Don’t get caught with dodgy deals and poor products! There’s nothing worse than thinking you and your bank have a ‘best bud’ relationship, only for them to trip you up.
As a consumer, you need strong protection when it comes to credit reporting. Why should only the financial industry be taken care of? This is where smaller consumer protection acts come in.
How Does the Fair Credit Card Act Work?
The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) helps deal with credit card companies, creditors, and financial institutions. It’s your money, and you need it kept safe and secure. When you sign up for a credit card, there are many terms and conditions. Do you always read them while a bank manager is eagerly awaiting your signature?
When signing an agreement with a credit card company, it is important to remain protected. You are given this protection through the Credit Card Act.
You may be wondering why this Act is so important, and how it applies to you. One of the benefits of The Credit Card Act: the company you’ve signed with cannot raise interest rates on your existing balances. If interest rates are due to rise on new balances, creditors are obligated to tell you at least 45 days in advance.
Even if this happens, the company cannot increase your monthly payments.
The Dodd-Frank Act
Do you recall the major recession in 2007? Of course you do! It was a terrible time for America, and hit people hard. It was following this recession that the Dodd-Frank Act (DFA) was introduced to stop creditors and other financial institutions from taking advantage of you.
How does this work?
The DFA promises that creditors and financial institutions will conduct themselves fairly and responsibly, without using your hard-earned tax dollars to bail out financial firms.
The good news is: financial companies must let us know if another recession is in sight. This wasn’t the case a few years ago, but the DFA requires it.
It also requires the institutions to be more accountable and transparent about what they are doing to protect you from crashes and economic downturns. What about those pesky, clever loopholes? They’re now closed. No longer can bankers or financial experts wiggle their way out of practicing responsible money-management using regulation-dodging techniques.
If you haven’t heard of FACTA before, get familiar in order to keep yourself empowered and in-the-know.
FACTA stands for The Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act. It tells you what your rights are if anyone steals your identity. A stolen identity is serious and can have horrendous effects on your credit score, finances, and mental health. All criminals need is your personal information, and away they go!
FACTA protects you should you become a victim of identity theft, ensuring no blemish is left on your credit report as a result.
In the event that your identity is stolen, you have the right to:
- Flag your credit reports by reporting fraudulent activity
- Receive a free copy of your current credit report
- Receive copies of all paperwork related to fraudulent activity
- Receive all information from debt collectors related to the event
- Put a block on any information related to identity theft
- Ask the businesses involved not to report the fraud to the credit reporting agencies
You’ll also be relieved to know that active duty military personnel get special care and additional rights when it comes to identity theft. Our servicemen and servicewomen deserve to be protected – especially given everything they’ve done for us!
Rest Assured, You Are Protected
Your money and identity are important, and they shouldn’t be jeopardized through carelessness or reckless behaviors. Luckily, we now have smaller acts to help protect our records.
Do you have questions? Contact our financial specialists and advisors for assistance now. Also, please let us know in the comments below if one of these smaller acts has helped you when your information was stolen or other protections were needed.