The holiday season is here once more. The lawyers at Dougherty Leventhal & Price wish to remind you that some of the best things in life are not things at all. Celebrate your holidays bys pending time with your loved ones and be very cautious regarding the use of credit cards to purchase items which you cannot afford.
Did you know that 92% of Americans carry 5 to 6 credit cards in their wallets? Did you know that 55% of Americans have 7 to 8 credit cards in their wallets? 20% of credit card users are â€œmaxed outâ€. It takes 22 years to pay off a debt of $1,000.00 if you only make the minimum payments.
If the above statistics were not enough to ruin your holiday cheer, the Federal Government has passed the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005. This new law allows banks to change the minimum 2% monthly payment on existing credit card debt to 4%. The payoff period is now 10 years instead of 20 years. For example, the average American carries credit card debt equating to $8,652.00. At a 2 % minimum payment, the monthly payment was $432.60. Now, at 4%, the minimum monthly could equate to $865.20 per month. This is not a gift you want to find under your Christmas tree.
So enjoy this Holiday Season but remember to only spend within your means so that you are not negatively affected by the new credit card laws.
Brian G. Price, Esquire