The Finance Minister’s new set of Credit Card Rules (in 2009) have passed their last hurdle and will be coming into effect slowly over the next little while. Before anyone starts popping champagne corks, this is not a sweeping set of changes (or even a maximum usury charge), but it is a nice start to the issues.
Some of the highlights of the new credit card rules are:
- An institution may not charge interest on purchases of goods or services made on a credit card during a particular billing cycle if the borrower pays the outstanding balance on the credit card in full on or before the due date.
- This means that if you do manage to pay off your credit card any month the credit card company cannot keep banging you with interest charges, interest charges must stop, good idea!
- An institution may not increase the credit limit on a borrower’s credit card without first obtaining the borrower’s express consent to do so.
- So I won’t see on my credit card bill that my credit limit has increased without me asking to have it raised first.
- Many new better rules about how collections can work, which is a good start as well.
I applaud the efforts to start regulating these modern day “Loan Sharks”, but I can’t help but think there is more that can be done, including useful things like rules about when the credit cards MUST refuse credit to someone as well.