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Credit Cards

Where to Take Your Credit Complaint

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has opened a one-stop complaint center for all credit-card-related issues.

Fighters on the big screen, like Rocky Balboa, always have a feisty trainer to run interference for them. Now you, too, have a corner man if you get locked in a fight with your card issuer.

Until recently, if you had a complaint, you had to take your chances appealing to the credit card company itself. Now the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has opened a one-stop complaint center for all credit-card-related issues. As Ben Woolsey, of Creditcards.com, explains, “The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s sole purpose is to protect the rights of consumers and be an advocate for them.”

To register your complaint, go to CFPB’s home page. There you'll find a simple form that asks you to describe what happened and to categorize your complaint from a menu of about 30 items, such as “billing disputes” and “credit line increase/decrease.” You’ll also be asked how much money you lost (if any), when the incident occurred and what you have already done to resolve the problem.

Next, you’ll be asked to describe the outcome for your problem that you think would be fair, and for your contact information. Expect written confirmation from the CFPB, which will forward your complaint to the card issuer.

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Once you have registered your complaint, you can check its status online. If the issuer does not respond in a timely manner and resolve the complaint satisfactorily, and the CFPB receives a number of similar complaints, it will likely launch an investigation. It’s too soon to tell how well this complaint process will work, but we’ll keep you posted.