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Resolution To Interest Rate Increase
Posted by on
To keep this short and simple, officials at Advanta Bank Corporation increased my business credit interest rate from 7.99% to 27.18% (purchases) and 37.18% (cash advances). I have excellent credit and I have paid my monthly credit card obligations as required by Advanta Bank Corp. They (Advanta Bank Corp. officials) claimed that a written noticed was mailed to me informing me of the proposed interest rate increase and, at that time, I had the option of "opting out" and close the account thereby keeping the original interest rate (7.99%) until the balance is "paid in full."

I contacted several Advanta officials and they stated that due to several factors, they reserve the right to increase the interest rate. They (Advanta Bank Corp. officials) could not tell me which factor applied to my situation only that my interest rate was increased because I allegedly did not "opt out" in time.

I filed a written complaint with the FDIC. Within a month, I received a letter from an Advanta Bank Corp Account Specialist from the Office of the President/CEO restating that I was given a written notice to "opt out" of the credit card agreement (i. e., increased interest rate). However, as a good faith effort, the Advanta Bank Corp Account Specialist stated that has been made to have the difference in finance charges billed on my business credit card in December 2008, January 2009, and February 2009 billing statements as if "opt out" had been effective in December of 2008. This letter was forwarded to a FDIC official.

Apparently, FDIC inquired about my complaint, and action was taken by this Advanta Bank Corp official. I urge anyone else who has had this happen to them to file a complaint with the FDIC. Apparently, others have done the same and FDIC officials are aware.
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Deceptive Practice 15 Day Notice Of Rate Increase
Posted by on
SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH -- I would like to report a complaint against ADVANTA BANK CORP for deceptive practices. We own a small business and use ADVANTA revolving credit. We have never missed a payment and have always paid much more than what was due. Our FICA score has always been very good.
On June 5, 2008 I received notice of an increase of interest rate –going from 9.99% to 19.99%. The letter stated I had until June 2, 2008 to “opt out” of this rate. This notice was dated May 16, 2008, and deceptively printed on the back of 3 cash advance checks (which we did not use). I wrote Advanta to “opt out” of the new credit card terms.

On September 5, 2008 I received notice of an increase of interest rate –going from 19.99% to 29.99%. The letter stated I had until September 2, 2008 to “opt out” of this rate. This notice was not dated but once again was printed on the back of 3 cash advance checks (which we did not use). Upon receiving this notice I wrote Advanta again to “opt out” of the credit card terms.
On December 9, 2008 I received notice of an increase of interest rate –going from 29.99% to 37.18%. This letter stated I had until December 2, 2008 “opt out”. This notice was not dated and once again deceptively printed on the back of 3 cash advance checks. I had to wait 4 days to see the actual rate change (on the internet). The actual bill did not come for 7 more days. Indeed they did increase the rate and ignored my letters.

I then called Advanta to request lowering the interest rate; unfortunately Manager John said there was not anther rate available. I then questioned the timeliness of the notices. In all three rate hikes I had received the notice too late to do anything about it. They state that first of all they did not receive my letters, and continued with even if they had received my letter it would have been too late to implement, since they are only required to give a 15 day notice. I questioned the mailing date of the notices since 2 of the interest rate increases were not dated. They stated that once they are printed it usually takes several days to a week to get them processed before mailing. The 15 day notice is including the processing and the mailing is clearly not enough time to allow the consumer to respond and I believe that was their deceptive intention.


Advanta Customer Service
PO BOX 30715
Salt Lake City, UT 84130-0715

Delaware Corporate Center
One Righter Parkway
Wilmington, Delaware 19803

Advanta Corp. Headquarters
Welsh & McKean Roads
Spring House, PA 19477
Better Business Bureau-CHECK YOUR BBB LOCATION
(Chattanooga, TN)
1010 Market Street, Ste. 200
Chattanooga, TN 37402-2614
Phone: (423)266-6144
Fax: (423)267-1924
Web: http://www.chattanooga.
Ethics Officer at Advanta Corp.
Advanta Bank Corporation
Advanta Customer Service
Advanta Corp. Headquarters
Better Business Bureau Case # 15967.
Delaware Corporate Center
Utah Department of Financial Institutions

FDIC Consumer Response Center
2345 Grand Boulevard, Suite 100
Kansas City, MO 64108
(Monday - Friday 8:00 am to 8:00 pm EST)
703-812-1020 (Fax number)

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User Replies:
Anonymous on 12/24/2008:
When you opt out of a rate increase, it means that you agree to not use the card for anything any longer, and to pay off the balance at the lower rate. If you did continue to use the card, you didn't opt out. If you did not use the card, then the original rate should still be in effect.

