Bad credit, credit repair, credit scores

No one seeks bad credit, wants to go to a credit repair firm or desires bankruptcy. These news articles help consumers avoid credit traps and repair the damage wisely.





Latest credit card news


 Bad credit, credit repair

Low body image linked to overspending and debt -- Researchers, for the first time, find a correlation between how we view ourselves and our spending. ... (See Debt)

Being authorized user on a maxed-out card: Does it help or hurt score? -- Removing yourself as authorized user from a nearly maxed-out card can have mixed effects on your score, but you should do it and start building credit on your own ... (See User)

Why do I keep getting rejected for a new card? -- Even though you repaid the balance, don't expect complete forgiveness ... (See Rejected)

5 ways to cut your card debt as interest rates rise -- Focus on paying down your balance as card interest rates climb ... (See Rising APRs)

Alerting card issuers of travel plans may soon be obsolete -- New industry-leading fraud detection technology can recognize when card members are traveling, eliminating the need to notify card companies of travel plans ... (See Travel)

Q&A: Missing a card payment to build credit is terrible advice -- Missing an initial payment on your first card to start building credit is not only bad advice, but can also void some of the promotions on the card, like a 0 percent APR. ... (See Bad advice)

Survey: Average card APR holds steady at 16.06 percent for third week -- July 19, 2017: The national average APR for new credit cards held still this week despite multiple changes to card offers, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Charged Up! podcast: How to live debt-free -- Learn how to get out of the cycle of debt and start living a debt-free life, while still enjoying what matters most ... (See Podcast)

Bad credit? You’re still a target for identity thieves -- Many consumers believe identity thieves won't touch them because of their poor credit. It's not true ... (See Identity theft)

Can you be too old for a credit card? -- By law, banks cannot consider age when they make a credit decision. However, other factors can often impact senior citizens ... (See Too old)

Q&A: Closing maxed-out card won't lower credit utilization -- Closing a card will never lower your credit utilization or help your score by any other means. But paying off card debt while keeping the card open will. ... (See Maxed)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains at record 16.06 percent for second week -- July 12, 2017: The national average APR for new card offers remained above 16 percent Wednesday for the second week in a row, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Charged Up! podcast: Becoming a suitcase entrepreneur -- Author of "The Suitcase Entrepreneur" Natalie Sisson has figured out how to live anywhere in the world and still earn a six-figure salary doing what she loves ... (See Suitcase)

Lenders' right to offset: What you need to know -- This little-known clause allows funds to be pulled from your accounts to pay debts ... (See Right to offset)

Student credit cards: The definitive guide -- Five lessons for students ready to apply for their first credit card ... (See Student cards)

Q&A: Does being an authorized user on too many cards hurt my score? -- Removing yourself as an authorized user from credit cards could either hurt or boost your score; it all depends on your own credit history and the amounts you owe ... (See User)

Rate survey: Average card APR surges to record 16.06 percent -- One credit union bucks the trend by lowering card APR ... (See APRs)

Charged Up! podcast: Warding off financial infidelity -- Janet Lombardi shares her experience with bankruptcy after her husband drained their accounts and racked up debt to feed an addiction and hide business problems ... (See Podcast)

6 percent of FICO scores to change under new credit rules -- The credit bureaus will remove all civil judgment and most tax lien data from credit files starting July 1 ... (See FICO)

4 questions to ask to score the best secured card -- Know what to ask when shopping for a secured card to increase your chances to be approved while keeping your score intact ... (See Secured)

Wrongly reported old delinquencies can keep credit score low -- Old delinquencies reported as recent by mistake can seriously damage your credit score. Identify any errors on your credit report and submit an investigation to credit bureaus ... (See Errors)

Rate survey: Average card APR jumps to record 16 percent -- Issuers cut back on mailing rewards cards offers ... (See Rate report)

Don't rush to close your secured card -- If a new unsecured card has a low limit, you may want to keep secured card open ... (See Secured)

Charged Up! podcast: How to start building wealth now -- Real estate mogul and best-selling author David Osborn breaks down his pillars of success when it comes to building wealth and how you can get into the game now . ... (See Podcast)

Immigrants reveal shock, confusion at US credit system -- Six immigrants from around the globe reveal their impressions about the U.S. plastic culture, and how they navigated the road to good credit. ... (See US)

Video: Tips when applying for a new card -- Make applying for a new card a painless and successful process by following these tips ... (See Credit)

3 strategies for reducing debt on multiple cards -- When paying off credit card debt, set up your priorities first: keeping score high, minimizing interest expenses, or paying smallest balances first. ... (See Strategies)

Rate survey: Average card APR climbs to all-time high of 15.96 percent -- June 21, 2017: The national average APR for new credit card offers set a new record this week after multiple card issuers increased rates, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APRs)

How to help a 17-year-old build good credit, in 3 steps -- At that age, just shy of adulthood, it's the right time, and parents can help ... (See Teen)

Charged Up! podcast: Affording healthy choices -- Robyn O'Brien, a prominent voice in the health food movement, breaks down what it takes to afford to eat healthy meals without breaking the bank. ... (See Podcast)

How quickly can I raise my score after years of inactivity? -- Raising your credit score after years of credit inactivity takes time and consistency. Start by opening a new credit card and using it for daily expenses, like groceries and gas ... (See Inactivity)

Approved for a too-low-limit card; better off closing it? -- If you were approved for a credit card with a very low limit, resist the temptation to close it. Use it wisely to increase your limit and protect your score ... (See Low limit)

CFPB: Many low-income consumers start credit on a bad note -- Lower-income consumers are more likely than those with higher incomes to become "credit visible" with negative items, according to the CFPB ... (See Credit)

Survey: Average card APR jumps to new record of 15.89 percent -- June 14, 2017: The national average APR for new card offers bounced to another all-time high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Charged Up! podcast: The cost of debt in prison -- Out on the streets, debt may mean being hounded by debt collectors. But, in prison it could mean requesting solitary confinement to save your life ... (See Debt)

Meet hip-hop artist Dee-1 who raps about financial literacy -- This 28-year-old, former middle school teacher turned recording artist raps about embracing a lifestyle of hard work, mature choices and fiscal responsibility ... (See Rap)

Supreme Court gives debt buyers a pass from collection law -- In a unanimous Supreme Court ruling Monday, debt buyers can collect accounts they own without obeying the federal law that reins in professional debt collectors ... (See FDCPA)

Can late payment on one card cause APR hike on another? -- The Credit Card Act of 2009 banned the practice of universal default, but there are some loopholes ... (See Rate hike)

Video: 4 ways students can build credit -- For students and graduates, the time is now to build credit so you can buy a car, rent an apartment and build credit history ... (See Student)

6 questions to ask when adding an authorized user to your card -- Considering adding an authorized user to your card? Here are six answers to questions about account access, credit limits, fees, points, credit utilization and statements. ... (See User)

Average card APR climbs to all-time high of 15.83 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- June 7, 2017: The national average APR for new card offers reached another all-time high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See APRs)

Charged Up! podcast: Master the art of negotiation -- Learn how to negotiate that higher salary, lower credit card interest rate or even great deal at a store with expert negotiator and author Linda Swindling ... (See Podcast)

How an immigrant can build credit in the U.S. -- Once you have documentation, it's time to begin your credit journey ... (See Immigrant)

Who to call in the first hours after fraud strikes -- Who to call in the first hours after you've been a fraud victim. ... (See Fraud)

How will closing secured card, opening unsecured card affect credit? -- The possible impact of closing a credit card will be mostly offset by the benefits of opening a new one -- if your available credit doesn't shrink and your credit utilization ratio doesn't increase ... (See Card)

Rate survey: Average card APR jumps to record high of 15.82 percent -- May 31, 2017: The national average APR for new card offers broke another record this week, rising to an all-time high, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Charged Up! podcast: Surviving the robot revolution -- When will robots start coming for your job? The answer: sooner than you think. Hear what industries are safest from robot competition and what skills you need to stay marketable in the new economy ... (See Podcast)

On secured cards, add bigger deposit to goose score -- Having a higher credit limit, and not using it, will help a key scoring factor ... (See Secured)

What is a good credit score? -- What is a good credit score? That depends ... (See Good credit)

Card debt pitfalls for late-in-life marriages -- Older couples face a wider range of financial complications than their younger counterparts ... (See Debt)

Balance transfer plus new debt will lower your credit score -- Transferring balances between existing cards won't hurt your credit score significantly, but if you also add new debt, your credit utilization will increase, thus taking a larger ding to your score ... (See Transfer)

Rate survey: Average card APR falls to 15.77 percent -- May 24, 2017: The national average APR for new card offers dropped to a four-week low Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APRs)

Charged Up! podcast: Getting out of debt in style -- Getting out of debt can be arduous but there are ways to change your debt status without changing your lifestyle ... (See Podcast)

No credit? Unpaid debts can still be sent to collections -- You can be sent to collections over unpaid debt even if you don't have any credit. While it will damage your score, there are steps you can take to put your credit standing on the right foot. ... (See Collections)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains at 15.79 percent for second week -- May 17, 2017: The national average APR for new card offers remained near record highs Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

How to build up a thin credit profile for a future mortgage -- Lenders like to see you've handled a variety of credit products over a period of time ... (See Mortgage)

Charged Up! podcast: Unexpected tools for success -- Author and blogger Eric Barker shares some of the best research available on what really makes people successful and how you can achieve your full potential ... (See Podcast)

Video: 5 tips before buying a house -- If you're looking to buy a new house, be sure to follow these five tips to ensure your credit stays safe and you maximize potential card rewards ... (See House)

Bad credit? Avoid credit checks with prepaid cellphone plans -- Major carriers offer plans that allow you to bypass a dreaded credit check ... (See Credit checks)

Loan can boost score faster than balance transfer deal -- If you have several cards with high credit utilization ratio and want to lower borrowing costs while raising your credit score, a personal consolidation loan can be a better option than a balance transfer. ... (See Loan)

Rate survey: Average card APR dips to 15.79 percent -- Rate report template ... (See Rates)

Charged Up! podcast: How to write a financial plan -- In her book "If You Love Your Family, Save Like It," Nicole Peterkin talks about the biggest mistake people make when it comes to planning for their financial futures. In this episode she shares how to create a financial plan that protects your family ... (See Podcast)

How to protect kids from debt, financial stress -- There are ways to prevent emotional harm financial troubles can have on children ... (See Kids)

Should I sell my house to get out of debt? -- If you're on a fixed income, buried in debt and have a house in a thriving real estate market, selling your property is one option ... (See House)

Infographic: Card market continues climb but subprime still in hole -- Americans now have more cards open than at the end of 2008 ... (See Card market)

6 steps to make amends for financial misdeeds -- How to craft an apology and repayment plan that works ... (See Amends)

Is credit card paid off 10 years ago lowering my score? -- An old card that was paid off on time contributes positively to your credit score. Instead of trying to delete it from your report, consider reactivating and using it to maximize its scoring benefits ... (See Q&A)

Rate survey: Average card APR spikes to all-time high of 15.80 percent -- May 3, 2017: The national average APR for new credit card offers busted another record this week, rising to an all-time high, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APRs)

How to know when to stage a credit intervention -- When someone close to you is making one destructive financial decision after another, it may be time to step in ... (See Intervention)

Will paying down closed card debt help my credit score? -- There are more pros than cons to paying down debt on a closed credit card -- even if the card was closed by the bank for lack of timely payment on your part. ... (See Closed)

Average card APR climbs to record high of 15.74 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- April 26, 2017: The national average APR for new credit card offers rose to another all-time high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See APRs)

Charged Up! podcast: Credit 101 -- Find out from a credit expert what matters most in your credit report, when your credit score matters the most, what can hurt and what can help you, and everything in between in this credit 101 episode of Charged Up ... (See Podcast)

5 ways 'credit invisibles' can build a credit profile -- No credit profile? With a few steps, create or rebuild a credit history ... (See Invisibles)

Will removal of civil judgments boost my credit score? -- Thanks to new credit reporting practices starting July 1st. many civil judgments and tax liens will be removed from credit scores, but that alone might not increase your score automatically. ... (See Score)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains at 15.72% for second week -- The average APR for new card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APRs)

Charged Up! podcast: You are a badass at making money -- Find out from success coach and best-selling author Jen Sincero how to get your mind in the right place to start making money and achieving your potential ... (See Podcast)

Debt buyers may get exemption from collection rules -- The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments Tuesday on whether companies that buy debt should be exempt from consumer protections that apply to debt collectors ... (See Debt)

Can a prenup or postnup save you from a spouse's debt? -- They are not foolproof, but they certainly put you in a much better position ... (See Debt)

How going tiny (house) can downsize debt -- Dogged by debt? Trade living large for a tiny house ... (See Tiny)

8 myths about settling credit card debt -- Before you decide to try debt settlement, make sure you know the difference between common myths -- and the truth ... (See Debt)

Use 0-percent promotions to create an emergency savings account -- Don't rush to pay off card debt that won't incur interest for a while; make calculated monthly payments and use your cash to give your financial health a boost instead. ... (See Saving)

How to boost low score to qualify for a mortgage -- One option is to be added as an authorized user on a family member's card ... (See Mortgage)

Best credit-building strategies after graduating college -- There are many ways to build your credit, whether you're working full time, freelancing or traveling ... (See College)

How and when to pay new cards to boost credit score -- Rather than close an unwanted new card, keep it open and pay it early to preserve credit score ... (See Score)

Rate survey: Average card APR climbs to 15.72 percent -- April 12, 2017: The national average APR on new card offers inched up again this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APRs)

Charged Up! podcast: Get the 411 on your 401(k) -- The 401(k) is an important part of a secure retirement and understanding how much you pay in fees, how to get in the game if you're self-employed and what to contribute can build great wealth for life's later years ... (See 401(k))

How far can I go over my credit limit before my card gets declined? -- There's no magic formula to guess when a transaction on a maxed-out card will go through, but if it does, it may impact credit limit, monthly minimum payments and/or even credit score ... (See Maxed out)

Looking for love in all the subprime places -- Don't swipe left on bad credit; low scores don't always mean financial irresponsibility ... (See Love score)

Should I pay old card balance on a 1099-C I just received? -- Paying an old debt after receiving a 1099-C (Cancellation of debt) could have more cons than pros; simply reporting the debt and paying its tax might be the wisest option ... (See 1099-C)

Rate survey: Average card APR jumps again to record 15.71 percent -- April 5, 2017: The national average APR on new card offers climbed to another all time high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Charged Up! podcast: Get a financial life -- Find out the fundamentals of personal finance to save money on taxes, save for retirement and buy the right kind of house for your budget ... (See Podcast)

'Financial Life' author Beth Kobliner on millennials' money needs -- Millennials have different priorities than their parents, and author Beth Kobliner, explains why. ... (See Q&A)

Is paying off card debt with a personal loan a good idea? -- The option of taking out a personal loan to pay off credit debt can work for some consumers, but much will depend on credit score, amount of debt, and spending habits ... (See Loan)

Best card options when sending your child abroad -- Parents should consider adding a credit card for spending and emergencies ... (See Abroad)

Rate survey: Average card APR climbs to record high of 15.63 percent -- March 29, 2017: The national average APR on new card offers inched closer to 16 percent this week, reaching a record high of 15.63 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Charged Up! podcast: The philosophy of life planning -- What are the three most important questions you need to answer before making a life or a financial plan? The 'father of life planning' George Kinder tells you ... (See Planning)

Repairing credit damage incurred as a young adult -- An old unpaid credit card bill can drag your scores down for years ... (See Damage)

Artificial intelligence shines new light on ‘credit invisibles’ -- Credit scorers are using artificial intelligence to analyze alternative consumer data, but some in the industry are wary ... (See AI)

Can an employer pay salary through a payroll card? -- Receiving salary through a payroll card could help initiate a banking relationship, but if you already have a checking or savings account, direct deposit might offer better perks. ... (See Payroll card)

Deed in lieu: How it lowers your credit score, and what to do about it -- If keeping up with your mortgage becomes impossible, a deed in lieu might be a better option than foreclosure. But it still comes with risks and a ding to your credit score ... (See Deed in lieu)

When an authorized user goes rogue: What to do -- You added a guest to your card. It backfired. What now? ... (See Rogue)

Average card APR rises to all-time high of 15.59 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- March 22, 2017: The national average APR on new credit card offers climbed to another all-time high this week, reaching 15.59 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See APRs)

How to clear fraudulent card accounts from credit reports -- When a family member opens cards in your name, you need to file a police report ... (See Fraud)

Charged Up! podcast: Be the boss of your career -- Bestselling author, TV presenter and star of The CW network's business reality show "Hatched," Nicole Lapin dishes on how to build a brand and take charge of your career ... (See Podcast)

Is an unsecured personal loan the best way to consolidate debt? -- Compare it to balance transfer and doing it yourself ... (See Personal loan)

What to do if new collector re-ages old debt on credit report -- If a collector changes the date of default, that's illegal ... (See Re-age)

Q&A: With multiple credit checks, timing is key -- A series of inquiries can affect your score, depending on when they're made ... (See Inquiries)

Average card APR remains at 15.51 percent for second week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- March 15, 2017: The national average APR on new card offers stayed put this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See APRs)

Charged Up! podcast with 'Unshakeable' author Tony Robbins -- No. 1 New York Times best-selling author Tony Robbins discusses the tenets to smart investing from his new book "Unshakeable" ... (See Podcast)

Q&A with Tony Robbins on becoming "Unshakeable" -- Learn from the country's top life and business strategist on the keys to building wealth when it comes to investing and how to find financial security ... (See Investing)

Either yourself or with help, break the debt cycle -- Unpaid debt just leads to more unpaid debt, and the pattern has to be stopped ... (See Debt cycle)

Buying a car? Don't fall for the Patriot Act credit check scam -- Shady car dealers invoke anti-terror law, run unnecessary credit checks to sell you on dealer financing ... (See Scam)

Refusing to pay bills on principle has consequences -- You disagreed with the bill. You didn't pay. The bill's still there ... (See Bill)

United Debt Counselors to refund some fees -- Federal Trade Commission says Texas debt settlement company blasted out deceptive mail to 100,000 credit card users per week ... (See Refund)

Rate survey: Average card APR climbs to record high of 15.51 percent -- March 8, 2017: The national average APR on new card offers inched up this week, rising to an all-time high, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See APRs)

How to improve credit while wages are garnished -- Two options: Pay garnishment off early and pay all other debts on time ... (See Garnish)

Charged Up! podcast: Lessons from a legend -- Robert Kiyosaki become a personal finance superstar with his breakthrough book "Rich Dad, Poor Dad." Now, he talks about how the rich are getting richer and we're not ... (See Lessons)

Chip card delay at gas pumps extends skimming fraud -- Lack of EMV technology means pumps easily compromised by crooks ... (See Skimming)

What happens when you go over your credit limit? -- Credit card issuers can't charge over-limit fees without your permission ... (See Over-limit)

How to minimize the cost of a cash advance -- Cash advances can be costly, but if you take care and pay them quickly, they can be an affordable choice for emergency cash ... (See Cash)

A two-step plan for building young credit -- Keeping balances low and adding new credit strategically can help build up young credit ... (See Young credit)

Survey: Average card APR sits tight at record 15.50 percent -- March 1, 2017: The national average APR on new card offers stayed at a record high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APR)

Adding incarcerated brother-in-law to card can rebuild credit -- Authorized user status is a quick, easy way to jump-start a credit profile ... (See Prison)

Charged Up! podcast: thriving on a single income -- If you're a single parent or trying to support a family on a single income, there are ways to not just survive, but thrive. Emma Johnson shows us how ... (See Podcast)

Can paying off your mortgage hurt your credit score? -- Paying off your mortgage shouldn't hurt your credit score, but results may vary based on other credit factors ... (See Mortgage)

Can I lose my house over credit card debt? -- Probably not, but ignoring debt will just make things worse ... (See Lose house)

Tips for getting a big score boost when paying maxed-out cards -- Paying down cards always helps, but doing it strategically helps more ... (See Score)

'Rich Bitch' author Nicole Lapin shakes up traditional financial advice -- In her "Rich Bitch" and "Boss Bitch" books, Nicole Lapin discusses her own financial faults and how women can get ahead financially ... (See Advice)

