New Illinois law aims at keeping students out of credit card debt

Illinois recently became another state that is trying to protect students from the potential of amassing credit card debt.

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn has signed the Credit Card Marketing Act which makes it illegal for credit card companies to offer students free gifts. The law also requires that contracts between card companies and colleges and universities be public.

“This legislation cracks down on greedy marketing ploys aimed at getting students to sign up for a credit card while attending college,” Quinn said. “This law will put an end to the gimmicks and trickery used to entice young people into taking on more consumer debt than they can handle.”

The act would also prohibit schools from selling their students’ information to credit card companies, and would require them to provide financial education to freshmen if credit cards market their products to undergraduate students.

Connecticut also recently passed a law that limits credit card marketing on college campuses. Card companies will no longer be allowed to solicit students on campus during registration and orientation.

Nonprofit organization Consolidated Credit is urging parents to start a dialogue with their children about personal finance and wise uses of credit. To help parents get off in the right direction they can download Budgeting 101: Your Money Guide for Getting Through School. The free workbook contains several budgeting worksheets, a monthly budget analyzer, and a roundup of the best ways to save money.

Consolidated Credit is offering the guide because an estimated 60 percent of colleges and universities permit some form of on-campus credit card solicitation.

The experts at Consolidated Credit feel it’s about time that Congress adopted a measure requiring kids under the age of 21 to get a parent’s approval or demonstrate sufficient income before obtaining credit cards.

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