Merry Christmas
ticked off & ripped off on 01/29/2009:
We did NOT use the card after opting out! they claim to have never received my opt out notice.
Anonymous on 01/29/2009:
ticked - Your post is excellent! Not only do CC issuers hold timely payments to garner 'late' fees and trigger usury interest, it now appears they are deliberately rigging the opt out clauses for the same purpose...improve their take. THANK YOU for your post.
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"Late" Payment
Posted by on
I have had this card for 2 years and only used it once for a balance transfer, which I have been paying off (on time) every month since. I have AutoPay set up through my bank (because Advanta does not offer this service) to ensure that payments are made on time every month. Payments are sent from my bank account on the 14th of every month, and my credit card payment is due on or about the 20th. Advanta is now claiming that my last payment was late, even though it cleared my checking account before the due date. The due date was not on a business day, and apparently they did not process my payment until the next business day. The funds were issued from my bank account prior to the due date, yet Advanta will not reverse the $39 late fee or reinstate the 2.99% interest they promised to honor until the balance transfer was paid off. They are currently charging me the "default" rate of 34.99%.

I received the statement showing the late fee on 5/1. I called on the next business day and spoke to someone I could not understand, so I asked to speak with someone else. After putting me on hold for about 20 minutes, she informed me that there was no one available, but a manager would call me back "within 24 business hours". I confirmed that they are open 12 hours a day on weekdays, and calculated the day and time I could expect a call by. I did not get a call back until over 3 days had passed, and the only information left was a name and the 800 number. I called back that day. Everyone I spoke to just told me the payment was received after the due date, and there was nothing they could do. None of the 4 people I spoke to was able to explain to me how the billing cycle and payment due date are determined, so that I could set up my AutoPay correctly to make sure they always receive their payment in plenty of time. All I learned was that the billing cycle is 29-32 days long, and that it does not correlate with the number of calendar days or business days into the month.

Damage Resulting
Hundreds of dollars in additional finance charges in just the first month, the $39 late fee, and a minimum payment which has nearly doubled. I will probably have to file bankruptcy over this, even though I have excellent credit with no other negative marks.
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Soaring Consumer on 05/08/2009:
According to your review, your payment was withdrawn from your account on a Tuesday, and the due date was the weekend. That should have been plenty of time for Advanta to credit the payment to your account.

If you have proof that the money was withdrawn well before the due-date (your bank statement would show this) then Advanta has no right to penalize you.

Contact your state's Office of the Attorney General's Consumer Protection Division and the Federal Trade Commission.
Anonymous on 05/08/2009:
First of all, let me start by saying that you are doing the right thing by using your own bank's bill pay service. There are some considerations thoug. Bill pay services set up electronic relationships with some payees, usually the very large ones. For payees that are not electronic relationships, they will cut and mail a paper check. Generally speaking, you can tell from your bill pay site whether or not a payee is electronic, or paper.

In your case, if Advanta is electronic, you have a very strong case. If, however, they get a paper check, there may not have been adequate time to cut, mail, receive and process a paper payment. Your bank could probably tell you which method was used, if it is not readily apparent by looking.

Also, bear in mind that there is a third party involved, that being the company that processes the payment for your bank. When you schedule the payment, your bank transfers the funds to them, so you cannot rely on the date the funds were withdrawn as proof of payment. If it is an electronic payment, which hopefully it was, they can furnish proof of both when it was made, *and* when it was received by Advanta. Your bank will probably be your ally in this matter, hopefully you have a good relationship with your branch manager, they can be a great advocate in a problem like this. Good luck.
Anonymous on 05/08/2009:
Great advice Ken. To the OP, I would NOT contact any government agencies such as Soaring suggested until you have exhausted all other avenues. Doing so will only create frustration on your part because they will suggest you go back to your bank... exactly as Ken suggested in his post. If that fails then it would be appropriate to move up to a government entity for assistance.
Anonymous on 05/08/2009:
Why thank you John. :{)
Soaring Consumer on 05/08/2009:
Good points I didn't know of. Follow Ken and John's advice before contacting the aforementioned agencies.
madconsumer on 05/08/2009:
sue em.

