Mr. Bill George Presents

Please Disable My OLAA Credit Card Account

In Business, Politics on May 10, 2009 at 9:00 PM

Dear American Express, CitiBank, Wells Fargo etc,

This is your Official Notification to AUTOMATICALLY DECLINE any charge I authorize that would cause my account to go OVER-LIMIT.

I know I should track the running balance on my credit card accounts and every charge I make…“to the penny,” but my day to day life is sometimes hectic and complicated and I have moments where it is either inconvenient or downright impossible to manage all my work and personal responsibilities and relationships…and the drama of my daily life.

Since you regard the crossing of my credit-limit line, “even by 1 cent”, to be such an egregious offense that you would punish me with an immediate fine and then double or triple the interest rate on my past balance, I want you to know that you have my attention and I also take this seriously.

On a Side Note: As an industry, I commend you for convincing our politicians and lawmakers that they should extend such legal “jurisdiction and punishment powers” to your industry. Most of our courts, judges and arbitrators do not posses this degree of power (which can easily financially ruin an American Family) without some sort of an administrative process. A process where the accused has an opportunity to present some facts and circumstances and have his future intentions and past behavior in the community mitigate the punishment. The “Judge, Jury and Sentencing Authority” you have over all Americans holding your credit cards is an impressive testimony to your influence and control over our politicians and government.

But I digress…I’m not sure if you have checked-in with your IT Department recently, but I wanted to let you know that you now have the technological ability to deny any charge to my account that would cause me to inadvertently commit the egregious offense of exceeding my credit-limit. Actually, I find it surprising you have not been providing this customer service option and service already since you consider this such a capital consumer offense. Hmmm…I wonder why?

Anyway, please excuse my lack of knowledge as to which Federal Law I should cite as the reference for your requirement to honor my request and I hope you will agree that it makes a lot of sense that I would choose to have you decline any charge that would cause my account to go over-limit rather than pay an additional over-limit fee and have my interest rate increased on my previous balance that we both agreed would be paid…but at a lower rate.

I do appreciate your concern that I not be embarrassed or inconvenienced at check-out with a disapproved charge but I would rather deal with that embarrassment and situation than pay you an extra $ 3,000 in interest over the next year for the $ 24 pair of pants I was trying to purchase.

Honestly, I believe Federal Law should dictate that banks require Card Holders to specifically opt-in to activate an Over-Limit Authorized Account (OLAA) and agree to the fines and the doubling and tripling of the interest rate. Quite logically and fairly…the same Federal Law would also dictate that banks cannot disqualify activation of a credit card account or terminate a credit card account solely because a Card Holder does not opt-in to an OLAA Account.

But then…who am I to be promoting such logic, common sense and fairness? As we all know, our Senators and Congressmen (and women) are always looking after our best interests and if what I just suggested made any sense whatsoever…it surely would have been done a long, long time ago.

So again, please disable my Over-Limit Authorized Account (OLAA).


Rick MacDonald


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