08-13-2012 11:46 AM
Last Friday I got an email from Juniper (Barclays) asking if I had forgotten to make my payment. It raised a red flag because I knew I had made the payment so I logged in and after scouring all important stuff I discovered the had raised my interest rate from 14.9% to 23.24%. Keep in mind that the minimum payment amount also changed, it went up by 50% approx. which means they applied the new interest rate to old purchases. Here are my questions:
1. Can they. withou notifying me, just change the rate for no reason? No payments have been missed, no shenanigans going on here.
2. Can they apply a new interest rate to old purchases?
I'm kinda lost here so need some help about how best to deal with them. Thanks
08-13-2012 12:27 PM - edited 08-13-2012 12:35 PM
It sounds like something triggered a penalty APR in their system. That usually happens if you make a late payment (even by one day) or go over your credit limit. The penalty APR and what triggers it should be spelled out in your card member agreement.
If I recall correctly, under the new laws, they can apply the penalty APR to old purchases, but then they have to remove it once you've made six consecutive on-time payments. However, they can keep the penalty APR for new purchases indefinitely.
Some banks will apply a penalty APR on ALL of your accounts if you do anything to trigger it on just one account. So, if you have any other accounts with the same company, check those too.
If you didn't do anything to trigger a penalty APR, then maybe it's just a mistake in their system. You'll probably want to give them a call and see what they have to say.
08-13-2012 12:31 PM - edited 08-13-2012 12:36 PM
You absolutely sure the payment went through (not bounced) and it is on time (before 5 PM eastern time)?
Barclays can apply penalty APR the moment you missed a payment (bounced or late). It is in the term and it is permitted by federal law to apply penalty APR. Penalty APR stays on your account indefinitely unless you make 6 consecutive on time payments. Penalty APR applies to old purchases.
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