"Follow Ken and John's advice before contacting the aforementioned agencies."

then stop telling everyone to sue em, and contact all the state egncies.
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Rate Jacking
Posted by on
PENNSYLVANIA -- A few months ago I reviewed my Advanta business credit card and noticed that my interest rate was increased to an unbelievable 27.19% from 7.99%, along with a 2.99% fixed rate that I had for another portion of my loan that was supposed to be "guaranteed" for the life of my loan!

I called Advanta to find out if it was a mistake and they informed me that they sent me a letter several months ago explaining the rate increase and what the new rate would be...funny I never recalled receiving that letter...I think I would remember that. They told me the increase was NOT because of my credit history (I received my free credit report which was excellent, showing no late payments, great credit score and solid debt to equity ratio) but they proceeded to explain some convoluted formula that they used saying I "could" become a bad credit risk in th future???

So, based on Advanta's "logic" they would rather get rid of long standing customers with great credit history and keep the marginal customers that have to pay their "loan shark" rates and
have a higher propensity to default.

I told them that I had decided to transfer my balance to another credit card company with a 7.25% rate and a 0% intro for 12 months and no transfer fee. They didn't respond or even OFFER to lower my interest rate. They DID tell me tat I could cancel my card and in 3 months reapply as a new customer and receive their 6.99% rate????? Go figure. In the meantime they sent me "convenience" checks with a 3% transfer fee and a 27.19% rate!!!

Needless to say I will NEVER apply for credit card or deal with Advanta again... they must be having very bad financial problems.

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Unfair Business Practice
Posted by on
I think that the Advanta Credit card is the most unfair to any consumer. I opened a business credit card with them 2-3 years ago in which the interest rate was at 7.99%, which I thought was pretty good. I have never being late with them or with any of my creditors, however I just found out that they (Advanta) increased my interest rate to over 26%, almost 4 times the original rate. Not only I have never being late, but my monthly payment is always more than the minimum required and my balance is less than half of the available credit. It seems that when the economy gets tough for the consumer, the credit card companies instead of reducing the interest rates to help and motivate the consumer to make the payments, they do the opposite. They make it more difficult for us. Most of us, even if we are tied with money, we really try to be a responsible consumer and make the payments on time. I don't think that "just because" they should make an increase like this. I feel that they are not acting in good faith to a good consumer.

I think that the credit card companies should be regulated in which they are not allowed to do what Advanta is doing. It is so unfair that after searching the internet I see that other people, just like me, are going through the same sad situation.

I feel that all of us going through this should get together and find legal advise, write to government representatives, etc. Make it public, so the consumers are aware of what is going on. I know I will. I have always being a fanatic of good credit, paying the bills on time, help and advise others to do the same and what is happening in our market place with Advanta and some other credit card companies, is just plain unfair.

If you have a similar experience with Advanta or any other credit card, please post your comments for the consumers to be aware of what they are getting into.
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tnchuck100 on 10/25/2008:
Rme, very good post. You have the right idea. Everyone needs to inundate the elected government officials with complaints like this. After all, it is they who allow the banks to make up their own rules and allow them to change those rules at will.

Banks, satellite companies, and cell phone companies are the only businesses out there that can bind you to a contract which has no beneficial clauses to protect the consumer and can change those terms at any time for any reason.

By definition, a contract should benefit both parties and cannot be changed without mutual consent.

Thanks, Rme. (VH)
old fart on 10/25/2008:
The excuse is that they have to raise rates to compensate for the losses they take on defaulted C/C agreements...
The prompt payers are penalized for the sins of the deadbeats...
I voted this V/H...
Gettinlubed on 11/24/2008:
I'm getting that same action and I just talked to them today. My credit is excellent and they said that I am "high risk" and if I want to keep my credit line with them, I will pay the 32.18% BUT I can call BACK in 90 days and they will reassess my account then.

Of course, MY CREDIT SCORE isn't the ONLY thing they factor into MY INTEREST rate, its just a SMALL portion of it. Another SMALL factor is that THEY have been paid ON TIME every month for the last 4 years. Apparently, those two factors are the least of their concern.

Paying all of these off is sucking up all of my working capital! How am I supposed to "create" jobs when I am paying 32.18%?! I have been an on time paying customer for over 4 years!