Survey: Average card APR remains at record 15.50 percent -- Feb. 22, 2017: The national average APR on new card offers remained fixed at an all-time high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Charged Up! podcast: The art of stretching -- Find out how some of the most successful people and businesses are masters at doing more with less ... (See Stretch)

Debt settlement: Is it right for you? -- Settlement offers one solution to severe debt, but beware false promises and know the downsides ... (See Settle)

Pay off credit card debt with tax refund? 5 questions -- Question No. 1: Do you have an emergency fund? ... (See Tax refund)

Deep card debt jeopardizes hopes to fund children’s college -- Action must be taken to get a handle on $80,000 card debt before more loans get taken out for college-ready daughter ... (See Debt)

Charged Up! podcast: The index card that went viral -- Harold Pollack's index card with "everything you need to know about personal finance" tips became an internet sensation. Find out how to implement those tips now ... (See Tips)

How lowering your card limit hurts your credit score -- You shut down some of your available credit, hurting a key scoring ratio ... (See Lower limit)

Survey: Average card APR climbs to record high of 15.50% -- Feb. 15, 2017: The national average APR on new card offers climbed to another record high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Charged Up! podcast: Love and Money -- Finances play a big role in the success and failures of relationships. Find out what five questions you need to ask your partner now ... (See Podcast)

Know debt settlement companies' full cost -- You will trash your credit and may owe a larger tax bill ... (See Settlement)

On disability with $15,000 in card debt: Is house at risk? -- Take these steps to prevent issuer from filing home lien ... (See House)

Charged Up! podcast: Retiring with enough money -- Professor, author and speaker Teresa Ghilarducci explains what you need to save now, starting at any age ... (See Retire)

'Pay for delete' debt settlement comes out of the shadows -- Big debt collection company makes a consumer-friendly credit reporting practice official policy ... (See Pay for delete)

Rate survey: Average card APR holds steady at record 15.44% -- Feb. 8, 2017: The national average APR on new credit card offers remained at a record high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Percentage of credit cards with balances rises -- 'Revolvers' increase to a 4-year high ... (See Revolvers)

Banks expect credit card troubles to mount in 2017 -- Fed's quarterly survey of loan officers finds pullbacks, concern over debt, delinquency ... (See Survey)

Tax refund delays spark refund anticipation loan comeback -- Those tempted to grab quick-cash options should watch for fees ... (See Refund loans)

Credit counselors don't report you to credit bureaus -- The agencies' debt management plans are credit-score neutral ... (See Report)

Charged Up! podcast: Dealing with debt -- Creditcards.com columnist and CPA Sally Herigstad discusses what options you have when you're in a debt crisis ... (See Debt)

Survey: Average card APR jumps to all-time high of 15.44% -- February 1, 2017: Rate survey: Average card APR jumps to all-time high of 15.44 percent. ... (See Rates)

Charged Up! Podcast: Becoming financially literate -- Finance professor and financial expert Arshad Ahmad tells us how to become financially literate and what you need to be able to do to have financial security ... (See Podcast)

Staying on track after getting a debt consolidation loan -- Set up autopayments, put some of your gains in savings and keep credit card accounts open ... (See Loan)

Can a card issuer charge interest on late fees? -- Yes: Forgetting to pay a bill can leave you paying interest on top of fees ... (See Interest on fees)

Charged Up! Podcast: Answers to your debt questions -- Creditcards.com senior industry analyst, Matt Schulz, sits down to answer questions about debt that you've asked ... (See Podcast)

Average card APR remains at record high of 15.42 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Jan. 25, 2017: The national average APR on new card offers remained at a record high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APR)

Resolution keepers: 5 who transformed their financial lives -- Five success stories of those who stuck to their financial goals ... (See Goals)

Podcast: Charged Up! with Jenny Hoff -- Charged Up! with Jenny Hoff is a personal finance podcast where we talk to experts and answer your questions about credit, debt, small business and more ... (See Charged Up! podcast)

Charged Up! podcast: Keeping financial resolutions -- CFP Hilary Hendershott's tools for successful budgeting ... (See Podcast)

Video: What is a balance transfer credit card? -- Find out how a balance transfer card works and how you can avoid paying interest for a year or more while paying down debt ... (See Transfer)

CFPB provides worksheet to help cut card spending -- Reducing card use can be easier said than done. Worksheet from U.S. consumer bureau provides one simple blueprint ... (See Worksheet)

Sticking to the long, slow credit rebuilding process -- After bankruptcy, garnishment, find a plan that works for you ... (See Rebuild)

Americans' credit card debt hits $1 trillion -- Our national credit card balance is hitting $1 trillion this month - the highest level since the Great Recession ... (See $1 trillion)

You loaned out a card, got stiffed? Go to small-claims court -- You still have the pay the bill, but can pursue a civil suit ... (See Bill)

Credit pulls hurt score, but only once -- Scoring formula consolidates multiple checks into one ... (See Credit pulls)

Survey: Average card APR climbs to record 15.42 percent -- Despite higher interest rates, consumers are adding to their card balances ... (See Rates)

Cable service opened in daughter's name goes unpaid -- She gave her permission, but now may be stuck with the bill ... (See Bill)

Rebuilt credit, sleep better -- Barely making it? Seek financial help ... (See Rebuild)

Card debt's being charged off, now what? -- What to expect when an issuer decides to wipe your debt off its books ... (See Charge-off)

Your 6-months-with-no-payment credit score comeback plan -- Restoring your credit won't be quick or easy, but it can be done ... (See Plan)

Survey: Average card APR stays at record high of 15.36 percent -- Jan. 11, 2017: The national average APR on new credit card offers remained at a record high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

5 reasons not to put medical bills on credit cards -- A seemingly quick-fix solution could lead to more financial woes over time. ... (See Medical)

Avoid using your IRA to pay card debt -- Wiping out your life's savings will create its own problems ... (See IRA)

Video: How to meditate your way out of debt -- Contemplation can ease anxiety so you can deal with debt ... (See Video)

7 steps: Clean up your credit by spring -- Whether the future holds a new mortgage, car or just smaller debt burdens, these steps will build your credit and make it possible ... (See Credit steps)

Rate survey: Average card APR jumps to 15.36 percent -- Jan. 4, 2017: Already at a record high, the national average APR on new card offers jumped again, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

4 types of financial helpers: which is best for you? -- Financial helpers can assist with almost any money situation. It's important to know who to call when you're in need ... (See Finances)

Retired, with recent bankruptcy: Should you get a card? -- Proceed with caution and consider a secured card ... (See Retired)

New accounts should have only minor credit score impact -- Something's wrong if a new credit card and a new utility account cause a big credit score drop ... (See Scores)

Late payments' recency, frequency, severity dictate score damage -- Letting one card go unpaid is not a strategy ... (See Paying late)

Don't let credit card debt delay marriage -- Marriage has financial benefits. Shedding debt can be one ... (See Delay)

Card resolutions abound for 2017 -- Paying credit card debt weighs on many Americans' minds ... (See Resolutions)

Average card APR climbs to all-time high of 15.29 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Dec. 28, 2016: Average rates on new credit card offers spiked again this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Record)

How do credit-builder loans work? -- You don't get access to the loan until later, but payments are reported to the credit bureaus, building a positive credit history ... (See Loan)

Debt-free seniors may find themselves unscorable -- Congratulations! You've paid off your mortgage and all other debt. But you may have lost something else in the process: your credit score ... (See Unscorable seniors)

How to remove old debt from credit reports -- If a debt is older than decade, it should have fallen off your credit report ... (See Debt)

Survey: Average card APR jumps to record 15.27 percent -- Dec. 21, 2016: The average APR on new credit card offers rose to an all-time high Wednesday after the Federal Reserve increased its benchmark interest rate, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Why credit applications get denied after recent bankruptcy -- Try secured cards and becoming an authorized user to rebuild scores ... (See Bankruptcy)

Rejected for credit: When to take no for an answer -- Being turned down can be crushing, but it can be a sign you need to take seriously ... (See Credit)

Which cards let you be a co-signer, joint account holder -- Some issuers let consumers share accounts, others don't ... (See Joint)

On active military duty? You can't get 6 percent APR cap on cards -- Service members' legal protections apply to older debt ... (See Cap)

House lien from unpaid card debt shouldn't be a surprise -- No one can put a lien on your house without notifying you ... (See Lien)

How credit scores attempt to predict the future -- Great credit today can tumble tomorrow; scoring formulas look for, rank risks ... (See Predict)

Rate survey: Average card APR rises to 15.20 percent -- Dec. 14, 2016: The average APR on new card offers inched higher Wednesday after Capital One increased the APR on one of its cash back credit cards, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Card APRs)

Making minimum payments versus closing a card account -- Getting the card out of delinquency, paying on time are the important things ... (See Delinquent)

Behind on child support? 9 ways you could be made to pay -- Those who fall behind face a legal system that prioritizes swift collection on behalf of children, which can make life miserable for those who don't pay ... (See Support)

With balance transfers, watch your individual card utilization -- If transfer will eat up available credit, expect a credit score hit ... (See Transfer)

Rate survey: Average card APR holds steady at 15.18% for ninth week -- Dec. 7, 2016: The average APR on new card offers held still Wednesday despite multiple small rate changes, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APR)

Adding second card may boost thin credit file -- Adding a new card may help sagging score, but paying off debt in collections may help even more ... (See Credit score)

Yes, rates will rise on closed accounts with balances -- An exception in the federal CARD Act lets issuers pass along Fed rate hikes, and those are coming ... (See Closed )

Small credit line? Pay early to boost your score -- Knocking down the balance quickly keeps your credit utilization low ... (See Early)

Card delinquency hits 15-year low -- It's another sign of U.S. consumers' improving finances ... (See Delinquency)

Can you dispute an honest credit mistake? -- Lack of interest payments on a deferred payment deal tanks husband's credit score ... (See Mistake)

Deep in debt after college: Where to start? -- With multiple debts in default, but better job prospects, it's time to get a plan ... (See Debt)

Your options when a parent is financially irresponsible -- A child can take over with power of attorney or guardianship ... (See Take over)

Mixed credit files: How to avoid them, fix them -- Every Jr., Sr. and Smith beware: People with similar or common names are at risk of having credit report mashups ... (See Mixed files)

Rate survey: Average card APR holds steady at 15.18 percent -- Nov. 23, 2016: The average APR on new credit card offers stayed put Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Deceased dad left trail of fraudulent accounts -- A grown son discovers dad used his info to open card accounts in his name ... (See Theft)

Withholding payment after dispute goes against you -- Severe credit damage awaits if you don't pay up after losing a dispute ... (See Withhold)

Poll: Sharing credit cards common, but can bring problems -- Sharing a credit card account strengthens bonds, but encourages snooping ... (See Poll)

Rate survey: Average card APR stuck at 15.18 percent -- Nov. 16, 2016: The average APR on new card offers stayed at 15.18 percent Wednesday for the sixth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Holidays bring a surge in retail cards, study finds -- Number of cards, amounts owed, delinquencies all projected to rise ... (See Retail cards)

Am I liable for grown son's business debt on shared card? -- What to do if a child is an authorized user on your card, racks up business debt and can't pay ... (See Debt)

Consolidate debt into high-rate personal loan? Don't -- A 29 percent loan may be convenient, but the terms are terrible ... (See Condolidate)

Find the reason for a sudden 100-point credit score drop -- Start by reviewing ‘credit score factors’ listed on your report ... (See Drop)

Rate survey: Average card APR holds steady at 15.18 percent -- Nov. 9, 2016: The average APR on new credit card offers remained near record highs Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APR)

How to rebuild credit after a business setback -- After a business setback or bankruptcy, repay your debts, learn from your mistakes, and get back in the credit game ... (See Rebuild)

What happens when you drop out of a debt management plan -- If you stop paying, the debt will not go away, but the benefits of the plan will ... (See DMP dropout)

The case against credit card piggybacking -- The odds of something going wrong are high and it's better to let others build their own good credit habits ... (See Piggybacking)

How to restore your good credit score to great -- Examine your recent loan-related activity to find what caused the drop ... (See Score)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains unchanged at 15.18 percent -- Nov. 2, 2016: The average APR on new credit card offers remained fixed at 15.18 percent Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Headed to a credit repair company? Know what to expect -- Hiring someone to fix your credit can be a positive step, just know who you are dealing with ... (See Fix)

New card accounts rise to near pre-recession levels -- Number of new accounts at 85 million, up 11 percent in the past year ... (See Accounts rise)

Can't afford monthly card payment? Try these options -- There's no easy way to delete debt, but you do have choices ... (See Debt)

Autopayments, though convenient, can backfire -- Autopay may be convenient, but sometimes it's best to make payments manually ... (See Autopay)

Survey: Average card APR remains fixed at 15.18 percent -- Oct. 26:2016: Online card fraud rises, while card-present fraud drops due to EMV switch, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report ... (See Rates)

Get bankruptcy trustee approval prior to applying for credit -- If still in Chapter 13, you need approval before you can apply for a new credit card ... (See Credit)

Keep credit utilization low when refinancing mortgage -- Even if you don't carry a balance, high card use can hurt ... (See Refinance)

Help! I maxed out 5 cards to 'help' online boyfriend -- Retired woman falls for scam, racks up $35,000 she can't pay back ... (See Scam)

Survey: Average card APR remains at 15.18 percent for second week -- October 19, 2016: The average APR on new credit card offers remained at 15.18 percent Wednesday for a second week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

8-credit-mistakes-made-by-the-credit-experts -- Everyday cardholders can learn from gaffes made by gurus ... (See Mistakes)

Video: The psychology of bill avoidance -- Take small steps to deal with that which you dread, a professor says ... (See Bills)

Rate survey: Average card APR falls to 15.18 percent -- October 12, 2016: The average APR on new card offers fell to a nine-week low on Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

How to cancel a debt settlement contract -- You can escape, but you'll still have to deal with the debt ... (See Cancel)

Social Security benefits protected from garnishment -- As long as your benefits are direct deposited to your bank, creditors can't take them ... (See Debt)

Credit card delinquencies rise but remain near historic lows -- Cardholders have learned their lesson and pay down card debts, says the American Bankers Association ... (See Debt)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains at 15.22 percent -- October 5, 2016: The average APR on new card offers remained near a five-year high for the sixth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Rolling card debt into a mortgage? Consider alternatives -- You risk your house when you convert debt from unsecured to secured ... (See Mortgage)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains at record high -- September 28, 2016: The average APR on new card offers remained fixed at a nearly five-year high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Once balance is paid off, your credit limit is restored -- New to credit? Here's how charging and repaying affects your credit limit. ... (See Limit)

Paid a charged-off debt; now what? -- It’s not enough to just pay a charge-off and forget about it. There are some cases in which the information about the paid charge-off doesn’t get to the credit reporting agencies. ... (See Debt)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains unchanged at 15.22 percent -- September 21, 2016: The average APR on new card offers remained near record highs this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

When a 'friend' racks up $11,000 on your card -- Your options? Take her to civil court, pay the debt or stop paying and risk being sued yourself ... (See Options)

Dispute card accounts opened fraudulently by ex-spouse -- You have to take the proper steps to get the issuers to acknowledge the accounts aren't yours ... (See Fraud)

9 free or cheap apps to help you get out of debt -- Becoming debt free starts with totaling all you owe on your credit cards and loans ... (See Apps)

Rate survey: Average card APR holds tight at 15.22 percent -- Sept. 14, 2016: The average APR on new card offers didn’t budge this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APR)

How to fix credit after dad opens card in son's name -- Son rejects dad's card offer, but finds out dad opened one anyway ... (See Credit)

Demystifying 5 common credit misconceptions -- Don't get tripped up by misleading or confusing credit terminology ... (See Terms)

An old card, left open after divorce, can mean new debt -- Debt collectors don't care what your divorce decree says ... (See Old card)

To escape from crummy cards, you need a plan -- Get basic good credit behavior down pat; worry about the nuances later ... (See Crummy)

Premarital debt weighs on new marriage -- Bringing delinquent debt into a new union can strain joint finances ... (See Debt)

If credit score disappears, here's how to get it back -- Inactivity can cause your credit score to vanish ... (See Disappear)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains at 15.22 percent -- September 7, 2016: Average rates on new credit card offers remained at record highs this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APR)

10 business card mistakes that can tank your credit -- A low score can make it difficult to secure loans, retain suppliers and attract customers ... (See Mistakes)

Living together doesn't create common-law marriage or debt liability -- Keeping accounts separate can protect funds in case partner is sued for repayment ... (See Debt)

6 favors you can ask your card issuer -- Looking for a better deal? It never hurts to ask, and good preparation increases the odds you'll hear a "yes" ... (See Favors)

Rate survey: Average card APR rises to 15.22 percent -- Aug. 31, 2016: The average APR on new credit card offers rose to a record high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APRs)

Don’t fall victim to these 7 credit card timing mistakes -- Paying a bill late, failing to pay off an account and other timing errors can cost you big in terms of credit damage ... (See Timing)

Shady business partner opens up credit in your name -- Straighten out the credit mess, then get a new partner ... (See Business)

Who must pay card debt of deceased husband? -- The state where you live determines who has to pay. ... (See Widow)

Tips, tools for setting up a side gig to get out of debt -- A part-time job on the side can help increase income to pay off debt ... (See Gig)

Be wary of whose card you piggyback on -- If the credit bureau deems the account illegitimate, you'll be out of luck ... (See Piggyback)

Rate survey: Average card APR holds steady at 15.19 percent -- Balance transfer and 0 percent purchase offers become less generous ... (See Rates)

Deceased father's accounts dragging down son's scores -- Knowing exactly how dad's accounts got on son's credit is first step ... (See Scores)

Card issuers can reduce your credit limit -- Banks monitor credit reports, and make adjustments if it sees signs of risk ... (See Limit)

Deceased mom's debts take priority over inheritance -- After debts are paid, then what's left over can be disbursed among any heirs ... (See Heirs)

Recession foreclosures disappearing from credit reports -- With their credit reports cleansed, "boomerang buyers" are returning to a still-depressed housing market ... (See Home)

Survey: Average card APR inches up to 15.19 percent -- After sitting at 15.18% for nine weeks, a move by AmEx ratchets national average up ... (See Rates)

Video: How payment history affects your credit score -- Financial mistakes can haunt you and your FICO score ... (See Payment history)

Is secured card best for rebuilding credit post-bankruptcy? -- If your score is high enough, you may qualify for a regular, unsecured card ... (See Credit)

Keep medical debt from being reported to credit bureaus -- Prevent the credit score damage before it happens ... (See Lucky break)

Pay medical bill before debt goes into collections -- Complex medical billing makes it common for debts to slip past due ... (See Medical debt)

4 wrong money messages for kids (and 4 right ones) -- Parents unknowingly teach their kids unhealthy money habits, but they're fixable ... (See Kids)

How delinquent child support affects credit scores -- States vary in how they report it, so impact varies, too ... (See Scores)

Survey: Average card APR holds tight at 15.18 percent for ninth week -- August 10, 2016: The average APR on new credit card offers remained locked in place this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APR)

Video: Building credit as a new US resident -- Here are five tips for building credit from scratch ... (See Build)

Card options expand when bankruptcy falls off credit report -- At last, 10 years have passed since bankruptcy. Which card should you try for? We'll help you come up with a plan ... (See Post-bankruptcy)

Credit card ownership lags for those with low scores -- Credit card ownership is rebounding, but remains far behind levels seen before the recession, and consumers with bad credit are the ones doing without plastic ... (See Ownership)

Stop soon-to-be ex from sticking you with joint debt -- Take steps now to protect your finances before you get in front of a judge ... (See Divorce)

How being denied credit affects your score -- Only the hard inquiry affects the credit score of an applicant when their credit report is pulled ... (See Denied credit)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains at 15.18% for eighth week -- August 3, 2016: The average APR on new card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APR)

Millennials, now house-hungry, struggle to build credit -- Late to homebuying but eager, millennials look for quick, creative credit score cures ... (See Homebuying)

When medical bills lead to deep debt, tough choices follow -- Cut your costs, get credit counseling and accept that bankruptcy may be in your future ... (See Medical debt)

Hiring a debt collector to enforce loan to friend, family -- When friends and family borrow and fail to repay, it may be time to bring in a professional debt collector ... (See Collect)

