college graduates were aware of the Act, versus 48% who have had some college, versus 33% who have a high school degree or less.
- Awareness increases with income. 59% of those whose income exceeds $75,000/year were aware, versus 38% of those that make less than $35,000/year.