Once these suckers are all paid off I will start investing in myself. For every CC I pay off I will start putting THAT money in the bank and borrowing WITH interest FROM MYSELF. The transition will be hard but I am DONE with CC Co.s ABUSE.

I wish there was a class action lawsuit to put a cap on these rates! I can see NOW how folks debt gets spiraled out of control. Charge a BUSINESS necessity, pay 32.18%....can't pay off in one month, minimum amount required for payment doesn't cover interest. Interest tacked onto charge account. Interest accruing on other interest. Someone pass me the Ph.D. I just figured this all out.

BTW. First Equity card is doing the SAME thing! only they don't base their rates on Prime Rate, they are based on Libor (whatever THAT IS)
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Advanta Credit Card Fraud
Posted by on
RENO, NEVADA -- Nov. 2007 I applied for a credit card from Advanta with a zero interest rate for 12 months.

Dec 2007 I paid my bill in full and on time.

Jan 2008 I received a notice from Advanta that $90 was overdue. I contacted customer representatives who refused to acknowledge that the payment had been made. The overdue charge triggered late fees and increased my interest rate which is currently 29.99%

In Feb 2008 I provided my bank records of payment made to Advanta. They answered my letter with nonsense and never acknowledged my bank records showing the payments were paid in full and on time. It was apparent they had no intention of addressing the issue of my bank records because then they would have had to acknowledge that the payments were in fact paid on time. It was very apparent to me that Advanta customer service representatives were not incompetent but were actively engaged in the illegal conduct of the company, that is manufacturing late fees to increase interest rates.

I contacted the FTC (Fair Credit Billing Act), FDIC (Regulation Z), BBB, and locally the Nevada Attorney General's office.

The FDIC added my complaint to the list of issues to be reviewed during their next audit of Advanta.

The Utah BBB added my complaint to their list of 228 complaints against this company.

I am in the process of writing a Federal Complaint against Advanta Bank Corp which will be posted online late May or early June 2008.

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tnchuck100 on 05/10/2008:
Reporting this to the government agencies is a good thing and could get Advanta investigated when enough complaints are received. However, this will not help YOUR situation.

Send the a letter certified mail/return receipt requested. Demand this be corrected within 30 business days. Advise them of your intent to sue if this is not handled expeditiously. Include copies of your documentation.

Also, send copies of this to all three credit bureaus.

If they don't comply, file suit in small claims court. When they are served they will probably come to you to settle.

Good luck. Let us know how this plays out.
tnchuck100 on 05/10/2008:
kerwinator, I just checked out the link you provided. It looks like you have a good handle on this already.
Anonymous on 05/10/2008:
There is a lot of helpful information in this post. And chuck gives a succinct list of things to be done if this happens to others. Great post. Great response from tnchuck100.
Galilee55 on 09/10/2008:
What links are you talking about? I need them, too. My rate went from 7.99% to 35.08%! 742 Credit score, no late payments, no over the limits, nothing. And they say they send me something on August 14th and the new rate took effect on September 2nd. And, like so many people on line I have read about, I never got any notice.
Phatjag on 09/15/2008:
The same thing happened to me. My rate was changed from 9.99% to 25% without notice. They said they sent notice but I did not receive it. No late payments ever. My credit is perfect. I think Advanta is a horrible company.
surf2day on 12/19/2008:
2 years at 7.99%, excellent credit , never late never over limit, went to 27.99% Called , got BS answers , never received opt out notice. Considering small claims.
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Raising Interest Rates for Fun & Pleasure?
Posted by on
37174, TENNESSEE -- I have had a Small Business (S Corp) for 9 years. I have had a Business Credit card with Advanta Bank Corp for many of those years. Always paid in advance of the due date more than the minimum amount due usually paid the day it arrived in the mail. All of the sudden they more than doubled the minimum amount due about a year ago for no reason whatsoever. Then they decided to raise my interest rate to 35.99%. I didn't notice that until early summer of 2007. When I called their office to inquire about that and asked the reason. The customer service person said he didn't know. I said can you see from my record that I have excellent credit with your company. He said yes. I said can you see from your computer record that I have excellent credit with all of my other creditors too. He said yes. I asked then why did your company raise my rate up to 35.99% for no apparent reason. He didn't know. I asked for his manager. Got pretty much the same answers from him. I did get a chance to say that I am from Chicago and where I grew up we called that Mafia loan rates and they were illegal.