Best way to allocate lump sum across multiple card debts -- You can pay high-interest debt first or knock off an entire balance for motivation ... (See Debt)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains stuck at 15.18 percent -- July 27, 2016: The average APR on new card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate survey)

Employers running credit checks on job applicants must tread carefully -- The screening tool is increasingly seen as unfair by state legislatures, though they may make sense in some cases ... (See Credit checks)

Infographic: The face of senior card debt -- Medical bills take up most of the debt of the seinor citizen community, while credit card debt is a close second ... (See Senior debt)

Struggling homeowner reliant on credit looks at raiding 401(k) -- With credit maxed out, car shot, raiding the 401(k) is tempting, but don't do it ... (See Help)

Credit card bill autopayments: tips for getting it right -- Setting up autopayments can prevent slip-ups that can ruin your credit score ... (See Autopay)

Positive card habits up, negative ones down -- Americans pay their credit card bills in full more often, and avoid costly behavior, a six-year survey series finds ... (See Card behavior)

5 credit scoring head-scratchers -- Most of the times, scoring rules make sense. Then there are these ... (See Rules)

Rate survey: Average card APR doesn’t budge -- July 20, 2016: The average APR on new card offers remained locked in place this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

When paying off debt becomes an addiction -- Obsessing over debt repayment can transition into unhealthy behavior ... (See Debt)

How to graduate from debit-only to being a credit card holder -- Don't let fear hold you back from opening a credit card. Used properly, they're a useful tool. ... (See Debit)

Authorized user doesn't like the piggyback ride -- Don't jump off too soon; a close look at the entire credit profile may show it's a net positive ... (See Piggyback)

How to remove a 100-word personal statement from your credit report -- Even if you felt the need to dispute an unpaid bill or explain what led to a foreclosure in the past, there are a number of reasons why you might have a change of heart ... (See Remove)

Rate survey: Average card APR sits tight at 15.18 percent -- July 13, 2016: The average APR on new card offers remained unchanged at 15.18 percent this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Unpaid fees from canceled card can end up in collection -- When a card is canceled, triple-check that no balance remains ... (See Fees)

How do I tell when card debt legally expires? -- The statute of limitations in your state and your card agreement are the starting points, but individual cases can be complex ... (See Debt legally expires)

When spouse dies, who gets the cash-back rewards? -- As an authorized user on your spouse's credit card account, you are usually not entitled to cash-back rewards accrued on the account. But issuers may make an exception ... (See Rewards)

Business partner's personal debts on card may be grounds for suit -- An authorized user isn't normally liable for card debts. But you may still have legal recourse against a small-business partner who won't pay personal charges they rang up on your card ... (See Business partner)

What happens after a debt is charged off -- When the original lender gives up, collection efforts continue, with important consequences ... (See Debt)

Volunteering for jail isn't the answer to debt -- When debt gets deep, don't despair there's help ... (See Jail)

Infographic: Card delinquencies hold near record lows -- At 2.47 percent, late payers are half the number they were during the recession ... (See Delinquency)

9 rewards card sign-up bonus mistakes -- Know the minimum spend required, the fees to avoid and more ... (See Sign-up)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains at 15.18 percent -- July 6, 2016: Interest rates on new credit card held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

A plan now will avoid winter holiday debt -- Summer is the time to start thinking about how to avoid winter holiday debt. Work on budgeting, bargain-hunting and building that savings ... (See Holiday debt)

New card application may renew debt collection -- If you have debt in collections, creditors may come calling once they see you are seeking more credit ... (See Debt)

‘Loaded’ author Sarah Newcomb: Call them loan cards, not credit cards -- In a new book, the behavioral economist talks about the role credit cards play in the financial tales we tell ourselves ... (See Q&A)

Poor personal credit hurts business card application -- Even with good business credit, your chances of approval for a business credit card are poor until you rebuild your personal credit score ... (See Business)

Dealing with aggressive debt collector tactics -- A real debt collector must start by sending a validation of debt notice ... (See Debt)

Credit use by generation: Who's doing the best job? -- The generation you're from likely plays a big role in how you view and use credit products ... (See Credit)

Rate survey: Average card APR holds steady at 15.18 percent -- June 29, 2016: Interest rates on new credit card offers didn’t budge this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Mastering the side hustle to beat down debt -- Millennials struggling with student debt can take on extra work to get out of the red, blogger turned author David Carlson says. It worked for him. ... (See Q&A)

Will I be held liable for my failing business’s credit card debt? -- Even if your small-business credit card accounts aren't appearing on your personal credit report now, they may if you default ... (See Business debt)

Minimum payments won't cut debt on 16 cards -- If all you can afford is the minimum payments on your debt, you need a game-changer ... (See MInimums)

Debt-fighting expats find success abroad -- A rising number of Americans are moving abroad not to dodge debt, but to deal with it. They trim cost of living and save ... (See Saving abroad)

If you settle debt, expect a credit score drop -- Debt settlement can help get you out of overwhelming debt, but there will be a catch ... (See Settle)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains unchanged at 15.18 percent -- June 22, 2016: Interest rates on new credit card offers held still this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Canceling new card won’t offset hard inquiry score impact -- Once you apply, the damage is done. But responsible use over time is the cure ... (See Impact)

Video: Curb emotional spending in 4 steps -- "Retail therapy" can work against you by adding stress on your finances. Here are 4 ways to help stop spending as a way to handle your emotions ... (See Emotional spending)

Low credit score? Mortgages now more expensive -- Recent changes to private mortgage insurance costs hurt low-score, low down payment buyers ... (See PMI)

Risk of lien, garnishment during debt settlement -- If debt negotiations get nasty, you could be sued, so watch out for notices from the court ... (See Garnish)

Rate survey: Average card APR inches up to 15.18 percent -- June15, 2016: The average credit card interest rate ticked up this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Paying down existing balances trumps need for secured card -- Getting rid of current debt will boost score more than getting a new card ... (See Score)

Credit card race, age, gender statistics -- Race, gender and age all play a role in how much credit we're able to access and whether we're able to use that credit to greatest advantage. CreditCards.com has compiled statistics on demographic trends in the credit world ... (See Demographic stats)

9 signs you have too much debt -- Your debt might be out of control if one of these nine signs hits home ... (See Debt)

Plan to walk away from card debt? Read this first -- For those who think blowing off their credit card debt is better than paying it. Here are the caveats and what experts have to say ... (See Walk away)

Tough choice: Sell home to pay off debt -- Your home is your castle, but it could also be your ticket out of debt ... (See Sell)

Card issuers need court judgments to seize debt payments -- Behind on card payments? Issuers can't withdraw debt payments straight from your -- or your spouse's -- bank accounts without legal action ... (See Debt)

Who sees credit report 100-word statements -- Not many lenders bother with them; you may want to remove old ones ... (See 100 words)

Average card APR falls to 15.17 percent: CreditCards.com Rate Report -- After remaining at 15.19 percent for seven weeks, the national average annual percentage rate slid to 15.17 percent ... (See Rates )

Poll: 4 in 10 co-signers lose money -- Helping out a credit-challenged friend or family member by co-signing can damage to credit and relationships ... (See Co-sign)

6 ways to overcome the shame of debt -- Get beyond the stigma of maxed-out cards and piles of bills and start turning around your financial life, experts say ... (See Debt shame)

Just 10 credit score points shy of a mortgage -- These strategies will help you get the final points needed to qualify for that home loan ... (See 10 points)

CFPB proposes regulations on payday loans, other 'debt traps' -- Consumer bureau's rules aim to make small-dollar loans safer without cutting off emergency credit for subprime borrowers ... (See Payday)

Rate survey: Average card APR holds steady at 15.19% -- June 1, 2016: The average credit card interest rate remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APRs)

Minor's co-signed bank account at risk of parents' garnishment -- Even if a minor earns the money, it's a parental asset , and one that would tempt a debt collector ... (See Garnish)

Removing your name from a joint account after divorce -- You're still responsible if ex doesn't pay. If you're on good terms, and ex has good credit, a balance transfer would work ... (See Divorce)

100-word credit report statement: 6 ways it can hurt you -- Sometimes too much information can come back to haunt you ... (See Report)

Infographic: The financially happy now outnumber the unhappy -- For the first time since before the Great Recession, the majority of Americans feel cheerful about their finances ... (See Financially happy)

Why an old debt may vanish from credit report -- If a legitimate debt disappeared from your credit report, don't celebrate yet. It might not be gone long. ... (See Credit report)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains at 15.19 percent for a 6th week -- May 25, 2016: Interest rates on new credit card offers held still this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APRs)

Fight back against debt by FOMO -- Suffering from the fear of missing out? Focus on your goals and budget to tune out social media pressures to spend ... (See Fighting FOMO)

Selling your home to pay off debt, fund college -- Shedding debt is good, but college costs add up fast and another home won't be cheap ... (See Home)

Consumers’ rights to accurate credit reports get boost -- Consumer advocates buoyed by a Congressional proposal to make the credit reporting system fairer and a Supreme Court decision upholding right to accurate information reporting ... (See Credit reports)

Rate survey: Average card APR holds steady at 15.19 percent -- May 18, 2016: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Credit card issuer can't garnish your Social Security check -- Contact the company and ask about a hardship program ... (See Garnish)

Confessions of credit card customer service reps -- Current, former reps reveal what they can, can’t do when you call in ... (See Reps)

Some states offer exceptions to credit reporting rules -- Negative items can come off your report sooner in New York, California ... (See Exceptions)

Survey: Average card APR remains unchanged at 15.19 percent -- May 11, 2016: Average rates on new credit card offers stayed put this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Low utilization boosts balance transfer deal approval odds -- Zero percent balance transfer deals are often reserved for those with high credit scores ... (See 0% deals)

Video: Secured credit cards, explained -- If your credit score is low, you can build your credit by using a secured credit card ... (See Score)

Startup didn't launch, so credit rebuilding needed -- Living on credit cards during startup has risks, but with time you can recover a good credit score ... (See Startup)

Infographic: 2016 sees card debt, delinquency uptick -- Though the number of people who fail to pay debt is not as high as it was in the Great Recession, it has started to increase in 2016 ... (See Delinquency rates)

Don't close accounts after paying card debt -- Using a cash-out refi to pay off card debt? Great. Closing the card accounts after? Not great at all ... (See Close)

Credit building tips you thought were wise, but simply aren’t -- What if all that credit climbing wisdom you learned along the way is wrong — or worse, could actually backfire? ... (See Tips)

Save money and your score with a DIY debt management plan -- In certain circumstances, it can make sense to tackle debt problems yourself ... (See DIY)

9 tips for renting a car with a debit card -- You can almost always rent a car with a debit card, but expect extra hassles ... (See Debit)

Survey: Average card APR remains near record high -- May 4, 2016: Average rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APR)

Paying for a rental car with debit card: 9 obstacles -- You can almost always rent a car with a debit card, but expect extra hassles ... (See Rental )

Walmart MoneyCard prepaid card does not build credit -- If you're looking to build up your credit, prepaid cards are the wrong path to take ... (See Prepaid)

If you co-signed, relative's business card debt is now yours -- A family member's refusal to pay a debt that you guaranteed puts you on the hook ... (See Debt)

How to tell if a debt is too old to collect -- Time determines whether a debt can legally be collected, and you have to know the starting and ending dates ... (See Too old)

Quick fixes for temporary repayment problem -- When life throws a curveball and you can't pay your bills one month, here's what you can do ... (See Bills)

Average card APR remains unchanged at 15.19 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- April 27, 2016: Average rates on new card offers remained near record highs this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

How to bounce back from debt repayment setbacks -- Stumbling along the way to becoming debt-free is common. Here's how to make sure it doesn't derail your whole plan ... (See Debt)

How to build credit when you're not a US resident -- Getting a U.S. address and Individual Taxpayer Identification Number are the first steps ... (See Credit)

4 credit lessons men can learn from women -- New studies reveal women to be smart, savvy spenders, maybe more so than men ... (See Men)

Big balance transfers may run into limits -- Zero-percent loans are great, but you might not be able to transfer all your debt to one ... (See Balance)

Rate survey: Average card APR jumps to 15.19 percent -- April 20, 2016: The average interest rate on new credit card offers rose to a near record high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Used right, subprime cards can help rebuild credit -- Subprime or secured cards can pave the way to a better credit score ... (See Subprime)

Study: Payday loans trigger overdraft fees -- Online payday borrowers who miss repayment face average $185 in bank overdraft fees, federal study finds ... (See Payday loans)

4 authors on how better credit can make you happy -- Money can't buy happiness, but some well-known authors say taking steps to improve your credit can ... (See Happiness)

Infographic: Credit card complaint rates -- Some credit lenders manage to lessen the number of complains lodged against them in 2015, compared to 2014 ... (See Complaints)

After divorce, ex dies with card debt; am I responsible? -- It's unlikely, but check divorce decree, credit reports ... (See Debt)

Positive info not always reported to all 3 credit bureaus -- Big swings in credit scores can result, and that can hurt if you're borrowing ... (See Scores)

Survey: Average card rate holds steady at 15.16 percent for 10th week -- April 13, 2016: The average credit card interest rate remained unchanged Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

How a secured card's security deposit works -- Your deposit acts as your credit line and is refunded once the card is closed and the balance paid off, minus any fees ... (See Secured card)

Infographic: Spigot held tight on subprime credit -- Credit limits for subprime consumers are down from a year ago ... (See Subprime credit)

Credit Card Help: 9 things you need to know about prepaid cards -- Thinking about picking up a reloadable prepaid card? Here’s what you should know first ... (See Prepaid cards)

Pay off all card debt? Or leave a small balance? -- If you want to keep the card, use it; inactivity can cause it to be closed ... (See Pay off)

Paper or emailed credit card statements: Which are better? -- Electronic billing is convenient, saves trees -- but you might miss a payment ... (See Statements)

Will debt settlement hurt authorized user's credit? -- A quick call to issuer to remove authorized user will protect guest cardholder ... (See Settlement)

Even with no SSN, unpaid debt can ruin your credit -- Your name, address and amount owed will be reported ... (See SSN)

Rate survey: Average card rates remain fixed at 15.16 percent for 9th week -- April 6, 2016: The average credit card interest rate held firm Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

While in credit recovery, apply for new card with care -- To maximize your score and get the best new card possible, pay off balance on old card first ... (See Score)

Tax refunds: Urges to save it, spend it clash -- Study shows that most who spend it on needed items or paying down debt feel better rather than those who saved it ... (See Tax refund)

Settlement options on an old card debt -- A "paid in full" notation on your credit report will be helpful ... (See Settle)

What to do about card debt when on a fixed income -- Paying off card debt doesn't solve problem of not having enough to live on ... (See Debt)

Pay off revolving card debt first over installment loan -- A revolving debt balance, in lenders eyes, increases the chance that the borrower will default ... (See Debts)

Survey: Average card rate remains locked at 15.16 percent for 8th week -- March 30, 2016: For the eighth week in a row, the average credit card interest rate remained stuck at 15.16 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

7 things you never budget for (but need to) -- There's always that surprise expense that lands on your credit card ... (See Budget)

If buying a home soon, handle old debt with care -- Have a strategy: How you deal with creditors can clean up your credit -- or send up red flags to mortgage lenders ... (See Home buy)

The hard and fast rules of hard inquiries -- A group of experts explain exactly how credit bureaus’ take hard inquiries in account when you apply for credit ... (See Hard inquiry)

Co-signed card leaves mom's credit in ruins -- When her daughter couldn't pay the bill, collectors turn to her mom ... (See Co-sign)

Lenders may remember old charge-off forever -- Nothing requires a lender to grant more credit if you still owe a debt, despite it falling off your credit report ... (See Charge-off)

Women edging men in the battle of credit smarts -- A new study found that despite the fact that women have more credit cards open then men, they rack up less debt ... (See Gender and credit)

Survey: For 7th week, average card rate remains at 15.16 percent -- March 23, 2016: The average credit card interest rate held firm this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Secured card, patience needed to boost score -- Improving a credit score requires many cycles of consistently paying debt ... (See Score)

6 ways stay-at-home parents ruin their credit -- Taking care of your kids also means taking care of your credit. Avoid these credit mistakes that parents often make ... (See Credit)

Don't rush to pay very old debt in collections -- After many years, it may be uncollectible due to its age ... (See Old debt)

Married, single people differ in views on relationships, money -- Everyone cares about money, but married people tend to see more financial red flags, a new survey finds ... (See Money and relationships)

Average card rates remain at 15.16 percent for 6th week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- The average credit card interest rate remained locked in place this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

5 ways an ex can ruin your credit during breakup, divorce -- Heartbreak is compounded by financial hurt if there's revenge spending or a vacation with a lover on a shared credit card ... (See Divorce)

Wait for bankruptcy discharge before applying for credit -- Only in a few circumstances will new credit be allowed during bankruptcy proceedings ... (See Discharge)

Gen Xers: 4 steps for tackling your debt -- Americans born between the mid-1960s and early 1980s have more debt but less wealth than parents did at the same age. Here's what to do if you're one of them ... (See Gen X)

Debt collectors prey on soldiers and veterans -- Military personnel move regularly, earn steady paychecks and have to protect their security clearances. That makes them more vulnerable to illegal debt collection practices ... (See Military)

Rate survey: Average card rate sits tight at 15.16% -- March 9, 2016: The average credit card interest rate didn’t budge this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Getting, building credit requires an income -- Issuers want to see that you have the ability to repay what you borrow ... (See New to credit)

You may need good credit to get old -- Many seniors stop worrying about their credit scores once they've paid off their homes and cars. That's a mistake: Assisted living facilities and nursing homes often check credit ... (See Seniors)

5 strategies for single parents to tackle credit card debt -- With time short and only one income to stretch, single parents face unique challenges in digging out of debt ... (See Single)

How an unpaid debt affects selling your property -- An unpaid debt isn't a property lien, and shouldn't hamper home sale ... (See Liens)

Rate survey: Average card rates remain at 15.16% for fourth week -- March 2, 2016: The average credit card interest rate stayed put Wednesday at 15.16 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

9 things to know about secured cards -- They start with a security deposit, and, when done right, end with you getting improved credit ... (See Secured card)

Charging after bankruptcy filing can backfire -- Racking up card chages during a time of repayment can lead to trouble ... (See Chapter 13)

Financial management tips for after a loved one dies -- When a loved one dies, things like paying the bills can fall to the wayside ... (See Tips)

If health problems strike, ask for hardship rate reduction on debt -- Avoid a settlement if you can; its credit score impact lingers ... (See Health)

Rate survey: Average card rate holds steady at 15.16 percent -- Feb. 16, 2016: The average credit card interest rate stayed at 15.16 percent Wednesday for the third consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

How and when you can sue a debt collector -- Even if you owe the debt, you may be on the right side of the law ... (See Collection)

Best card to build credit post-bankruptcy -- A secured card is often your best bet after bankruptcy discharge ... (See Secured card)

Citi to refund $5 million to cardholders for illegal collections -- About 2,100 Citi cardholders will get $5 million back for inflated interest payments on debts sold to collectors, under a U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau crackdown ... (See Refund)

Q&A with Patrice Washington: 'Getting real' about money -- When managing money and building wealth, progress starts with believing you can tackle anything life throws at you, according to author Patrice Washington. ... (See Money)

Credit gardening: Sow the seeds for a great score -- Fixing bad credit will take time. But following a "credit gardening" plan can make the journey simpler ... (See Gardening)

Allocating card payments on a limited budget -- Use free tools to plan your debt attack, don't close the account after you succeed ... (See Allocating payments)

Rate survey: Average card rate remains at 15.16 percent -- Feb. 17, 2016: The national average annual percentage rate remained near a record high Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Oil-patch states see rise in loan delinquencies -- Subprime lending continues to rise, says TransUnion data ... (See Delinquencies)

Video: Chapter 7 vs. Chapter 13 bankruptcy -- If you’re considering filing for bankruptcy, knowing the difference between Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 is essential. ... (See Video)

Financial literacy begins moving into the workplace -- Many Americans lack the knowledge to properly manage their money. Employee education programs are working to change that ... (See Workplace)

When good credit marries bad, it takes work -- You don't want your betrothed's bad credit history to bring down yours. Take these steps to protect your credit and help your spouse improve theirs ... (See Wedding risks)

