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Billing disputes top credit card users' complaints

Survey shows interest rates, fraud and credit reports also among consumers' top concerns. Plus: How to file a complaint.

By Jan 16, 2014 1:02PM

This post comes from Bob Sullivan at partner site on MSN MoneyBilling disputes, interest rate issues and fraud concerns are the most frequent complaints filed by credit card users, according to a report issued this week by the Public Interest Research Group. The consumer advocacy organization examined all 175,000 complaints filed with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau since it began taking complaints in 2011, including 29,000 filed against credit card issuers, to determine the ranking.

Distraught man with credit cards © Hill Street Studios, Getty ImagesThe group also found that consumers in the Northeast were the most frequent complainers. In fact, when ranked by complaints per 100,000 residents, the top five complaint states were, in order: Washington, D.C., Delaware, Maryland, New York and New Jersey.

In all, 4,138 consumers said they had a billing dispute with a credit card company, representing 16 percent of all credit card-related complaints. Billing disputes far outpaced all other categories. The second-highest issue -- interest rate concerns -- attracted roughly half as many. Fraud and credit reporting problems were roughly equal, while late fees and collections issues rounded out the top 10. Complaints about rewards programs or other fees ranked near the bottom, attracting only about 600 complaints each.

The report was issued as part of an ongoing series that examines the public database published by the CFPB, which now accepts complaints on nearly every topic related to consumers and money. So far, mortgage issuers have attracted the most complaints. Credit card issuers have attracted the second-most complaints, but at roughly one-third the number of mortgage disputes.

The report also reveals that in 7,300 of the 29,000 complaints filed against credit card companies, consumers received some kind of monetary relief from the bank, and an additional 2,400 were granted "non-monetary relief," such as changing account terms or correcting reports filed with credit bureaus

“The CFPB is empowering consumers to demand accountability from their credit card companies,” said Laura Murray, Consumer Associate for U.S. PIRG Education Fund. “Finally, consumers ripped off by junky credit card add-ons or unfair billing disputes have somewhere to turn.”

Complaints can be filed with the CFPB at its website.

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Jan 16, 2014 2:14PM
Billing disputes ARE NOT usually cc company errors.
Jan 16, 2014 2:40PM
someone   Key word "usually " The article references issuers
Jan 16, 2014 1:54PM
They do as they please and keep getting away with it. What they don't get away with, they make so much profit from it doesn't mater. What they need is a BIG fine.
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