Credit CARD Act: Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure

Understanding how the Credit Cardholders Bill of Rights impacts you.

The Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure Act – called the Credit CARD Act for short and also known as the Credit Cardholders Bill of Rights – is a key piece of legislation that passed through Congress in 2009 following the Great Recession. It provides important revisions to the Truth in Lending Act (TILA) and other laws that govern open-end credit plans. In other words, it clarifies TILA and other laws to provide specific regulations for credit card issuers.

The information below is designed to help you understand what the Credit CARD Act says and how it protects you from unlawful practices by credit card issuers. From protections against unfair rate increases to protections for young consumers, the Credit CARD Act protects your rights against unfair account and advertising practices. If you have questions or need help addressing challenges with credit card debt, call Consolidated Credit today at or complete an online application to request a free, confidential evaluation from a certified credit counselor.

Consumer protections for rate changes, fees and account repayment

The first part of the Credit CARD Act is designed to improve the protections consumers have against unfair account changes and repayment policies. This is where the Credit CARD Act really gets its reputation as a Credit Cardholders Bill of Rights, because it guarantees the following:

Credit card disclosures required by law

In addition to the protections listed above, the Credit CARD Act also provides regulations for disclosures that must be included on your credit card statements and/or original agreement, as well as disclosures that must be maintained on the company website.

Protecting young consumers

The next part of the Credit CARD Act is intended to protect young consumers from being preyed upon by creditors and moved into credit card accounts that they can’t afford when just starting out.

Consumer protections for gift cards

This final consumer-related section of the Credit CARD Act relates to gift cards, prepaid cards and gift certificates. There’s a final section for “miscellaneous provisions” that really just summarizes different congressional and government reviews of credit and lending practices, such as a study on financial literacy and a report on emergency PIN technology.

However, the gift card section is really the last consumer-based section. It simply states:

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