6 money clues your date is a financial disaster -- Assessing a date's financial attitudes early on can save you future heartache ... (See Clues)

Rate survey: Average card rate slips to 15.16 percent -- Feb. 10, 2016: Average rates on new card offers dipped Wednesday after rising the previous week to a four-year high, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

7 ways you are your own worst enemy, financially -- You can keep harming your financial health, or turn it around ... (See Enemy)

Tax refund: Using it to pay off credit card debt -- Five questions to help you decide where to apply that refund ... (See Tax refund)

Deciding whether to settle a credit card debt -- Do you have a lump sum, and are you ready for a credit score hit? ... (See Settle)

Lost job? Budget, don't stop card payments -- Prepare a bare-bones budget and cut all nonessential spending before you stop paying on cards ... (See Job loss)

Infographic: The demise of over-limit fees -- Credit card customers unanimously opt out of once-common fee ... (See Over-limit fee)

Primary account holders are responsible for card debt -- If you're told you're not the primary account holder, you can pay bills, but not make changes ... (See Primary)

Rate survey: Average card rate jumps to 15.18% -- Feb. 3, 2016: Average rates on new credit card offers rose to a four-year high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Getting a new cellphone? Expect a credit check -- If you're signing up for a traditional cellphone contract, your credit will probably be checked. But if your credit isn't great, you have more options than before ... (See Credit check)

How to graduate from parents' credit, cut 'authorized user' cord -- Ready for your own card? Don't ditch that guest card too quickly. ... (See Authorized user)

Long after business is sold, old card debt arises -- A small business owner who handed over a credit card account when he sold his business is being hassled by collectors for debt he didn't ring up ... (See Old debt)

Don't close maxed-out card after you pay off debt -- When the card was maxed out, it was hurting your score; now it's helping ... (See Maxed-out)

7 ways to boost your partner's credit score -- An overhaul of your loved one's low credit score could save your finances and your relationship ... (See Partner's score)

Playing hardball in a debt dispute has credit consequences -- If you feel wronged by a creditor, you can fight, but if you withhold payment your credit score will plummet ... (See Debt hardball)

Rate survey: Average card rate rises to 15.13% -- Jan. 27, 2016: Average rates on new card offers inched higher this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Personal loans surge into mainstream -- Rise of online lenders and a lack of home equity help fuel the growth of this once-small niche of unsecured loans ... (See Personal loans grow )

Use caution when adding a friend as an authorized user -- No matter what your repayment arrangement is, you are ultimately responsible for any debt ... (See Authorized user)

Infographic: Life is financially fragile for millennials -- Young adults tend to carry credit card balances, fret about repaying student loans and don't have an emergency fund ... (See Financial literacy and millennials)

Get through unemployment without borrowing -- There are more options for squeezing money out of your budget while job hunting. Don't be tempted to take out a loan ... (See Unemployment and debt)

Confusion high over credit card late fees -- Despite new protections, 1 in 5 consumers gets tripped up by a late fee. We explain the fine print you need to avoid them ... (See Late fee confusion)

Rate survey: Average card rates hold steady at 15.12% -- Jan. 20, 2016: Average rates on new card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Rate survey: Average card rates fall to 15.12 percent -- Jan. 13, 2016: The national average interest rate on new credit card offers slipped Wednesday for the first time in two months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Don't secretly add an authorized user to boost your rewards -- Some rewards cards dangle the prospect of extra points for adding a friend or relative to your account, but make sure you tell the other person first ... (See Secret authorized user)

5 ways to avoid (or deal with) late fees -- Late fees can quickly add up, and harm your credit. So avoid them if you can, and deal with them smartly if you must ... (See Late fees)

0-percent intro card buys time to pay debt -- Have a plan to use that interest-free intro period wisely ... (See 0-percent card)

Restoring credit after authorized user status goes bad -- When the primary account holder stops paying the bill, all users associated with the account suffer ... (more)

Check credit score before applying for balance transfer -- Inquiries and new accounts both ding your credit score, so choose carefully ... (See Transfer)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates jump to 15.13 percent -- Jan. 6, 2016: Interest rates on new credit card offers rose Wednesday for the fifth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Infographic: Bad financial habits Americans most want to break -- Saving more and paying down credit card debt are among the more popular New Year's resolutions of 2016 ... (See 2016 money resolutions)

Your weight, debt and clutter may be connected -- Clutter, overeating and financial troubles may all be related via subtle emotional factors ... (See Debt and clutter)

To get a fresh financial start, break bad, old money habits -- If you're sick and tired of falling behind on bills, start by thoroughly tracking your spending and trimming where you can ... (See Fresh start)

Credit score differences: How they occur, why they matter -- The credit files' data may differ, it can contain errors and the formulas used on it vary ... (See Credit score differences)

Rate survey: Average card rates jump to 15.07 percent -- Dec. 30, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers rose to a near record high this week after Citi boosted rates on multiple cards, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Tracking tools and tips for keeping financial resolutions -- Tracking your progress toward New Year's resolutions is crucial to succeeding with them. It helps to know a few tricks and technological tools ... (See Resolutions)

Settling debts for half of what's owed isn't easy -- Banks aren't in the business of paying 100% and only getting 50% back ... (more)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates jump to 15.05 percent -- Dec. 23, 2015: Interest rates on new card offers rose to a one-year high this week after the Federal Reserve increased rates for the first time since 2006, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Credit score obsession: 7 signs you have one -- If easy access to your credit score has you checking it obsessively, it might be time to rethink your relationship with FICO ... (See Credit score obsession)

Financial problems span generations, so is debt in your DNA? -- Experts have both nature and nurture theories about how families' money problems are passed down through the years ... (See Debt passed down)

Disability income may be safe from business-debt collectors -- Credit card debt racked up for a now-defunct business may still be collectible, though the owner's disability payments are probably off limits ... (See Disability)

Options when 'written off' debt reappears on credit report -- Just because a debt is not listed on your credit report, doesn't mean you're not still responsible for it. Here are options to take care of the debt ... (See Written off debt)

Forecast: Card delinquency, debt levels to remain healthy -- According to the credit bureau TransUnion's forecast, credit card consumers will continue behaving 'extremely well' ... (See Debt, delinquency forecast)

Trended data: the new way credit bureaus rate you -- Lenders now see how you pay your bills, not just whether you pay them ... (See Trended data)

Rate survey: Average card rate increases to 14.99 percent -- Dec. 16, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers inched up this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Game plans for avoiding bad-credit stereotypes -- Even if you're not borrowing money, you risk being tagged with bad-credit stereotypes at work, at home and in your relationships ... (See Bad credit game plans)

Police report needed to fix credit after mom steals child's ID -- Filing it will allow credit bureaus to repair damage from parental identity theft ... (See ID theft)

'Smart chip' debit cards transition going slowly -- Chips are coming to debit cards, too, but even slower. Here are the seven things you need to know about the transition. ... (See EMV debit cards)

An 'accountability team' can support your debt payoff efforts -- Sharing your debt payoff plan with others can help you stay on track while you tackle that financial goal ... (See Accountability team)

After bankruptcy and depression, reach for financial help -- With debts and worries piled high, it's time to stop trying to handle all the problems and seek financial guidance ... (See Financial help)

Number of new cards soars, but credit limits tight -- An American Bankers Association survey finds subprime borrowers regaining access to credit, but not to a lot of it ... (See New accounts soar)

Rebuilding credit? Go easy on new accounts -- When working to rebuild your credit, open and maintain only two or three new cards. Any more could hurt more than helpp ... (See Credit rebuilding)

Rate survey: Average card rates rise to 14.98 percent -- Dec. 9, 2015: A Interest rates on new credit card offers rose this week for the first time in almost two months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Weekly rate report, Dec. 9, 2015)

Poll: 1 in 5 debtors say they'll be in debt forever -- It's a debt dichotomy: More say they'll die in debt, yet an increasing number also say they're debt-free ... (See Debt forever)

Credit utilization: How this key scoring factor works -- This credit utilization ratio is the second-most important factor used to calculate a borrower's score. Here's how it works ... (See Credit utilization)

Can I get away with maxing out my credit, filing for bankruptcy? -- Deliberatly maxing out cards with no intent to pay, then filing for bankruptcy could give a "fresh start." But it's a big risk, and morally dubious ... (See Max out)

How partial debt payments affect your credit, your legal rights -- Old debts fall off your credit reports in 7.5 years no matter what you do, but a partial payment may lengthen your vulnerability to a collections lawsuit ... (See Partial payments)

US report: CARD Act saved consumers $16 billion -- The U.S. Credit CARD Act has cleaned up the worst practices in the business since it was signed in 2009, but tricks and traps remain, consumer bureau report says ... (See CARD Act report)

Rehabilitating student loan won't raise score immediately -- It takes seven years to erase the credit score damage of a default, but don't let that deter you; the benefits begin right away ... (See Rehabilitate)

Prepaid card and gift card statistics -- Use of general purpose reloadable prepaid cards is increasing among high-income Americans, and gift cards continue to top wish lists. Just two of the insights in the data our team has compiled on prepaid and gift cards ... (See Gift card stats)

Parental conservators can block access to finances, credit -- Parents took over legal responsibility for son in credit card debt, filing bankruptcy on his behalf, and preventing him from getting credit on his own ... (See Conservators)

Know your risk before giving credit card to a relative -- A sister's request to give her a credit card for three months requires close examination, since you'll be on the hook ... (See Card for a relative)

Options for getting a handle on a $37,000 debt -- With a good income but lots of debt, a 72-year old single woman needs to plug the money leak first ... (See Debt options)

Options limited when paying bills for relative in coma -- Trying to do the right thing - pay a comatose relative's card bill - is nearly impossible without legal authority ... (See Pay relative's bills)

Fed: Access to credit cards increasing -- Fewer applicants rejected for new cards, but issuers stingy with credit limit increases ... (See Credit access)

Average card rates remain at 14.96 percent: Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Nov. 18, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers held steady Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Weekly rate report, Nov. 18, 2015)

Charging bills can help your score if you pay early, often -- Avoid interest charges and debt by paying in full, and keep your credit utilization low by paying more than once a month ... (See Charging bills)

Card debt is under control for the 2015 holidays -- U.S. consumers show an appetite for borrowing but their balances and late payments are low, a report from the big credit bureau shows ... (See Card debt report)

Business cards usually require a personal guarantee -- The small-business credit card that doesn't require good personal credit is an often-sought but seldom spotted myth ... (See Business card)

When you get a windfall, pay debts in full to restore credit -- Use that windfall to pay debts off; a partial settlement will be taxable and bog down your score ... (See Debt and windfall)

Don't agree to debt repayment you can't afford -- Stick to your budget and your guns when dealing with pushy debt collectors ... (See Debt collection)

Rating fraud: Not all security breaches are equal -- Different types of fraud have different risks involved. Knowing those risks might save you a headache ... (See Fraud risk)

How hard and soft inquiries affect your credit score -- Credit inquiries can be either soft or hard, and your credit score can suffer damage if you drop too many hard inquiries into it ... (See Credit inquiries)

Rate survey: Average card rates fall to 14.96 percent -- Nov. 11, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers tumbled Wednesday for the first time in almost nine months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Closing only card means no score, no mortgage -- With no credit activity, no credit score can be generated, which eliminates the possibility of you being approved for a mortgage ... (See No score, no mortgage)

Younger borrowers closing delinquency gap -- Younger people have higher expectations of missing a debt payment, survey finds ... (See Young borrowers' delinquency )

Take care closing card accounts before mortgage application -- If you're not careful with your charging habits, closing card accounts can hurt your chances of getting a mortgage ... (See Closing cards before mortgage)

Mortgage after bankruptcy, divorce: You need time -- Low mortgage rates will not be available immediately after filing for bankruptcy. But patience and credit-building will help in getting a loan at a decent rate ... (See Mortgage after bankruptcy )

Watchdog agencies announce debt collection crackdown -- Federal and state regulators announced a coordinated effort to fight a growing tide of debt collection abuses ... (more)

Survey: Average card rate sits tight at 15.01% -- Nov. 4, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers held firm Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

With low-limit cards, watch credit utilization closely -- Building your credit with a $300 limit card means if you buy a big-ticket item, don't wait, send in an extra payment ... (See Low limit card utilization)

Beyond bankruptcy: What happens when you fail Chapter 13 -- Americans who file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy are more likely than not to fail completing the debt repayment plan. Understanding why, and what comes next, can help you avoid common pitfalls ... (See Fail at bankruptcy)

How long negative information stays on a credit report -- Late fees will not affect a credit score, while a late payment history will -- at least, until it drops off a credit report in seven years ... (See Negative credit information)

Rate survey: Average card rates remain at 15.01 percent -- Oct. 28, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained in place Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Card issuer unlikely to hold a grudge for very old debt -- Once bad payment history falls off a credit report, card issuers are more likely to approve credit ... (See Issuer grudge)

Balancing need to save against urge to earn rewards -- Consider your spending habits and self-discipline to create a plan that you can stick to ... (See Rewards)

How paying more than the minimum helps build credit -- Paying more than the minimum is good not only for your credit, but for your entire financial well-being ... (See Minimum payment)

8 myths surrounding bankruptcy -- Filing for bankruptcy is a huge financial step, and many jump in with misconceptions of what it will and won't do ... (See Bankruptcy myths)

Maxed-out card blocks entry to 800 credit score 'club' -- One card with a high utiliization is enough to prevent a good credit score from becoming nearly perfect ... (See 800 club)

Average card rates hold steady at 15.01 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Oct. 21, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers stayed still Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates stay at 15.01 percent)

Mystery bill may signal error, memory failure or fraud -- If an unknown credit card bill shows up in your mailbox, it's time to take a closer look at what is on your credit report ... (See Mystery credit card bill)

Payday lender prepaid cards: the worst plastic in the world? -- Payday lender cards "feature" a slew of gotchas and fees -- even for on-time payments ... (See Payday loan prepaid cards)

Getting a credit card after bankruptcy can help credit score -- A post-bankruptcy credit card is one step toward restoring your credit score, but there are others, too ... (See Credit after bankruptcy)

The scariest things on your credit report -- Avoid a credit scare by seeing what lurks in your credit reports ... (See Credit report)

Closing a new card won't undo credit score hit -- Even if you haven't used the card, you've suffered ding to your score already. Why not keep it, since it may be of use? ... (See Credit score)

Rate survey: Average card rates increase to 15.01 percent -- Oct. 14, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers rose Wednesday for the first time since June, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Author argues have-nots better served by postal banking -- In "How the Other Half Banks," law professor Mehrsa Baradaran says the best bank for the poor already has branches, and blue boxes, everywhere ... (See Postal banking)

Using business's tax ID is no shortcut to building credit -- When it comes to credit, most business is personal ... (See Business credit)

Card rate too high? Negotiate a better one or transfer balance -- If you've been paying on time for a long time, you shouldn't be stuck with a 29 percent APR. Ask for a lower one; if they say no, transfer the balance ... (See Rate's too high)

How late payments get reported to credit bureaus -- First comes the late fee; if you still don't pay your score takes a hit ... (See Late payments)

Survey: Average card APR remains at 15% for record 16th week -- Oct. 7, 2015: Interest rates on new card offers remained cemented in place for another record-breaking week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (more)

Repeat balance transfers cut debt, but control spending, too -- To really eliminate debt, you have to do more than transfer debt from one 0 percent credit card to another ... (See Repeat balance transfers)

Even paid-off cards usually canceled in bankruptcy -- If a card has no balance, you'll still end up losing it ... (See Credit cards during bankruptcy)

Card tips for rebuilding credit after bankruptcy -- After bankruptcy, how many cards will it take to rebuild credit scores? ... (See Credit scores)

Why bankruptcy of the rich and famous is nothing like yours -- How the rich and famous stay wealthy post-bankruptcy while regular folks who file don't ... (See Bankruptcy)

Getting a second balance transfer card harder than the first -- You got a balance transfer card, but for only part of your debt. Your odds of getting a second card are good, but will nip again at your credit score ... (See 2nd balance transfer)

How to squeeze the last dollar out of gift cards -- An estimated $750 million in unused gift card money was lost in 2014. Here is how you can avoid that fate ... (See Squeezing gift cards)

After 10 years abroad, credit record must be restarted -- Even the most pristine credit record will be erased by a decade of inactivity. Starting over will require patience and work. Here's how. ... (See Rebuilding credit)

5 ideas to deal with your betrothed's debt before marriage -- If your beloved carries significant credit card debt, it's likely to figure into your marriage in some way. Take steps now to handle the emotional and financial aspects ... (See Engaged, in debt)

Cards have no built-in policies that pay off after death -- You can buy add-on insurance to pay the debt after you die, but it's usually not worth the price ... (See Debt after death)

Money epiphanies: Hearing, heeding the call to change -- People who were deep in debt or just needed to change describe their powerful money moments ... (See Money epiphanies)

Wife has lower score, but gets better prescreened card offers -- Her husband's credit score is over 800, so why are issuers ignoring him? ... (See Scores)

Survey: Average card APR sits tight at 15% for 13th week -- Sept. 16, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers still aren’t moving, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Authorized users don't have to share credit reports -- Getting added to another's card doesn't mean they are privy to your private information ... (See Authorized user)

A 29.99% card APR is too high, even with bad credit -- Spurn that really bad offer, try these other credit-building methods first ... (See APR too high)

Video: 4 ways students can build credit -- Building a credit history while in college helps make life afterward a bit easier. Here are four tips to building credit as a student ... (See Student credit)

Minimizing score damage after a charge-off -- Having credit card accounts closed and charged off will cause a huge credit score drop, and it could get worse if you don't take steps ... (See Rebuild score after charge-off)

Survey: Card rates stuck at 15 percent for a record 12th week -- Sept. 9, 2015: For a record 12th week, interest rates on new credit card offers remained stuck in place, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Debt can be voided if signer was a minor -- Unpaid medical bills can generally be disputed if incurred before the age of 18 ... (See Minors)

Basics of minimum payments -- If your minimum payment is $50 but you owe $25, just pay the $25 ... (more)

Don't ignore summons for unpaid card debt -- You may have nothing to fork over, but not responding can cause further damage ... (See Summons)

Video: 3 questions to ask before refinancing your student loans -- As the amount of student loan debt continue to rise, borrowers weigh the risks and benefits of refinancing ... (See Student loans)

5 questions every authorized user should ask -- "Piggybacking" -- being added as an authorized user -- is usually a credit-boosting gift, but needs to be looked over carefully first ... (See Authorized user)

Survey: Average card rates remain fixed at 15 percent -- Sept. 2, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged again this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

You did WHAT to pay off your debt? -- From selling plasma to leaving the country, these debt payoff stories should inspire ... (See Debt payoff)

Debt collection abuse goes both ways -- While many debtors lie in fear of debt collectors, that angst goes both ways ... (See Debt collection abuse)

Smart balance transfer: Do the math, change your spending habits -- Don't throw away the savings a balance transfer offers by continuing to overspend on cards ... (See Smart balance transfer)

Survey: Average card APR remains at 15 percent for 10th week -- Aug. 26, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged again this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Collectors have numerous ways to get money from entrepreneur -- Some small-business owners don't get regular paychecks, which makes it harder for debt collectors to garnish their wages. But they can still find other ways to collect ... (See Business debt)

How a car repossession affects your credit -- Between late payments and collections, a repo can cause a 100-point score drop ... (See Repossession)

Explain medical debt with 100-word statement -- You should add a 100-word statement to your credit report explaining your late payment due to medical debt -- but don't forget to remove it later ... (more)

How average credit account age affects your FICO score -- The average age of the various types of credit plays a significant part in determining your credit score ... (See Age of credit accounts)

Survey: Average card rates hold steady at 15% for 9th week -- Aug. 19, 2015: Average credit card interest rates remained cemented in place Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Buying a car with no credit: 6 things to know -- Even with bad or no credit it is possible to get a vehicle. Here are 6 keys to know before you make your purchase ... (See Car loan with no credit)

Study: 8 in 10 Americans saddled with some form of debt -- Findings of a study by the Pew Charitable Trusts suggest younger generations are growing more wary of borrowing ... (See Pew debt study)