So when did our government allow the banks to use the Mob interest rates. Would we small businesses be better off to go directly to the Mob for our financing. At least we would get straight answers from them and probably a better interest rate too!
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Extreme Interest Increase Without Cause
Posted by on
My wife and I have a small business credit card with Advanta. We have had the card for over 5 years. We have always paid the payment on time. I schedule them online to be paid from our checking account. A few months ago the interest rate began to climb. It jumped to 17.18% then last month it rocketed up to 37%. When I called customer service and waded through all the automated stuff I finally got to talk to their out of country outsourcing. Sounded like an Indian accent. Anyway, the individual was rude and flat said that it did not matter that we paid on time that they had decided to increase the interest rate regardless of whether or not we had been good customers and paid our monthly payment continuously on time.

It seems to me that in these economic times they are attacking even their good customers to increase their bottom line. I for one will be closing the account and they can find someone else to scam.
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Bait and Switch
Posted by on
Beware of Advanta Credit Cards. They are an advertiser on this web site.

I am a small business owner and used this card for all my purchases, usually 10,000 per month. I paid it off every month for the last 12 months. It is the type of card that gives me a rebate check for home improvement purchases. Since I am a carpenter, I usually get a $100 check back.

Originally, it was supposed to be a low rate card, they still advertise it as such on this web site. Well, somewhere along the way, it went up to 26%. I had just had my first month where I missed being able to pay the full amount, and even since I paid off most of the balance, given the way the "daily balance" calculation works, I paid about $300 in interest.

Coincidentally, I received a solicitation to get a card at 7.9% from them. So I called to get my rate lowered, which they would not do. So, I cancelled my card and applied for a new one, but since the balance is not paid off, they won't issue me a "second" card. In an economy where we are trying to "bail-out" credit card companies, it seems that instead of giving them money, we should prosecute them for malicious lending practices.

This is a sad, sad, time for the consumer.
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Beware Of Advanta - Criminal Actions!
Posted by on
MAPLEWOOD, NEW JERSEY -- I was so surprised to find all the complaints about Advanta. I'm a small business having the same exact issue with this company. Customer since 2005, no late payments, paid more than the minimal amount due, no problems increasing credit limits and now that we have utilized all of the credit line they change our rate from 7.9% to 25%. Contacting the company resulted in the same as everyone else experienced. They will not budge on the interest rate!

I certainly would like to pay the entire amount off, but unfortunately in today's business climate it will be very difficult. Advanta has placed my business in a very precarious position.

How can this be a legitimate practice? IS there any oversight of the credit credit card companies? I've written a letter to my Congressman, but I don't know what an be done about this. Since there are so many of us that are experiencing the same problem, does any one have any advice on what can be done?
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Davenport on 10/15/2008:
Legally, they can charge you almost any interest rate they want. If you can, I suggest finding a card with a lower rate and switching the balance to the new card. Unfortunately, it's happening with many companies.
Slimjim on 10/15/2008:
The future of this practice may be in jeopardy, but right now, credit agreements still have provisions for this nonsense. Davenports may be the only other post but it is the best. Find another cc company who will be willing to give you an account with a decent balance transfer incentive and tell Advanta adios.
madirishman on 10/28/2008:

In 2005 we applied for and received a business credit account from Advanta Bank Corp. with a normal interest rate of 7.99%. Since openning the account we have not missed a payment, nor suffered any credit issues.

In Jun of 08 the interest on our Advanta Platinum Business card jumped from 7.99% to 16.99% Again in Jul it increased to 17.49%, Aug 35.39%, Sep 35.08%, and Sep 36.31%. To summarize from Feb 08 to Sep 08 our interest rate quadrupled.

When we began inquiring with Advanta customer serivce (which appears to be an international site help desk). The agents were obviously reading from a well crafted script and did not help stating the reason for each increase was a combination of issues effecting your credit and they would not tell what us the specific reason(s) for our increase, further they have not to date allowed us to speak with a supervisor stating they would have one call us as soon as possible.

I have filed a compiant with the FDIC about this matter and have submitted a longer version of this note to ABC networks Brian Ross investigates.

I encourage everyone to contact the FDIC and or a news agency to report this mess. I am also looking for an attorney to address this.
Gettinlubed on 11/24/2008:
madirishman. I will do the same. If we ALL stand up to this BS we can make a difference!
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