Expediting Credit Card Reforms, H.R. 3639
Since my credit card reform bill was signed into law by President Obama in May, there have been widespread media reports and many complaints from our constituents that credit card companies are changing rates and terms in an effort to get in “under the wire” before the new law goes into effect in February, 2010.
The abuses by some in the industry which led Congress to pass my original legislation seem to have only increased since the bill’s signing. In fact, The Pew Charitable Trust reports that interest rates have spiked this year by an average of 20% on credit cards representing more than 91% of the $864 billion in outstanding credit card balances. On September 24, 2009, Chairman Frank and I introduced the “Expedited CARD Reform for Consumers Act of 2009,” H.R. 3639, for exactly that reason: because too many card companies have been using this changeover period—the period they pressed for—in a way that betrays the confidence of their customers. H.R. 3639 would move up the effective date of the remaining provisions of the Credit Card Act to December 1, 2009 from February and August 2010. Moving the effective date of my reforms to December 1st—as the holiday shopping season hits high gear—is both warranted and wise.
On November 4, 2009, the House of Representatives passed my bill by 331-92 and sent the legislation to the Senate.
Bill Text and Cosponsors
Bill Summary and Background Information
10/07/09 - Implementation Dates