Household debt report: Credit card balances highest since 2010 -- Balances on credit cards climbed to their highest mark in several years in the second quarter, according to a new government report, reinforcing other signs that card use is climbing as the economy strengthens ... (See Household debt)

Survey: Average card rates stay at 15 percent for 8th week -- Aug. 12, 2015: Average credit card interest rates remained at 15 percent Wednesday for the 8th consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Help your score rebound after card issuer closes account -- Ways to recover your score after losing an open credit line ... (See Closed card)

5 reasons you need good credit in retirement -- You may be about to retire but your credit isn't -- and shouldn't. ... (See Retirement)

Clearing authorized card user account information -- The simplest way to remove negative information generated from an authorized user account is to be removed from the account ... (See Authorized user)

How banks limit the size of your balance transfer -- You may see a balance transfer to a 0-percent card as a way out of debt, but to the bank, it's new credit and you have to qualify for it ... (See Balance transfer)

Rate survey: Average card rate sits tight at 15 percent -- Aug. 5, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers held still this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Co-owner's personal bankruptcy clouds your business credit -- Think twice before applying for personal credit for your business if your partner can't manage money well ... (See Co-owner bankruptcy)

Where to turn for help with overwhelming debt -- When bankruptcy and debt settlement sound like bad ideas, where else can you ask for help? ... (See Credit counseling)

Credit card delinquencies improve despite economic chill -- U.S. consumers improved their on-time payment performance on credit card bills during the first quarter, despite shrinkage in the economy ... (See Delinquency statistics)

Credit card use and availability statistics -- How available is credit for U.S. consumers and how are we using it? Our research team investigates the trends in statistics ... (See Card use statistics)

Rate survey: Average APR lodged at 15 percent for 6th straight week -- July 29, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers were left unchanged again this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Mom steals ID, racks up debt, ruins daughter's credit -- Reluctant to turn her mom in, a daughter now faces thousands in debt that she can't repay ... (See Theft)

Business at risk in personal bankruptcy -- In both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you may have to give up your business, even if it's failing ... (See Bankruptcy)

Be cautious with new credit when considering bankruptcy -- Getting a new credit card when you're about to file bankruptcy is rarely a wise idea ... (See Considering bankrputcy)

Secured card may be best when on a fixed income -- With your deposit as your credit line, you can't spend more than what you can repay ... (See Secured card)

Video: What to say (and NOT say) to debt collectors -- When a debt collector calls, you may be tempted to lose your cool. This video shows you how to handle that dreaded phone call ... (See When debt collectors call)

Tips to boost credit score enough to qualify for a mortgage -- Low and mismanaged credit can be bumped up by taking these three credit card actions ... (See Improve score)

Rate survey: Average card rate remains stuck at 15 percent -- July 22, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers stayed in place again this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

How a balance transfer card can boost FICO score -- Opening a new line of credit can boost your rating by reducing your overall debt-to-credit-limit ratio ... (See Balance transfer)

You've paid off your debt. Now what? -- Being debt-free comes with new disposable income. Here’s how to manage it. ... (See Debt-free)

Business debt caused by partner's con? You're still on the hook -- A business owner must pay credit card debt he owes, even though it was caused by an ex- business partner's shenanigans ... (See Business debt)

What to do if you fail your debt management plan -- DMPs help you dig your way out of debt, but it's not for everyone ... (See DMP)

Can too many cards lead to loan rejection? -- According to FICO, there is no such thing as a penalty for too much unused credit ... (See Rejection)

Video: Debt collector calling? Know your rights -- Find out what a debt collector can and cannot say when they call you ... (See Debt collector)

Rate survey: Average card rate remains at 15 percent -- July 15, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged again this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

The upside of an adverse action notice -- An adverse action notice provides insight into building a brighter financial future ... (See Adverse action)

Don't let new card's annual fee take you by surprise -- When applying for a new card, take the time to review its fee structure before you sign up ... (See Fees)

3 ways to strengthen weak or nonexistent credit -- Building up your credit will take work and time. But knowing where to get started is key ... (See Strengthening credit)

Build credit before house hunting -- The desire to own a home may be strong, but with no credit, it's just a dream ... (See Home buying)

Credit scores recover quickly from short-term debt -- If a brief, big debt surge is necessary, do it. Eating up your credit limit will hurt your credit score, but you can recover quickly with no lingering damage ... (See Short-term debt)

Chase refunds $50 million in robo-signing settlement -- Chase agreed to refund money and drop thousands of court judgments it won against cardholders in poorly documented lawsuits ... (See Chase robo-signing settlement)

Survey: Average card rates remain at 15 percent for a 3rd week -- July 1, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained untouched this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Canceling card doesn't wipe out charges for recurring services -- Once you allow recurring charges, they're tough to turn off, but canceling a card will just risk damaging your credit score and won't erase your obligation to pay ... (See Recurring charges)

Statute of limitations doesn't wipe credit slate clean -- Once a debt has passed the statute of limitations, that doesn't mean it gets wiped off your credit report ... (See Old debts)

Rate survey: Average card rates hold steady at 15 percent -- July 1, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers held still this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Volume of credit cards finally back up near pre-recession levels -- As of the fourth quarter of 2014, the total number of open credit card accounts, and the volume of new cards being issued, are both nearing the 2008 levels ... (See Credit card volume)

Video: Protecting your child from ID theft -- A child's identity is much more valuable to thieves than an adult's because the theft will often go undetected for years. Here are steps you can take to protect your child from identity theft ... (See Child ID theft)

Don't fall for Internet loan scam out of desperation -- After bankruptcy, your choices for personal loans will be limited, but don't make a bad one ... (See Online loan scam)

Getting US loan after living abroad not easy -- Without a current credit history and score, and after living abroad for years, getting bank approval for a U.S. loan is tricky ... (See Loan)

3 quick, easy, inexpensive credit score rebuilding tools -- Paying off all your debt at once will help, but it won't rebuild a slumping credit score by itself. To speed the process, add some new, positive loan payment history. Here's how ... (See Credit rebuilding)

Rate survey: Average card APR rises to 15 percent -- June 24, 2015: Average APR on new card offers inched up this week for the first time in over a month, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

For uncontrolled spenders, cash-only may be the right lifestyle -- Despite the benefits of credit cards -- convenience, purchase guarantees and rewards -- plastic is simply too convenient for some consumers to handle. If you're one of them it may be time to switch to a cash-only lifestyle ... (See Cash-only)

Score impact of maxing out 3rd line of credit -- Maxing out credit cards is never a good idea, but as long as you pay them off quickly, your score will rebound ... (See Maxing out cards)

Rebuilding credit? Semisecured card may help -- A semisecured card offers better terms than a secured card and can be a good stepping stone on the road to a conventional credit card ... (See Semi-secured)

Are you living with an identity thief? -- Deleted computer search histories and mysterious packages arriving in the mail can point to a fraudster living under your roof ... (See Fraudster)

Don't ignore divorce decree debt mandate -- If the court says you're liable for a debt, even if the bank says you're not, pay up or expect to face a contempt charge ... (See Divorce)

The facts behind debt reduction methods -- How your credit score is affected by a debt reduction plan depends on what type of action you are taking. It helps to know the facts before choosing a method ... (See Debt reduction)

Average card rates remain at 14.99 percent for fifth week -- June 17, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained cemented in place Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate reports)

Your 3 options when consolidating card debt -- A balance transfer, bank loan and debt management plan can all work to consolidate big credit card debts, but only one will be right for you ... (See Consolidate)

Credit counselors turn to student debt -- Agencies that help people erase card debt are retooling, but not everyone thinks they have the solution to student loan woes ... (See Student debt)

Chasing rewards points backfires when debt piles up -- If a family member who's an authorized user racks up debt on a rewards card, there may be other, less-traditional options for getting it paid back ... (See Chasing rewards)

Credit score still damaged after report error fixed -- A "rapid rescore" won't fix a credit issue, but digging deeper into the credit score issue will help ... (See Credit score fix)

Average card rates remain stuck at 14.99 percent -- June 10, 2015: The national average APR for new credit card offers remained locked in place Wednesday for the fourth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Your daughter ran up the debt, she should pay it -- As a student with no income, your daughter shouldn't have been issued a card. But she did, and she used it, so she should deal with it ... (See Pay debt)

Mom with dementia sued for card debt -- By the time a credit card issuer files a lawsuit for unpaid debt, it's already late in the debt-collection process, but you still have options ... (See Dementia)

How credit mix is calculated in FICO scores -- Having a variety of credit - a good "credit mix" - is the last and often overlooked component to the FICO score formula, but is still vital to a good score ... (See Credit mix)

Paying off multiple 0-percent cards, all with balances -- One good thing: The math is easy since you don't have interest to worry about ... (See 0-percent)

Rate survey: Average card rates don’t budge -- June 3, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

2015 Cash Advance Survey: Convenient cash will cost you plenty -- Credit card cash advances are convenient, but use with caution: Such transactions come with surprising extra costs, according to a new CreditCards.com survey of 100 cards' cash advance policies ... (See Cash advance survey)

Top 10 phone scams to watch out for -- Phone scams are No. 1 choice of communication for fraudsters looking to cash in on unwitting consumers, and the phony credit card rate reduction is the No. 1 scam ... (See 10 scams)

Fixing damaged credit? First, create a budget -- In fixing damaged credit, regular payments are a must, and you have to get a budget before you can know what you can afford to pay ... (See Budget)

How finance companies differ from credit cards, banks -- Consumer finance companies offer an alternative way to pay for big-ticket items. But look before you leap. ... (See Finance companies)

To boost score, let credit utilization guide your debt payoff -- For the best credit score boost, neither the debt snowball nor the 'highest rate' method is best. Instead, let credit utilization guide your payment allocation ... (See Debt payoff plan)

Credit card interest rates remain unchanged at 14.99 percent -- May 27, 2015: Average rates on new card offers lingered at 14.99 percent Wednesday after increasing the previous week to their highest point in more than 6 months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Credit card delinquency statistics -- Our team has compiled statistics on U.S. credit card delinquencies over the years, collections, bankruptcies and much more ... (See Delinquency stats)

Debt problems plague troops after military service ends -- Returning military service members often face a barrage of personal finance problems ... (See Troops)

Reporting stolen cards on someone else's behalf -- If a friend or relative has lost track of credit cards, you can help, but only in a limited way ... (See Help)

Finally got a zero balance? Good! Now change credit strategy -- After paying off retail cards and shedding all debt, don't slam the door on credit. Keep accounts open and maybe use one occasionally to keep your score up ... (See Paid off)

Survey: Employees less likely to borrow on cards for necessities -- A fifth of employees have to borrow on their credit cards to pay for monthly necessities, a study by PwC shows, but overall, workers' financial wellness is improving ... (See Employees' financial wellness)

Rates jump to 14.99 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- May 20, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers rose Wednesday to their highest point in more than six months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates jump to 14.99%)

Card offer in someone else's name probably not ID theft -- Keep up your guard, but sometimes junk mail is just junk mail ... (See Junk mail)

How to combat 5 common female financial fears -- Female financial professionals describe the fiscal woes women typically shoulder and how they can be managed -- or avoided altogether ... (See Women's money fears)

Defaulted business cards result in tax liability -- Canceled business card debt can resurface as income owed to the IRS ... (See 1099-C)

Credit card interest rates stalled at 14.92 percent -- May 13, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers held firm this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

How to tell if a 'friend' stole your identity -- Sharing too much information with sketchy "friends" can put you at risk ... (See ID theft by "friend")

NY Fed: Debt in collection shrinks -- The percentage of accounts in collections and the average size of those debts both shrank, according to new data from the New York Fed. ... (See Debt in collections)

Banks to erase some bad debts on credit reports -- Chase, BofA promised to remove black marks related to debts that were extinguished in bankruptcy, under pressure from judge ... (See Erase debt)

After one spouse dies, card debt likely impacts the other -- If one spouse dies owing substantial credit card debt, the living spouse can feel the effect, even if it was a solo account not in a community property state ... (See Spousal debt after death)

Don't succumb to lure of debt settlement firm -- Don't pay someone to reduce your debts when you can do it yourself for free ... (See Debt settlement)

How mortgage settlements affect your score (and for how long) -- It's been years since the recession thrust millions of homeowners into default. If you've paid your other bills, maybe you can qualify for another mortgage ... (See Deed on report)

Credit card interest rates sit tight at 14.92 percent -- May 6, 2015: Interest rates on new card offers remain locked in place this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

7 tips for using online alternative business lenders -- When banks turn them down for loans, small businesses are increasingly turning to online "alternative" lenders. The loans they provide can be a lifeline, but higher interest rates mean you should proceed with caution ... (See Online alternative business loans)

Even for old debt, settling beats other options -- Even if the statute of limitations is almost up for an old debt, you're better off settling than ignoring the debt or declaring bankruptcy ... (See Settling old debt)

Debt shifting helps your score, but paying it off is better -- Using balance transfers to shift a pile of debt so it's evenly distributed across cards can help a credit score, but paying off the debt helps much more ... (See Debt shifting)

Average APR on new card offers remains at 14.92 percent -- April 29, 2015: Interest rates on new card offers held steady Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

12 surefire ways to create money and credit problems -- Want to run perpetually short on funds, rack up massive debts and decimate your credit score? Do these things and you are sure to succeed ... (See Problems)

Saving for laptop trumps financing 'deals' -- With a little motivation and patience, you can save hundreds by saving for that new laptop purchase instead of opting for a financing deal ... (See Saving versus borrowing)

6 tips for talking to your adult kids about your finances -- Older parents need to tell kids if they're financially fine, or in a bit of trouble. Here's how to do it with the minimum of shock and tears ... (See Family finances)

HELOC vs. cash-out refinance for card debt repayment -- Before you acquire a home equity line of credit or cash-out refinance on your mortgage to get out of debt, there are other determining factors to consider for what may seem like a great idea ... (See Out of debt)

For sudden debt at age 75, the strategy's different -- At age 75, with an unexpected $45,000 in post-divorce credit card debt, the strategies become different: Seek counseling, but consider cutting payments to the minimum ... (See Divorce debt)

401(k) accounts protected from collection -- After out-of-work husband runs up $30,000 on his wife's card, his wife wants to know if her 401(k) can be tapped for repayment ... (See Debt collection)

Why hard inquiries hurt your credit score -- Hard inquiries can be triggered after you have asked for more credit or by trying to rent an apartment. Once a inquiry hits, your score is knocked down a couple of points, and here is why ... (See Hard inquiry )

Create, restore credit with a credit-builder loan -- Credit-builder loans are small loans, made by some credit unions and a few banks, designed to help consumers establish or boost a credit profile ... (See Credit tool)

Average card APR increases to 14.92 percent -- April 22, 2015: Average rate on new card offers increased this week to the highest point this year, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

ABA study: Card delinquency stays low -- Despite an uptick at the end of 2014, delinquencies for credit cards issued by banks remained well below the 15-year average, American Bankers Association research shows ... (See Card delinquency)

Alternative lenders offer cheaper loans for more of your data -- If you're looking for a low rate loan, new startups are filling that gap, but require more data than what's on your credit report ... (See Alternative loans)

If you must pay less than the minimum, call and explain -- If it's short-term problem, take the initiative and call. If it's a long-term problem, get credit counseling ... (See Less than minimum)

Pay for delete: A shady credit-report cleanup practice -- If a collection is bringing your credit score down, making a deal with the collection agency could get it taken off. However, this might not be as easy as it sounds ... (See Pay-for-delete)

Your low-limit secured card strategy: Pay the bill early, often -- When you have a low limit card and want to build your credit score, time your payments so your credit utilization is lowest on the statement date, since that's when your issuer reports to the credit bureaus ... (See Pay early, often)

Credit card interest rates stay put at 14.9 percent -- April 15, 2015: Average rates on new card offers didn't budge this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

How debt management plans affect your credit -- If severely in debt and behind on payments, your credit score is already hurting. Entering into a debt management plan can only help by showing timely payments ... (See DMP)

Paying a time-barred debt before mortgage application -- If an old unpaid debt is causing you to doubt whether to apply for a mortgage, see if it's gone beyond the collectible stage ... (See Time-barred debt)

8 ways to sidestep high-cost medical debt -- If you are diagnosed with a serious illness, medical bills might be high on your list of worries, but taking action early instead of later can keep your finances in the pink ... (See Medical debt)

Card interest rates remain at 14.9 percent for third week -- April 8, 2015: The average APR on new card offers remained at 14.9 percent Wednesday for the third consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Canceled cards boost debt utilization ratio -- When you cut several cards from your wallet, you can reduce a big credit score hit by increasing the credit limits on your remaining cards ... (See Credit limits)

How to check your child's credit report -- With a few exceptions, children shouldn't have credit reports. If they do, it could be an indication of fraud. Here's how to find out ... (See Child)

Authorized user must close deceased's account and move on -- After her husband dies, a widow who is an authorized user on his account must notify the card company of the death and open her own account ... (See Authorized user)

Average APR on new card offers holds steady at 14.9 percent -- April 1, 2015: The national average APR on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Bad-check collectors come under fire -- Debt collector posing as prosecutor gets hit with federal regulator's crackdown ... (See Bad-check collectors)

Banks become more generous with card credit limits -- Credit card issuers are showing their confidence in consumers and the economy by boosting the number of card offers and the size of their credit limits, says a banking trade group report ... (See Credit limits increase)

Near retirement age is the worst time to raid 401(k) -- When in your 50s, with retirement in sight, don't use your 401(k) as a piggy bank for a child's college and to pay off card debt. You need a financial plan more than a quick cash fix ... (See Near retirement)

Payday loan alternatives more important than ever -- Having an alternative to high-priced payday lenders -- always a good idea -- could become more so if a federal crackdown shutters some storefronts ... (See Payday alternatives)

Husband opened cards, ran up debt in your name? It's fraud -- After her husband racked up thousands on cards he opened in her name, step one in cleaning up the mess is reporting his fraud ... (See Husband fraud)

Length of credit history matters more when you're young -- When new to credit, it takes time to boost the length of your credit history. With each new account opening, you cut your average age of accounts, so open new cards sparingly ... (See Young credit)

Average credit card interest rate increases to 14.9 percent -- March 25, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers inched up this week for the first time in nearly five months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

New rules proposed for payday loans -- The federal consumer watchdog is preparing rules that are expected to fight repeat payday loans without shutting borrowers off from quick cash ... (See Payday loans)

7 debts you may not have to pay -- Paying your debts is honorable, and usually a legal requirement, but there exceptions when it can be erased, or it wasn't really yours to start with ... (See Debt escape)

New business shouldn't inherit partner's old debt -- Your new business partner's old debt shouldn't be inherited unless expressly assumed, but have a lawyer check it and be aware it may limit your new venture's access to credit ... (See Partner's debt)

If your credit's all grown up, ditch that $300 'starter card' -- If that $300 "starter card" you got as a credit whippersnapper hasn't evolved with you, get rid of it and enjoy the benefits that come with a higher-limit grown-up card ... (See Starter card)

1099-C snarls mortgage qualifying -- An incomplete tax form and an old charged-off debt may cause mortgage underwriters to turn down your home loan application ... (See Mortgage qualifying )

Credit card interest rates hold steady at 14.87 percent -- March 18, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers held firm Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Bankruptcy should be removed automatically from credit reports -- The notation that you have filed a Chapter 13 or Chapter 7 bankruptcy should be deleted automatically from your credit reports after seven or 10 years -- but you better check ... (See Bankruptcy)

Applying repeatedly for credit after being turned down makes it worse -- If your response to being turned down for credit has been to apply over and over again, stop. You're making it worse. Before you do anything else, find out why ... (See Stop applying)

5 financial tips for the newly engaged -- Planning your future finances should be equally as important as planning your nuptials, experts agree. Here are five money tips to remember when you and your partner start a life together ... (See Engaged finances)

Debt relief scam mars victim's credit rating -- Debt relief scams often tell victims to stop paying debt accounts, leaving their credit rating in shambles due to defaults and delinquencies ... (See Debt relief scam)

How credit score formula handles multiple credit inquiries -- FICO uses a 30-day buffer and a process called "deduplication" on multiple inquiries for a mortgage or car loan, in effect counting them as one. But that doesn't apply to credit card shopping ... (See Multiple inquiries)

