I have been a Chase customer for 3 or 4 years now. I started with the 0% introduction APR, and then went to 12%. My limit is $5800, and I put my tuition on the card so I have a balance of $5,000. I have ALWAYS paid on time, and most of the time pay up to $1,000 a month. However I lost my job in April, and now have a new one but am still catching up and can’t afford to pay more than the minimum which used to be $150. I had the protection program, and called in April asking to activate it and called the other number and was supposed to have papers mailed to me to fill out. They said it would take 90 days to process.
Well it’s been 3 months and still I have no papers, and they increased my APR to 29.99%!!!!! Now I have to pay $600 a month just so that I don’t go over the limit. Needless to say I cannot afford that, and am not going to waste the $150 I can pay just for it to go to nothing and continue getting fees and other charges. They won’t work with me at all, and called to say that my account was cancelled and that they were not going to help me even though I have the protection program.
Well let’s look at what could have been different. If you did not have a savings account or emergency fund to fall back on then sending Chase $1,000 a month but leaving yourself dry is not the best approach. If you had made the minimum payment, built up your savings and then when you were out of work you could have covered the payment.
If you call a creditor in the future for a similar situation and the papers don’t arrive in a few days, call them back and nag them till they arrive. Don’t just wait for them. Time is not your friend in times like this.
I doubt that Chase is going to go back and process your claim. While you were out of work, you are not now. Additionally, many of those credit protection plans have holding periods where you need to be out of work for X number of days before they begin coverage.
It sounds like you might also have been nabbed by the recent Chase policy of raising interest rates and minimum payments to 5% of the outstanding balance.
The best thing to try at this point is to call Chase customer service and ask if they have a special payment program you can get on to help you get caught up. But since your account was cancelled, they just don’t give a damn anymore.
I think your only shot, to avoid bankruptcy is going to be to enter a debt management program to see if your interest rate can be reduced. Click on the link and contact a debt management company to you can see if you can afford the payment the debt management group states.