Consumer Complaints: Bank of America raising interest rate because they want to

We've all heard the stories of credit card companies suddenly deciding to raise your interest rate. If you've made a late payment or gone over your limit, the credit card agreement allows them to immediately raise your rate. And there are other lesser-known reasons for raising your interest rate. Now it's become more common for credit card companies to have a clause in your agreement that allows them to raise your interest rate if your credit score decreases or if you have a late payment to a different credit card company.

One WalletPop reader wrote to me with this note about her increased interest rate:

I am writing because the Bank of America, where I have 5 or 6 different accounts, all in good standing, called me to tell me that my small business credit card finance rate was going to be increased to 23.99%. Not because I was ever late on a payment. Not because I went over my limit. Not even because I wasn't paying the minimum payment (I always pay more than the minimum payment). Nope. It was because I wasn't paying my balance down "fast enough".

I am small business owner, and only have the one business credit card. I asked the representative what rationale they employed to come to the conclusion that if they raise my finance rate, I will pay off this card faster. That is not even logical.

I'm glad to know that others like me have been scammed by the arbitrary practices of Banks and Congress is looking into it. HR 5244 address unfair credit card practices, and I hope everyone contacts their representatives to tell them to get on board and co-sponsor this thing and make them accountable.

This economy is so bad, my husband's overtime has dried up going on a year now, my clientele has shrunk due to the credit crunch and very limited disposable income.

I don't deny that this is completely legal under the credit card agreements. It's just a shame that when a consumer is in a position where they have a greater need for the credit, and appear to have a good history with the company, their interest rate is raised.

Do you think that credit card companies think long-term when they do these things? Do you think that eventually consumers will become wise to what Bank of America does and refuse to do business with them? I hope so. consumers need to speak by taking their business where they're appreciated and treated well.

Have you been cheated, scammed, or otherwise disappointed by a company? WalletPop wants your real life consumer complaints and scam stories Email us with your story...

Tracy L. Coenen, CPA, MBA, CFE performs fraud examinations and financial investigations for her company Sequence Inc. Forensic Accounting, and is the author of Essentials of Corporate Fraud.
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