Credit card interest rates hold at 14.87% for third week -- March 11, 2015: The national average APR for new card offers remained unchanged Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Payoff order for multiple cards: Which one first? -- With multiple cards to pay off, you can tackle the one with the highest rate or lowest balance. Choose the method you'll stick with ... (See Payoff plan)

Sharing a card with a parent can be risky -- Being an authorized user on your elderly mom's card can either help or hurt your credit rating, depending on how well she manages credit ... (See Parent's card)

Boosting credit after a discharged bankruptcy -- A Chapter 7 bankruptcy will stay on your credit years after discharge, but if you make payments on time and use credit wisely, your score will start to increase ... (See Discharged)

Credit card interest rates stay at 14.87 percent -- March 4, 2015: Average rates on new card offers held steady Wednesday at 14.87 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Recovery from bad credit: 1st steps -- Restoring your credit after letting all debts go into default takes resolve and a bit of negotiation savvy. These steps will help you get back on track ... (See Credit recovery)

Carrying a balance? No rewards card for you! -- Interest costs far outweigh any rewards offered by credit cards, so prioritize paying off your balances before thinking about earning rewards ... (See No rewards)

Credit card debt at root of collection complaints -- Credit card balances are a dwindling piece of debt collection work, but they remained a top source of consumer complaints in 2014 ... (See Collection complaints)

Looking for credit after Chapter 7 bankruptcy -- Go slow, because issuers don't want to give credit right away to someone who filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Secured cards are one credit-rebuilding alternative ... (See Credit after bankruptcy)

How to fight phantom-debt collectors -- Callers with details about you and your debts can be convincing, so it pays to know how to tell a legitimate collector from a phantom-debt scam ... (See Phantom debt)

An insider's view: How FICO scores burst from secrecy -- Creditcards.com columnist and former FICO official Barry Paperno recounts how credit scores went public, and why they're as confusing as ever ... (See FICO history)

Credit card interest rates drop to 14.87 percent -- Feb. 25, 2015: Average rates on new card offers fell Wednesday for the first time in nearly two months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Tougher rules coming for debt collectors -- Federal regulators are writing a major update of debt collection rules for the first time in decades, but the penalty will remain a wrist-slap ... (See Debt collection rules)

Study: Law creates many too broke to file for bankruptcy -- A decade after a federal bankruptcy reform law took effect, a new class of Americans has been created: the permanently insolvent ... (See Too broke for bankruptcy)

How a balance transfer can help with a large debt -- With $16,500 of debt on a single card, the best options are to find the best possible balance transfer deal, or get involved in a debt management program ... (See Balance transfer)

Collectors still calling after a 1099-C 'Cancellation of Debt' tax form -- Just because you received a 1099-C and may have paid taxes on an unpaid debt, that doesn't mean you're free from collection attempts ... (See 1099-C)

7 exceptions to 'zero liability' policies -- Despite "zero liability" promises from credit card companies and protection from federal laws, there are instances where you might be on the hook for fraudulent credit and debit card charges ... (See Zero liability)

Help your credit score rebound after a fall -- If you're whittling debt and paying bills on time after a credit score tumble, your credit scores should improve fairly quickly. If they aren't, something else is wrong ... (See Score rebound)

Credit card interest rates stay at 14.89 percent for 7th straight week -- Feb. 18, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers stayed put again this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Quickly opening, closing accounts makes scores dip a bit -- After following bad credit advice, a reader worries that by closing two cards she just opened, she did some irreparable damage to her credit score ... (See Credit score)

Dangers of applying for an online payday loan -- Considering an online payday loan? Don't. These sites often scatter your personal information to the Internet wind, opening you up to, at best, bad deals, and at worst, relentless fraudsters ... (See Online payday loans)

Raid retirement fund to pay off debt? Bad idea -- Raiding the retirement fund is so tempting when you're unemployed and racking up debt, but it's almost never the smart move ... (See Raid retirement)

Pay down debt before adding teen to card -- A mom who wants to add a 17-year-old to one of her card accounts should reconsider: Her daughter really doesn't need one, and Mom needs to get her own balances under control ... (See Adding teen to card)

Student loan debt regret: 12 do-over wishes from college grads -- Now saddled with heavy student loan debts, 12 grads share their regrets and offer tips on how future students can avoid the same big-ticket mistakes ... (See Student loan debt regrets)

Credit card interest rates remain at 14.89 percent for 6th week -- Feb. 11, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers remained stuck at 14.89 percent Wednesday for the sixth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

6 bad reasons to open a new card -- Take a look at six of the worst rationalizations for opening a credit card, and learn how to be a prudent plastic user. ... (See Bad reasons to open card)

5 steps to a mortgage-worthy credit profile -- You're ready to buy a home, but is your credit? Here are five steps to getting your credit and finances in tiptop shape ... (See Mortgage)

CFPB orders refunds for 98,000 subprime cardholders -- Cardholders of Continental Finance Co. are due refunds of excess fees that absorbed more than 25 percent of credit limit ... (See Continental Finance refunds)

Credit card interest rates stay at 14.89 percent for fifth week -- Feb. 4, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers held steady Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Help! I opened cards fraudulently, ran up big card debt -- At just 17, a young man fraudulently opens multiple card accounts without his parents' consent and says he's severely in debt. What are his options? ... (See Card debt)

ID theft means surprise loan denial -- The bank turned down his loan application due to his mortgage and five credit cards. Since he doesn't have any cards and rents a room, it's ID theft ... (See Denied loan)

How to defeat debt and still have fun -- With some creativity, you can pay off debts while still enjoying the occasional treat, gift or vacations ... (See Fun)

How rapid rescore works when applying for a mortgage -- If you have errors on your credit report that could block a mortgage application, choosing a rapid rescore option could help, if your lender offers it ... (See Rapid rescore)

Average card APR remains stuck at 14.89 percent -- Jan. 28, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers didn't budge this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Must husband pay wife's unpaid card debt? -- If a spouse with no income secretly runs up a big credit card debt, state laws dictate whether there's a shared legal obligation to pay ... (See Spousal debt)

Credit score statistics -- How does your credit score compare to the average American's? Check out the credit score statistics we've compiled, including the states with the highest and lowest credit scores, how credit scores change with age and much more ... (See Credit score statistics)

Unpaid joint car loan sullies ex's credit -- She was in charge of payments, but neglected to tell her fiance when they were late. Now that they've broken up, she wants to know if she can fix his credit ... (See Car loan)

Why the wealthy go broke, too -- When people with above-average incomes encounter financial hardships, the reasons are surprisingly similar to people with more modest incomes ... (See Broke)

What day is my card balance reported to the credit bureaus? -- Banks and credit bureaus manage millions of accounts and have different policies for recording data, so finding when yours is recorded isn't possible ... (See Card data)

Credit card interest rates remain at 14.89 percent for third week -- Jan. 21, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained at 14.89 percent Wednesday for the third consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Choosing a debt management program -- If you think you need credit counseling or a debt management program, look for services offered by a nonprofit, accredited organization ... (See Debt management program)

7 times to put yourself in credit card timeout -- There are key moments in life when putting away the cards and paying off any balances can be the best moves for your financial future ... (See Card timeout)

When building credit, focus first on on-time payments -- Don't overmanage your credit utilization while in a formal debt management plan. Just keep paying on time, every time and your score will rise over time ... (See On-time payment)

Credit card interest rates hold steady at 14.89 percent -- Jan. 14, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers remain unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Credit card delinquency rates rise slightly in 2014 -- Delinquent credit card balances rose slightly in the third quarter of 2014, but remain far below the 15 year average, says the American Bankers Association ... (See Credit card delinquency rates)

Automatic stays in bankruptcy stop debt collection immediately -- The automatic stay is the cornerstone of the bankruptcy process. By freezing collection actions it gives the consumer breathing room to figure out what to do next ... (See Automatic stays)

Don't default on co-signed loan to teach son a debt lesson -- Letting a car loan go into default to show a kid what happens is a lot like driving the car into a wall to show him what happens if you don't use the brakes ... (See Co-signers)

Credit card interest rates slide to 14.89 percent -- Jan. 7, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers fell Wednesday for the second straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Living on disability, with $8,000 in card debt -- With no assets and only disability income, repayment options are nonexistent and bankruptcy too expensive for a cardholder with $8,000 in card debt. ... (See Disabled)

Credit card interest rates fall to 14.91 percent -- Dec. 31, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers edged lower this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

9 baby steps that lead to big financial goals -- Breaking down big goals into baby steps makes them seem less overwhelming. We've come up with a few small actions to get on the path to financial health and sound credit ... (See Baby steps)

Travel cards' best signup point offers require excellent credit -- Most rewards cards are targeted at people with excellent credit -- with FICO scores of 750 and above. But if your credit is in the "good" range, you still have options ... (See Sign-up bonus score)

Secret financial escape plan for domestic violence victims -- It’s common for abusers to keep victims in the dark about household finances and to limit access to bank accounts, but using a bit of stealth can help build much-needed financial independence ... (See Escape)

There's no quick credit score fix -- Credit scoring formulas are as complicated as our often-tangled personal lives. There are no quick fixes, so keep your focus on the big things, such as on-time payments ... (See No quick fix)

Closed accounts affect your credit score, but maybe not how you think -- No matter who closes an account, the account holder or creditor, it will have an impact on a credit score. How much depends on the overall credit utilization ... (See Closed accounts)

Rates remain at 14.92 percent for 2nd week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Dec. 24, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Weekly Rate Report)

Card borrowing lags while student, auto loans soar -- Consumers are borrowing more to finance cards and college degrees, while credit card borrowing is stuck at 2003 levels, a Federal Reserve Bank of New York report shows ... (See Borrowing)

How many cards is too many? -- While there's no right number, you can go too far in either direction and end up hurting your credit score ... (See Too many cards)

Credit card interest rates decrease to 14.92 percent -- December 17, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers decline slightly to 14.92 percent this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Jobless grad with student loans, $29,000 card debt ponders bankruptcy -- A recent graduate not only has student loan payments, but card debt of almost $30,000 -- and no job. Is bankruptcy her only answer? ... (See Bankruptcy)

CFPB moves to soften medical debt's impact -- It's unique among debts, so medical debt deserves to get special scrutiny, the federal consumer watchdog agency decides ... (See Medical debt)

Average card rates rest at 14.95 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- December 10, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers held at 14.95 percent this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Tips to rebuild credit after living abroad -- After living overseas for five years, bringing a dormant U.S. credit file back to life takes a few smart moves combined with a little patience ... (See Rebuilding US credit)

Banks that make the most money, and the least, on credit card loans -- The most costly card companies are ones you probably never heard of -- but whose cards you just might carry ... (See Yields)

Inheritance spent, bankruptcy looming -- She inherited $36,000, but instead of paying her credit card debt, she spent it. During bankruptcy, does she have to reveal where the money went? ... (See Bankruptcy disclosure)

Credit card interest rates hold steady at 14.98 percent -- Nov. 26, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Hidden debt shouldn't hurt spouse's business credit -- A woman's personal debts should not endanger her husband's business credit. But the fact that she has hidden the debt from him signals other kinds of problems ... (See Debts)

If loan to friend or family goes bad, you may take a tax deduction -- When friends or family borrow from you and then default, the IRS allows a bad debt tax deduction -- if you documented the loan and file the right forms ... (See Bad debt deduction)

Lessons from cities with the best and worst credit scores -- One city is known for college grads, the other for cotton and the Blues. Measured by credit score, Mankato, Minnesota, and Greenwood, Mississippi, are as far apart financially as they are culturally ... (See Best, worst scores)

5 credit don'ts for homebuyers applying for mortgages -- When you're about to apply for a mortgage, tread lightly on making changes to your credit. Steps you think should be helpful could derail your loan ... (See Mortgage credit don'ts)

Credit card interest rates fall to 14.98 percent -- Nov. 19, 2014: Average rates on new card offers fell below 15 percent Wednesday for the first time in more than a year, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Ex didn't pay up, so your student loan defaulted? Go after him -- The court said he had to pay half of his ex-wife's student loan, but he shirked, and she isn't making enough, so now the loan's in default ... (See Default)

How trauma leads to destructive financial choices -- Child abuse. Warfare. Assault. If you have endured a life-threatening event, you may be more likely to make poor money decisions. ... (See Trauma)

'Hand to Mouth' author Linda Tirado: Broke means bad money decisions -- Former IHOP night cook-turned-author Linda Tirado explains in very frank terms why being poor often leads to making shortsighted financial decisions ... (See Hand-to-mouth)

5 steps to dispute debt caused by ID theft -- Take these steps to uncover all the damage left by an ID thief, contest the fraudulent debts and end a debt collector's scare tactics ... (See Disputing fraud)

Credit card interest rates slide to 15 percent -- Nov. 12, 2014: Average rates on new card offers declined this week for the first time in nearly two months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report Nov. 12, 2014)

Shared card leads to collection mess after a bankruptcy -- When Dad declared bankruptcy, the debt collectors shifted their attention to his daughter to collect a $3,600 balance on the credit card they shared ... (See Shared card)

2014 CreditCards.com Penalty Rate Survey -- Those who fall 60 days behind in credit card payments face an average penalty interest rate of 28.45 percent, according to CreditCards.com's survey of 100 major U.S. credit cards ... (See Penalty rates survey)

Steps to rebuild credit after bankruptcy -- After declaring bankruptcy obtaining secured credit sources and becoming an authorized user can help bring life back to your line of credit ... (See Bankruptcy)

Credit card interest rates remain at 15.09 percent -- Nov. 5, 2014: Average rates on new card offers held steady Wednesday at 15.09 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Options limited if authorized user refuses to pay charges -- Call it authorized-user blackmail: A daughter adds her dad to her card, he runs up the balance, but threatens to stop payments if she closes the card ... (See Authorized)

Credit card interest rates rise to 15.09 percent -- Oct. 29, 2014: Average rates on new card offers rose slightly Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Negotiation is key for defaulted student loan -- When a private student loan is in default, bringing the loan current may require a lump-sum payment as well as written proof of what you can afford to pay ... (See Default)

How a DUI can tank your credit -- While a conviction for driving under the influence won't show up directly on your credit report, the financial ramifications that follow a conviction can really flush your score ... (See DUI)

Charge-offs irreversible, even if co-signer not notified of debt -- When a widower is denied credit six months after his wife's death, he finds a charge-off on a co-signed account dropped his credit score almost 200 points ... (See Co-sign)

Credit card interest rates linger at 15.07 percent -- Oct. 22, 2014: Average rates on new card offers stayed at 15.07 percent this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates Report, Oct. 22, 2014)

How credit cards impact your credit score -- When it comes to your credit score, credit cards have the power to help you or hurt you; here are the main ways that you, your cards and your score intersect ... (See Credit score)

Co-signing backfire ruins chance to lease an apartment -- A kindhearted gesture backfires for a man who co-signed his sister-in-law's lease: She broke her lease, left a debt, ruined his credit and his ability to rent a new home ... (See Co-sign)

Q&A: 'Bad Paper' author Jake Halpern roams debt collection's Wild West -- Author Jake Halpern goes undercover as a debt collector and uncovers a world of rich characters, conflicts and unsavory behavior ... (See "Bad Paper")

Credit rehabilitation programs don't do anything you can't do -- The money you give to a credit rehabilitation company could be better spent paying down debt because what those companies do you can do yourself ... (See Credit rehab)

Credit card interest rates hold steady at 15.07 percent -- Oct. 15, 2014: Average rates on new card offers didn't budge this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

The good and the bad of credit account 'piggybacking' -- Authorized users can greatly benefit from being tagged in an account with a good credit score. But they can also be hurt if the account is not so great ... (See Piggybacking)

Credit card interest rates remain at 15.07 percent -- Oct. 8, 2014: Average rates on new card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

How to fix credit report damage from authorized user status -- A mom added her daughter as an authorized user to her card seven years ago, but then filed for bankruptcy. Her dad asks if it's too late to get the card off his kid's credit report ... (See Credit report)

The Unverzagt family's triumph over their credit card debit -- Selected as Clients Of The Year by the National Foundation of Credit Counseling, the 13-person Unverzagt family paid off their credit card debt in five years ... (See Debt-free)

Average credit card interest rates rise to 15.07 percent -- Oct. 1, 2014: Average rates on new card offers jumped this week to their highest point in nearly three years, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Credit reports hold longer memory than issuers -- You let a card go unpaid for years, then finally paid the account off. The odds of the card issuer remembering your behavior aren't as big as the credit bureaus ... (See Unpaid)

Study reveals rewards cards' rise in popularity -- Rewards cards now make up a majority of new accounts and spending on cards, practically taking over the market, a bank industry report says ... (See Rewards cards rise)

Forget the 30 percent credit utilization 'rule' - it's a myth -- When it comes to credit utilization and your credit score, a very low credit-to-borrowing ratio is best, and it's a myth that your score falls off a cliff once you hit 30 percent ... (See 30% myth)

Study: 7 percent of employees have wages garnished -- About 7 percent of workers had wages garnished in 2013, and workers age 35-44 are most likely to endure that stressful and sometimes humiliating fate ... (See Wage garnishment study)

Average card rates fall to 15.05 percent -- Sept. 24, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers dipped this week for the first time in more than five months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Credit card debt statistics -- Our team has compiled statistics on total U.S. credit card debt over the years, average credit card debt per cardholder and much more ... (See Credit card debt)

Pay-it-forward givers sometimes provide debt relief -- If someone does something nice for you, instead of returning the favor directly, you help someone else. It's called "paying it forward," and sometimes that help comes in the form of debt relief ... (See Pay it forward)

Odds slim when suing authorized user for unpaid debt -- You can go after a used-to-be friend in court for not paying you back for charges on your card. You could also ask nicely or write it off ... (See Suing an authorized user)

How leaving a tiny card balance each month affects credit score -- Keeping the balance-to-credit ratio low, paying in full and on time is a better way to get the most from your secured card ... (See $2 balance)

Rates remain stuck at 15.06 percent for fourth week -- Sept. 17, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers didn't budge this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate Report)

Be careful with inheritance, spending before bankruptcy filing -- If you're about to file for bankruptcy, what do you do when you know you're about to inherit some money? Can you spend it? ... (See Inheritance)

Credit card interest rates remain at 15.06 percent for 3rd week -- Sept. 10, 2014: Average credit card interest rates held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates average 15.06%)

Best ways to manage a secured card -- Before you apply for a secured card, it's best to know what fees will be charged and whether that card will be the best fit for your credit profile ... (See Secured cards)

Cardholder delinquency at lowest level in at least 7 years -- Just 1.16 percent of American cardholders were 90 days delinquent, according to quarterly data from the credit bureau TransUnion ... (See Delinquent cardholders)

Video: the road to wage garnishment -- Garnishment is complex -- the rules vary by state, your employment status and your income. But it all starts with a failure to pay bills on time ... (See Wage garnishment)

Credit card interest rates steady at 15.06 percent -- Sept. 3, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

How closing cards and student loans affects FICO scores -- Keeping cards active and paying loans on time is best way to maintain a strong credit score ... (See Credit scores)

Credit card interest rates grow to 15.06 percent -- Aug. 27, 2014: Average credit card interest rates rose this week for the first time in nearly two months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Seniors vulnerable to credit card fraud -- As people get older, even when they are intellectually still very sharp, it seems to become more difficult for them to determine who to trust and when ... (See Fraud)

Video: Why was my credit card application denied? -- Ever had your credit card application denied? No one likes rejection, but there are a few things you can do to improve your chances of being approved ... (See Rejected)

Interest rates remain locked at 15.03 percent for 7th week -- Aug. 20, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Credit card life after bankruptcy -- After bankruptcy, issuers will be wary of lending to you. Applying for a secured card is a way to boost your FICO score and show lenders you can be trusted again ... (See Bankruptcy)

6 signs of bad financial advice -- While good sound nuggets of money advice can help you keep money in your pocket, bad advice can leave you digging out of financial hole ... (See Advice)

Maxed out cards? Don't open another one -- She's maxed out five credit cards and can't pay what she owes on them, but asks if it's OK if she can use the new credit card she got ... (See Maxed out)

Credit card APRs remain flat at 15.03 percent -- Aug. 13, 2014: Average rates on new card offers remained at 15.03 percent Wednesday for the sixth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate Report Aug. 13, 2014)

8 ways to get friends to repay a personal loan -- A pal was in a bind and turned to you for help. Sensing urgency, you agreed, but now you're not getting repaid and your frustration is growing as fast as the excuses ... (See Repay)

FICO 9 credit score formula lessens impact of medical debt -- People with paid-off debt or medical debts will see scores rise with the new FICO math, while others will receive lower marks ... (See FICO formula)

Time-barred debt can still do damage even after 13 years -- Credit checks for mortgages go deep and collection efforts may restart, so even on a debt 13 years old, potential damage can linger ... (See Time-barred debt)

Card APRs locked at 15.03 percent for 5th week -- Aug. 6, 2014: Interest rates on new credit card offers held firm this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report Aug. 6)

Did Macy's ruin my credit when it closed, reopened my card account? -- A shopper is concerned that her credit score is ruined when Macy's closed her old card after issuing her a new one. Don't worry, Sally says ... (See Closed credit card)

Virtual debt collection lets you negotiate, settle up online -- With a computer or a smartphone, you can review a claim, set up a monthly repayment plan or even cut a debt settlement deal with an algorithm ... (See Virtual collection)

Rates remain at 15.03 percent for 4th week -- July 30, 2014: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained untouched this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates)

When is a bankruptcy officially discharged? -- The day you no longer are responsible for debt repayment after you file for bankruptcy depends on whether you filed under Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 ... (See Discharge)

6-year-old mystery debt suddenly appears on credit report? Erase it! -- Just before the statute of limitations expires, a negative item pops up on your credit report and the creditor can't supply an account number ... (See Surprise debt)

Rates remain at 15.03 percent for second week -- July 23, 2014: Interest rates on new card offers didn't budge this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Preapproved vs. pre-screened card offers: a big difference -- At first glance, a preapproval letter from a credit issuer can seem like an official invitation to a hot new nightclub. Yet when you arrive, you may be rudely turned away. ... (See Preapproved)

Tax lien won't impact shared credit card -- When adding someone with a tax lien to your card as an authorized user, that won't open any doors to the Internal Revenue Service ... (See Uncle Sam)

Collectors see less credit card debt -- Credit card holders are less likely to get calls from a debt collector than in the past, because collectors have less card debt to pursue, industry surveys say ... (See Debt)

Fewer Americans are delinquent on their bank cards -- Consumers' bank card delinquencies, already at historically low levels, dropped further in the first quarter of 2014. The American Bankers Association says it's a sign that more people are using cards as transaction tools instead of debt instruments ... (See Card delinquencies)

Credit card interest rates stay put at 15.03 percent -- July 16, 2014: Interest rates on new card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates report)

Small debts can lead to big credit score problems -- Tiny debts, if unpaid, can blossom into huge problems by marring your credit score and dropping obstacles in your financial path ... (See Small debts, big problems)

Debt and divorce: 5 steps to make a clean credit split -- Divorce can get ugly if one person doesn't follow debt repayment obligations spelled out in the divorce decree. Take these five steps to increase your chances of a smooth split ... (See Credit split)

Rates rise for the second straight week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- July 9, 2014: Interest rates on new card offers rose Wednesday for the second consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report, July 9, 2014)

Bad debt but good income? Your credit can be fixed -- For a price, lenders are willing to forget your old credit sins, as long as you have enough income to prevent any new ones ... (See Income trumps debt)

Rates rise to 15.02 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- July 1, 2014: Interest rates on new card offers rose this week for the first time in two months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report, July 2, 2014)

Debt collector can't back out on deal, if it's in writing -- If a debt collector ignores an agreement for monthly payments and ramps up the threats, you just have to produce the written agreement. You did get it in writing, didn't you? ... (See In writing)

Rates remain stuck at 15.01 percent for 8th week -- June 25, 2014: Interest rates on new card offers remained locked in place this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report, June 25, 2014)

10 times NOT to use credit cards -- Credit cards are convenient, but if you want your sanity and pocketbook to survive intact, give the poor things a rest sometimes ... (See 10 times not to use cards)

Authorized users and charge cards -- Authorized users can't mess up a credit utilization ratio for charge cards, because there's no ratio to upset. However, late pays still damage credit ... (See Charge cards)

0-percent balance transfer after debt in collections? Good luck -- Balance transfer offers aren't lifelines offered to people with bad credit, they're a deal for those who maintain good credit ... (See Balance transfer )

Card rates remain locked at 15.01 percent for 7th week -- June 18, 2014: Interest rates on new credit card offers didn't budge this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report, June 18, 2014)

What's your 'real' FICO score? All of the above -- Have you ever wondered why your FICO score varies from one time to the next? Today it's 700, tomorrow it's 720, a month later it's 785! Then the car dealer runs your credit report and informs you that your score is a mere 699! What happened? ... (See 'Real' score)

Walk away from co-signed loan? No such thing -- Her mother defaults; her kids need student loans. What's a serial co-signer to do? Step No. 1: Put down the pen ... (See Co-sign no more)

Rates remain at 15.01 percent for 6th week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- June 11, 2014: Interest rates on new card offers held firm this week, stalling at 15.01 percent for the sixth straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APR on new card offers: 15.01% again)

On-time payments cure the stinkiest credit -- With not much credit or income, a reader's best ally is time and a lengthy series of on-time payments, says Erica ... (See On-time payments)

Talk to lender before letting debt go to a collector -- If you're late on debt payments, don't just let it go to collections. Your original lender has more loan workout options to offer ... (See Let debt go?)

Rates remain stuck at 15.01 percent for 5th week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- June 4, 2014: Interest rates on new card offers remained at 15.01 percent Wednesday for the fifth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See weekly rate report 15 percent)

Mom piggybacked on realty agent's troubled account. What now? -- A real estate agent convinced an elderly woman to sign on to the agent's credit card account to build credit history. But now the agent is bankrupt and collections agents are calling. How can the woman's daughter help? ... (See Piggybacking)

Thanks, Sis, but I'm ready for my own card now -- A man who got his sister's help to raise his score is ready to graduate to credit on his own -- taking his remaining debt with him via balance transfer ... (See Balance transfer)

Rates hold steady at 15.01 percent for fourth week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- May 29, 2014: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

6 fears that keep people from financial advice -- Nearly half of Americans don't know who to trust for financial advice. Here are wise ways to get over that and other fears ... (See 6 financial fears)

Mom opened checking, credit accounts in my name, left a mess -- Fraud, even by a family member, is a crime that should be reported in order for you to start the process of salvaging your credit ... (See Family fraud)

Rates remain stuck at 15.01 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- May 21, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers didn't budge for the third consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report, May 21, 2014: APRs stalled at 15.01%)

CFPB: Credit scores for medical debt are unfair -- Study by consumer watchdog agency finds that medical debt collection weighs too heavily on people's credit scores ... (See Medical debt and credit scores)

Debt settlement vs. credit counseling: similar aims, different means -- Both debt settlement companies and credit counselors run ads offering help in getting out of debt. But their tactics are very different ... (See Debt reduction)

Get that debt settlement offer in writing -- An offer to settle old debt for a 10th of what's owed may soun good, but get it in writing, and make sure you understand the consequences ... (See Old debt)

Rates remain at 15.01 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- May 14, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers remained untouched this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate survey May 14, 2014)

How to rebuild credit in 5 steps -- Don't think of rebuilding bad credit as a race -- slow and steady changes are needed, and time and patience are your allies ... (See Gradual growth)

Authorized user backfire hurts son's credit score -- Adding their son as authorized user backfired after they both lost their jobs. Now his plan to buy a house is in jeopardy ... (See Authorized user backfire)

How quickly is my card payment posted? -- It can take a few days for your card issuer to post your payment -- and for someone with a low-limit card, that can matter a lot ... (See Payment posting)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates rise to 15.01 percent -- May 7, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers inched higher this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates averaged higher)

Judgment-proof debtors have an imperfect shield -- If you are poor enough, a court judgment for debt has little threat. You're "judgment-proof," with wages and belongings shielded by law from collectors -- but that does not mean you can relax ... (See Judgment-proof debtors)

Settling a debt after a judgment -- Even after a judgment is entered against you, it is still possible to settle a debt for less than the court-determined amount -- maybe much less ... (See Settling debt after judgment)

Debt judgment may trigger bankruptcy -- Bankruptcy shields you from debt collectors, but comes with serious consequences that must be weighed ... (See Debt judgments and bankruptcy)

Fighting a default judgment for debt -- In most debt judgments, consumers never got their day in court. Often these one-sided judgments can be erased, giving the debtor another chance to fight the charges ... (See Fighting a debt judgment)

Court judgments for debt: Your options after the gavel -- A court judgment for debt can lead to seizure of wages and property, but there are steps to protect yourself after the decision comes down ... (See Judgments for debt: after the gavel)

There ain't no cure for the bad co-signer credit score blues -- When you co-sign, you agree to take on responsibility for the loan -- and the credit damage that results if it's allowed to go into default ... (See Co-signer credit score blues)

Rate survey: Credit card APRs linger at 15 percent -- April 30, 2014: Average rates on new card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See April 30, 2014, rate report)

During Chapter 13 bankruptcy, secured cards tough to get -- Banks may reject your credit card application, even for a secured card, while you're under the strict money diet imposed by a Chapter 13 bankruptcy ... (See Secured card)

Debt rises by 5 percent in top 20 cities -- A study by the credit bureau Experian shows borrowing is on the rise again in 19 of the 20 biggest U.S. cities, with Dallas, Houston leading the way ... (See Average debt)

Divorced woman still cleaning up ex's financial mess -- Five years after their breakup, a woman is trying to see if there's a way to undo the financial damage her ex dumped on her and she unwisely kept ... (See Ex's mess)

Rate survey: APRs hold steady at 15 percent -- April 23, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers were unchanged at 15 percent this week after dipping the previous week ... (See April 23, 2014 rate report)

Should I pay in full, even after a debt settlement? -- If it's been years since the settlement, and the credit damage is mostly behind you, it's best just to let go. Focus on what's ahead, not what's behind you ... (See Settled)

Debt settlement vs. bankruptcy: Which damages credit score worse? -- Debt settlement means the creditor gets at least something back, so it damages credit scores less than bankruptcy, which wipes out debt ... (See Credit damage)

How to perform a credit transfusion on your spouse -- It's a tricky and dangerous procedure, but it's possible: The spouse with good credit can absorb the bad-credit person's debt by balance transfer ... (See Credit transfusion)

Rates rise to 15.02 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- April 9, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers ticked up this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See April 9, 2014: Average APR rises to 15.02%)

Author Steve Bucci: Take the slow, steady road to good credit -- "Credit Repair Kit for Dummies" author Steve Bucci says there's no magic wand to a quick credit fix nor is there a credit repair fairy ... (See Credit repair )

Take care before giving a debt collector your bank account information -- In some cases, debt settlement may be the right option, but verify first that you owe the debt, and then dole out the dough yourself ... (See Bank account)

Rates remain at 15.01 percent for 7th week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- April 2, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers remained locked at 15.01 percent Wednesday for the seventh consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See weekly rate report)

10 tips for dealing with debt collectors, collection -- First, pull your head out of the sand. Next, educate yourself on your rights and on who to reach out to for help or to register a complaint ... (See Debt collection tips)

3 who bounced back from bankruptcy to millionaires -- Bouncing back after a bankruptcy may not be easy, but it can be done. The most prosperous of the rebounders analyze their past shortcomings, chart a better route, then march full force into the future ... (See Bankruptcy to millionaire)

Card interest rates remain locked at 15.01 percent -- March 26, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Interest rates locked)

Can I use my credit card after bankruptcy? -- There is no specific amount of time you have to wait before you can start charging again after bankruptcy. In fact, it can even help rebuild your credit ... (See Bankruptcy)

Pay the whole debt or pay part: Which helps credit score more? -- Much of the credit score damage was already done back when you defaulted, but paying it off can make you look better to other lenders ... (See Partial payment)

Credit card interest rates remain at 15.01 percent -- March 19, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers remained stuck at 15.01 percent Wednesday for the fifth straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates)

Familiar fraud: When family and friends steal your identity -- When identity fraud victims know their imposters, it can rip apart relationships as it ruins finances, making it a tough crime to overcome ... (See Familiar fraud)

Credit card interest rates remain stuck at 15.01 percent -- March 12, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers stayed put this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Don't default on a stipulated judgment -- When you agree to pay a creditor a reduced, but fixed amount each month to satisfy an old debt and then default, you risk having to pay the full balance ... (See Stipulated judgment)

Help! Mom trashed my credit -- It's tough to find that a card you never signed up for is dragging down your credit and chances for employment, but if you were just an authorized user, you'll get off easy ... (See Credit)

Credit card interest rates hold at 15.01 percent -- March 5, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers remained at 15.01 Wednesday for the third consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates)

If authorized user goes bankrupt, account holder's credit not at risk -- Granting authorized user status to a partner who later goes bankrupt won't risk your credit, but watch out for any joint accounts ... (See Partner's credit)

Credit card interest rates hold steady at 15.01 percent -- Feb. 26, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers stayed put this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Making sure bad debts are gone from your credit report -- Still paying a collector for an old debt? It should eventually fall off your credit report. But take care or it could linger longer ... (See Old debts and credit reports)

How 'jamming' cleans your credit report -- temporarily -- The scam called jamming throws a wrench into a beleaguered credit report dispute process, making it harder for the big three credit bureaus to keep up with legitimate disputes ... (See Jamming)

Old debts come back to life with 1099-C -- When an old, unpaid debt gets written off, chances are that you'll receive a 1099-C cancellation of debt notice, meaning Uncle Sam wants his cut ... (See 1099-C)

'Jamming' cleans your credit -- temporarily -- Some credit repair clinics clog the dispute system with bogus paperwork, challenging everything on clients' credit reports. The tactic works -- temporarily ... (See Jamming scam)

Credit card interest rates tick up to 15.01% -- Feb. 19, 2014: Interest rates on new credit card offers inched up this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Feb. 19, 2014 rate report)

Surprise! Many credit card agreements allow repossession -- An analysis of the federal database of credit cards finds dozens include a 'security interest' clause that leaves the door open to the repo man ... (See Repossession)

Credit card interest rates hold steady at 15 percent -- Feb. 12, 2014: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained untouched this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Credit card interest rates remain at 15 percent -- Feb. 5, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

When is it time to 'cut off' your financially dependent parents? -- If you’re a parent, you may be used to financially helping out your kids. But what if the tables turn and your own mom or dad starts coming to you for money? How much should you help them out? ... (See Cut off your parents)

While hiding from abusive ex, she falls behind on loan payments -- A mom and her kids went into hiding to escape an abusive husband last year, but now she's worried how to make good on her lapsed car payments ... (See In hiding)

Credit card interest rates fall to 15 percent -- Jan. 29, 2014: Average rates on new card offers dropped this week for the first time in nearly six months. ... (See Rates)

Do you have what it takes for DIY debt settlement? -- Settling your own debts instead of hiring someone else can save you money and put you in the power seat, but it's not for the fainthearted ... (See DIY debt)

Ex's ID theft thwarts new couple's finances -- His ex-wife racked up debt in his name on a secret credit card, but agreed to pay if off in the divorce. But how does he clear the debt off his credit reports? ... (See Ex-debt)

How long can a judgment impact your credit score? -- Once you have a judgment against, you, it's bad: Some state laws allow them to be in force for decades. But it may fall from your credit report sooner ... (See Judgments)

Credit card interest rates remain locked at 15.06 percent -- Jan. 22, 2014: Average rates on new card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates locked at 15.06 percent)

Restoring credit score after defaulting on student loan -- Deferring student loan payments doesn't last forever. When they come due, it's time to pay up or suffer the credit consequences ... (See Student loan default)

Single mom struggling with card payments -- A single mom living paycheck to paycheck wonders how she can clear up the charge-offs and late payments listed on her credit reports ... (See Credit score)

Erroneous loan default report won't affect other credit accounts -- When a large error claiming you defaulted suddenly appears on your credit, you have to fight to remove it, but it won't impact other loans ... (See Not my debt)

Credit card interest rates frozen at 15.06 percent -- Jan. 15, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers remained stuck at 15.06 percent Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Weekly Rate Report, Jan. 15, 2014)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates begin year at 15.06 percent -- Jan. 8, 2014: Average rates on new card offers remained frozen in place Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates still at 15.06 percent)

Psst! A hot tip on debt elimination companies: They're bogus -- So the guy at the airport lounge was saying how a debt elimination firm cost just $49 to cut all debt. It's real, right? Erica splashes cold water in a reader's face ... (See Debt elimination )

How behavioral economics explains 6 common money mistakes -- Ever look back at financial decisions and ask: Why did I do that? Turns out, science can probably answer the question with behavioral economics ... (See Mistakes)

Credit card late fees could rise in 2014 -- The CFPB has added $1 to the amount that first-time offenders can be charged for a late credit card payment, raising it to $26 ... (See credit card late payment fees)

The financial power of negative thinking -- Optimism may feel good, but pessimism is sometimes more helpful in building wealth. Here are six times it pays to have a more pessimistic financial outlook ... (See Negative thinking)

Options for overcoming thin credit -- If you've had little or no credit history and have no income, secured cards and becoming an authorized user are your best options ... (See Overcoming thin credit)

Credit card interest rates end year at 15.06 percent -- Dec. 31, 2013: A year of stability in credit card rates ends with APRs at 15.06%, just 0.1% higher than a year ago, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates)

Eldar Shafir Q&A: Money worries lead to poor financial decisions -- Constant concern about money makes you prone to poor financial decisions, says "Scarcity" co-author Eldar Shafir ... (See Broke)

Having trouble making your credit card payments? -- Do your best to continue making minimum payments on your cards. For any cards that you are not able to pay, communicate regularly with the card issuer to let them know the status of your situation ... (See Late payments)

Credit card interest rates stuck at 15.06 percent -- Dec. 24, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates)

The ultimate gift: paying off someone else's debt -- Interested in embracing your inner philanthropist? Instead of buying a gift, why not apply that cash to help whittle down a deserving person's debt load? ... (See Debt payoff)

Mississippi sues Chase Bank over debt collection -- Mississippi's attorney general sued Chase Bank for making false demands for debt against credit card customers ... (See Chase sued false debit collection)

Rates remain at 15.06% for 5th week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Dec. 18, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers remained stuck at 15.06 percent Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Weekly Rate Report, Dec. 18, 2013)

Former 'credit junkie' Beverly Harzog comes clean -- Personal finance expert Beverly Harzog unveils her secret addiction to credit in a new book, "Confessions of a Credit Junkie" ... (See Credit junkie)

Bad idea: using credit cards to pay for a move -- Relocating to another state without a job, emergency fund or a place to live is just bad planning. Living off credit cards until your ship rolls in is even worse ... (See Living on credit)

Despite settlement, demands to repay old debt resurface -- A collector's new demands you pay an old debt should go away if you got written verification of the settlement agreement. If not, take these steps ... (See Written verification)

Credit card interest rates remain flat at 15.06 percent -- Dec. 11, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers lingered at 15.06 Wednesday for the fourth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates)

How soon after bankruptcy can you get new credit cards? -- With a Chapter 7 bankruptcy almost behind you, how soon is too soon to start applying for new credit? And will you be approved? ... (See Post-bankruptcy)

Husband's secret debt destroying marriage -- He opened new cards without his wife's knowledge, racked up debt and now can't afford the minimum payments. Should she leave him or give him another chance? ... (See Secret debt)

Lending to friends and family: Your 4-step guide -- Lending to people you know can be fraught with risk. If you're going to do it, follow this 4-step guide to check expectations and improve your chances of success ... (See Family loans)

Sample promissory note for loans to family, friends -- If you're lending to a relative or friend, you'll want to craft a written agreement. This free sample promissory note spells out how and when you are to be paid, and what happens if the borrower doesn't repay the loan ... (See Sample promissory loan note)

A quick guide to credit card cash advances: No! Don't! -- In an emergency, when you have no other options, then maybe – maybe – taking a cash advance from your credit card makes sense. Otherwise, no. And by that, we mean, NO! ... (See Cash advance guide)

The high cost of credit card cash advances -- Using your credit card to draw cash at an ATM or writing one of those handy checks that comes in your monthly statement can cost you plenty, an exclusive CreditCards.com survey shows ... (See Cash advances)

Regretting your recent cash advance? You're not alone -- More than half of those who have taken a cash advance on a credit card say they have regretted that decision, according to a new CreditCards.com poll ... (See Cash advance poll)

Credit card interest rates hold steady at 15.06 percent -- Dec. 4, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers remained at 15.06 percent Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates)

What kind of plastic can you get with fair credit? -- With FICO scores in the low 600s and numerous hard inquiries on his credit reports, will card issuers accept or reject his card application? ... (See Fair credit)

Defaulting on card may cost you your AmEx points -- If you have more than just a missed payment or two, American Express gives itself the right to cancel your account “for any reason.” If it cancels your account, you forfeit all of your points ... (See AmEx points)

Resolve medical debt before marriage -- A young couple wants to tie the knot, but his unpaid medical debt looms over them. Should they go ahead with their wedding plans or put them off until the debt is cleared? ... (See Medical debt)

Credit card interest rates remain at 15.06 percent -- Nov. 26, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

What's the big deal about secured cards? -- When your credit is trashed or you have a thin credit file, building up a solid credit score can be within reach by just signing up and using a secured card ... (See Secured cards)

How to get cash for your business without credit -- If you need to buy a few hundred dollars' worth of supplies for your business but credit cards aren't an option, you might want to examine your expenses, get a job, or both ... (See Business cash)

Credit card interest rates rise to 15.06 percent -- Nov. 20, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers inched higher this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Debt judgment puts inheritance at risk -- When expecting an inheritance after you've had a judgment against you for unpaid debt, don't worry -- that money doesn't automatically go to creditors. But worry: They'll come looking ... (See Inheritance and debt)

Credit card interest rates remain at 15.05 percent -- Nov. 13, 2013: Average rates on new card offers remained at 15.05 percent Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

How to use the grace period to avoid paying interest -- Taking advantage of the grace period's break on interest charges can save the typical card user a couple hundred bucks a year, but the savings aren't automatic ... (See Grace period)

Forging hubby's signature on a card application -- Forging a spouse's signature here and there may be OK, but never on a credit card or loan application, and not if it's done secretly ... (See Forgery)

Can card issuer send bills just 11 days before due date? -- The Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009 says consumers should get 21 days from the time the bill was sent until it's due ... (See Due dates)

Credit card interest rates rise to 15.05 percent -- Nov. 6, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers rose to 15.05 percent this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

New complaint data zings credit bureaus -- Federal complaint data shows that consumers are often dissatisfied -- even when credit bureaus say they have addressed the problem ... (See Credit bureau complaints)

Ex-wife racks up debt on joint accounts -- When a marriage is over, joint accounts should be severed. If not, an ex's financial misbehavior can come back to haunt you ... (See Divorce debt)

Cards maxed out for 10 years? Perhaps you need a plan -- If you've lived for a decade with maxed-out credit cards, consider a debt management plan, but pick your counselor carefully and know the credit impact ... (See Debt plan)

Credit card interest rates hold at 15.03 percent -- Oct. 30, 2013: Interest rates on new card offers lingered at 15.03 percent Wednesday for the fourth straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Card APRs)

Adding a spouse as authorized card user to boost score -- Couples looking to buy a house can buff their team credit score by having the person with better credit add the partner with worse credit as an authorized card user ... (See Score)

Credit card interest rates hold steady at 15.03 percent -- Oct. 23, 2013: Average rates on new card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Getting rid of old medical debt -- When old medical debt is keeping you from moving ahead with your life, it's time to take action. Either pay it off or work out a debt settlement with collectors ... (See Medical debt)

2013 bankruptcy filings continue decline -- 2013 is on track to be the third straight year of reduced filings since 2010, when the aftermath of the recession pushed personal bankruptcies to about 1.53 million ... (See Bankruptcy)

Chronic late credit card payments: How bad can fines, fees get? -- Occasional tardiness won gentler treatment under a 2009 reform law, but repeat offenses bring heavier penalties ... (See Late fees)

Seeking low-interest cards in quest for a better credit score -- If you're trying to recover from bad credit, will canceling old cards and opening new cards improve your credit score? ... (See Credit score)

Credit card interest rates hover near record highs -- Oct. 16, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers stayed put this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Turned down for secured card. Now what? -- After being turned down for a secured card, which is designed for people with bad credit, are there any other options to rebuild your credit? ... (See Rejected)

How much can collectors increase charged-off debt? -- Courts are setting higher standards for debt buyers to prove their right to charge you interest after a bank has written off your debt ... (See Charged-off debt)

Yes, debt collectors have the right to collect, and sue -- Some people mistakenly believe that when a debt is charged off, the obligation to pay disappears. Not so. Debt collectors have the legal right to pursue, and sue, you ... (See Debt)

Credit card interest rates rise to 15.03% -- Oct. 9, 2013: Average rates on new card offers ticked up this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Biggest debt losers: Couple weathers hardships to repay $50,000 -- Cancer, Alzheimer's and unexpected early retirement can't deter a Georgia couple from sticking to repayment plan and paying off $50,000 in card debt ... (See Biggest debt losers)

CFPB widens its debt settlement crackdown -- The U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau fined a service provider for handling illegal debt settlement fees, marking an expansion in its crackdown on scammers ... (See CFPB)

Bankruptcy's credit damage worse than debt settlement's -- Both hurt badly, as they should, since they're serious debt defaults. But bankruptcy causes the greater credit score damage ... (See Bankruptcy vs. settlement)

Credit card interest rates remain at 15.02 percent -- Oct. 2, 2013: Average rates on new card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Landing and maintaining an unsecured line of credit for your business -- For small businesses with few assets seeking the flexibility of on-demand funds, an unsecured line of credit can be an ideal option. Keep these pointers in mind when considering one ... (See Unsecured)

Wage garnishment laws differ by state -- If you're served with a summons for unpaid debt, where you live will determine whether a creditor can recoup funds through wage garnishment ... (See Garnish)

Report: We've learned our lesson about using credit cards -- We've learned a lesson from the recession, says a report from a bankers' trade group, with cardholders paying lower interest, carrying lower balances ... (See Lesson learned)

Credit mix and maxing out: Undoing damage from a heavily used card -- If you have one credit card that's close to maxed out every month, having a mix of other types of credit will help soften any credit score damage ... (See Credit mix)

Credit card interest rates rise to 15.02% -- Sept. 25, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers lifted this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report, Sept. 25, 2013)

4 ways to build credit without a credit card -- If you want to start building credit but don't want to get a credit card, there are other options, including passbook or CD loans, credit builder loans and alternative credit scores ... (See Credit without a card)

Do card issuers remember my very old mistakes? -- If you defaulted on credit card debt years ago, so long ago that the debt is off your credit report, what are your chances of getting a new card with the same issuer? ... (See Old debt)

Elderly mom racks up card debt, check-cashing loans -- A daughter needs advice on how to help her elderly mom who has $25,000 in card debt and is relying on check-cashing loans to get by ... (See Breaking debt cycle)

Subprime borrowers have easier time getting car loans -- Unlike with credit cards, auto loans are becoming more available for borrowers with blemished credit ... (See Auto loans)

Credit card interest rates remain stuck at 14.99 percent -- Sept. 18, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers remained flat this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report, Sept. 18, 2013)

Mom illegally adds daughter to joint card -- A recently married daughter finds out her mom used her name to open a joint account without her permission or knowledge ... (See ID theft)

Rent-to-own vs. credit cards: Which costs less? -- What if you need a new TV, sofa or even a set of tires but you're broke? Do you turn to plastic or a rent-to-own store? Consumer advocates weigh in ... (See RTO)

Credit card interest rates remain at 14.99 percent -- Sept. 11, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Pre-screened offers don't guarantee card approval -- All those enticing zero percent card offers that come in the mail don't mean that you'll be approved for them, and can even hurt your credit score ... (See Offers)

9 debt myths debunked -- Did you hear the one about how making even a small payment will stop debt collectors in their tracks? If you believe that, you need some myth-debunking ... (See 9 debt myths)

Can you negotiate medical debt with collectors? -- Yes, you can negotiate over delinquent medical bills with a collection agency, but paying less than what is owed has consequences ... (See Medical debt)

CFPB: Consumers' side of credit disputes must be considered -- Federal regulators issued a stern warning for information furnishers to investigate disputed credit report data: Look at a consumer's side of the story ... (See CFPB)

Will making minimum payments damage my credit score? -- Consistently making minimum monthly payments on a high balance is a dangerous habit that can damage your credit score if your financial situation worsens ... (See Minimum)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates rise to 14.99 percent -- Sept. 4, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers rose this week for the first time in more than two months, to 14.99% ... (See Rates)

Rebuilding your credit as an authorized user -- Becoming an authorized user on a spouse's credit card can help you rebuild your credit but you need to understand your responsibilities and be committed to using the card wisely ... (See Rebuilding)

Student loan repayment troubles? Don't delay -- If a student loan ends up in default, your options for repayment become limited, and get worse after wage garnishment ... (See Student loans)

Rates remain flat for 3rd straight week -- Aug. 28, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Interest Rate Report, Aug. 28)

Is a card account open if it isn't activated? -- If you apply for a card, get it in the mail and then choose not to activate it, does the account still get listed on your credit report? ... (See Unactivated card)

Your map through Chapter 7 and 13 bankruptcy -- If you've decided that bankruptcy might be the solution for you, you need to be prepared for the stops along the way for Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcies ... (See Bankruptcy map)

Building good credit doesn't happen quickly -- Paying on time for a few months will not drastically change a credit score, especially if you've lapsed in the past. But with patience and time, your score will rise ... (See Good credit)

Many pay an unexpected price for deferred-interest deals -- About 1 in 5 people who sign up for deferred interest deals on big-ticket items actually wind up owing finance charges ... (See Deferred interest trap)

Deferred-interest, 0-percent financing 'deals' costly for many -- About 1 in 5 people who sign up for 0-percent, deferred interest deals wind up owing accumulated finance charges ... (See Deferred interest)

I'm buried in debt. Can I just stop making payments? -- If you're swamped with credit card debt, it may be tempting to stop making payments and hope the problem goes away. Sorry. It won't ... (See Stop paying)

Survey: Card satisfaction hits 7-year high -- Though impenetrable financial terms and opaque rewards programs still plague cardholders, we are increasingly satisfied with our plastic ... (See J.D. Power)

Credit card interest rates hold steady at 14.95% -- Aug. 21, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers held steady at 14.95 percent Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Don't share accounts with elderly parents -- Having a joint account with an elderly parent can have serious consequences, including being liable for debts, lawsuits and collection efforts ... (See Joint accounts)

Credit card interest rates remain at 14.95 percent -- Aug. 14, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers remained at 14.95 percent Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Credit score impact of settling past-due accounts -- When you have numerous credit accounts that are seriously past due, is the best solution to settle the accounts or try to pay them in full? ... (See Settle or pay in full?)

How to dispute unauthorized credit report inquiries -- If a negative item on your credit report isn't true, you dispute it. But did you know the same goes for credit report inquiries you don’t recognize or didn’t approve? ... (See Credit inquiries)

Stroke, spending spree leaves family with debt emergency -- After his wife suffered a stroke, she racked up card debt. He may be able to argue diminished capacity to have it dismissed, but should be prepared to pay up ... (See Health debt)

Credit card interest rates dip to 14.95% -- Aug. 6, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers fell to 14.95 percent Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report Aug. 7, 2013)

When being an authorized user is useless -- Her brother added her to his card to boost her credit, but the issuer doesn't report card activity for authorized users. What are her options? ... (See Authorized user)

If your company fails, your credit card rate can rise -- Your business is shuttered and you're left with credit card debt. Now the issuer is hiking your interest rate. Is it really allowed to do that? Most likely, yes. Here's what you can do ... (See Business card rate hike)

How to protect a foster child from ID theft -- Foster kids are even more at risk for identity theft than the general population. Help protect yourself or a young person you know by following these tips ... (See Tips)

Foster children get help in combating ID theft -- A 2011 federal law says when foster children turn 16, child welfare agencies must help them get annual credit reports and clear up any mistakes. States are now implementing programs to do just that ... (See Foster kids and ID theft)

Rates remain locked at 14.96% -- July 31, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained stuck at 14.96 percent Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates unchanged a 6th week)

Will a debt management plan hurt your credit score? -- When you enter a debt management plan, one of the requirements is to close open card accounts. How will that action affect your credit score? ... (See DMP)

How credit scores impact some student loan approvals -- Planning to apply for student loans? You might want to check your credit. If you’re applying for PLUS loans or private student loans, your credit history counts ... (See Student loans and credit)

Husband won't stop charging on joint card -- Sharing a joint credit card can be hard if one spouse uses the card too often and can't pay off the balance. Do they kill the card or get will that make things worse? ... (See Joint credit)

Rules of the road for improving your credit mix -- Having greater diversity in the types of credit you use can nudge your credit score up -- as long as you make your payments on time ... (See Credit mix)

Credit card interest rates remain at 14.96% for fifth week -- July 24, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged Wednesday for the fifth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Bankruptcies continue to fall -- As the eighth anniversary of a bankruptcy reform law approaches, filings in the first half of 2013 have fallen 14 percent from the same period one year ago ... (See Bankruptcy filings)

Repayment, settlement, bankruptcy: Facing debt from failed business -- A business owner has unpaid credit card debt worth thousands. Should she settle, file for bankruptcy or something else? ... (See Business debt)

Even with very old debt, don't ignore collection efforts -- The statute of limitations doesn't bar collectors from trying to get you to pay old debts, but you have rights and can stiff-arm them easily ... (See Old debt)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates stuck at 14.96% for 4th straight week -- July 17, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates unchanged a 4th week)

Help! My husband's ruining my credit -- They opened a joint credit card together and then her husband went "crazy" charging things they couldn't afford. To make matters worse, he stopped paying the bill ... (See Joint credit)

Q&A with 'Bootstrapper' author Mardi Jo Link -- Her book chronicles how she mended a broken heart and literally saved her Northern Michigan farm with alcohol, Buddhism and hard-won financial acumen ... (See Bootstrapper)

CFPB provides debt collection sample letters -- The U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau issues five sample letters to help consumers practice self-defense against unfair debt collection practices ... (See Debt collection sample letters)

Watchdog agency opens doors to complaints about debt collectors -- The government's consumer watchdog issued warning notices to the collection industry about illegal tactics on the day it began taking complaints about collectors ... (See Debt collection)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates don't budge -- July 10, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers stayed put this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Credit card weekly rate report)

Is daughter liable for shared card debt with mom? -- Mom tried to boost her daughter's credit by putting her on several credit cards, but then Mom passed away. Who has to pay the balances? ... (See Shared credit)

Card delinquencies hit 22-year low -- Credit card delinquencies hit their lowest levels since June 1990 during the first quarter of this year, reflecting a stronger economy and more frugal consumers, the American Bankers Association said. ... (See low credit card delinquent accounts)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates remain at 14.96% -- July 5, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained flat this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Why not leave country and bail on student loans? -- Sure, you can leave your debts behind -- and your family and friends, too. But there are repayment options that can help ease your burden. ... (See Student loans)

How canceled cards impact credit scores -- When a card is canceled, the only way it can hurt your credit score is by reducing your credit utilization ratio -- or if you behaved badly with it ... (See Canceled card)

Using plastic to pay off student loans: A bad idea -- Using one or more credit cards to get out from under the burden of student loan payments can seem tempting, but it's a step in the wrong direction ... (See Student loans)

Settling a debt? Verify it, and get everything in writing -- If you want to settle a debt with a collector for less than owed, do it safely and permanently by following these steps ... (See Settling debt the right way)

Bill to curb employer credit check passes N.Y. Assembly -- Afraid your bad credit may be holding you back from a great job? That may soon not be a concern for job-hunting New Yorkers, as the Credit Privacy in Employment Act passed the New York Assembly on June 24. ... (See Credit checks)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates remain flat -- June 26, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

6-step credit-building plan for a struggling single mom -- A low-income, young single mom with school and another baby coming wants to handle credit wisely, but she'd better have a plan to avoid debt ... (See New credit)

5 bankruptcy myths busted -- Only deadbeats, cheats and crooks file for bankruptcy, right? Nothing could be further from the truth, say the folks who deal with bankruptcy day to day ... (See Bankruptcy myths)

Old car debt hounds ex-wife -- What do you do do when your wages are garnished to pay for a repossessed car that was jointly owned by you and your ex? ... (See Joint debt)

Want to help a relative in debt? Do it carefully -- Sure, you can help a relative overwhelmed by debt. Help her negotiate, consolidate -- but be careful about taking that debt on yourself ... (See Relative in debt)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates rise to 14.96 percent -- June 19, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers rose this week for the first time in more than a month, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

5 top excuses (and 5 top fixes) for paying bills late -- Excuses abound for paying bills late, but none do you any good. We identify the top five -- and a way to overcome each one ... (See Bill paying moves )

Credit dispute process fix coming soon -- Disputing a credit report error? The bureaus will no longer discard your evidence; it will be scanned in and forwarded to the lender or debt collector ... (See Disputes)

Defaulting on some of your cards risks losing them all -- If your business is failing and you default on several credit cards, the issuers of your other cards will know about it and may cut you off -- but you have ways to escape the jam ... (See Damage reduction)

How to teach your son about money -- While financial literacy for women and girls has gotten a lot of attention in recent years, boys have their own issues. Here are some tips for teaching your son about credit and finance ... (See Money lessons)

Old debt, new collector: Negotiate? Ignore? Or pay up? -- When an old debt resurfaces as you're trying to make a credit comeback, getting it listed as paid in full does the most benefit to your credit, but the most harm to your cash flow ... (See Old debt, new collector)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates remain flat -- June 12, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained fixed this week at 14.95%, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

6 ways to protect your credit after a natural disaster -- While your first priority after experiencing a life-altering tragedy may be to rebuild, ignoring your debts can hamper your recovery ... (See Natural disaster)

Finding a free bankruptcy lawyer for business, consumer debt -- If you're considering bankruptcy but can't afford a lawyer, there are a few options available for you. Some bankruptcy attorneys do pro bono work, or you may be able to file the papers on your own ... (See Filing for free)

Divorcing? Your kids don't need a money martyr -- Sally sharply arches her eyebrow at a one-sided divorce settlement that gives him the house, her the debt -- and a self-imposed college fund obligation on top of it all ... (See Divorce and debt)

If you have the choice, pay off that big debt -- When a generous uncle offers to pay off a $30,000 credit card debt, say thanks and do it -- then figure out how to pay him back and stay out of debt ... (See Pay off debt)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates fall to 14.95 percent -- June 5, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers slipped this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See interest rates decline)

Peer-to-peer loans catch on for credit card debt consolidation -- Peer-to-peer loans -- made by individuals to other individuals -- are booming as a debt consolidation tool. Though they can be a deal, they aren't for everyone. Here's how they work, what to expect ... (See P2P)

Wife of inmate worries about his card debt -- Her husband is in prison for five years, and he left behind $7,000 in card debt that she can't pay. Will she be pursued for the debt by collectors? ... (See Debt and prison)

Nontraditional borrowing alternatives to online P2P loans -- Peer-to-peer lending works for people with solid credit, but if you have a history of late payments, there are other creative alternatives to credit card loans ... (See Creative, nontraditional loan choices)

Congress considers relief for credit damage from medical bills -- Debt caused by medical bills is special and should wait 120 days before it's reported late on credit reports, according to legislation introduced in Congress ... (See Medical debt)

Credit report complaints highlight errors -- One out of five people who complained about their credit reports said they contain information that does not belong to them, according to newly released figures ... (See Credit report errors)

Stuck with card debt with no job, assets -- She has no work or personal property and cannot afford to pay her card bill. Can she still be pursued for the debt even if she has nothing? ... (See Card debt)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates remain flat -- May 29, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Can old debt threaten a great credit score? -- His credit score is in the mid-700s already, but a debt collector is calling about an old debt. Will ignoring the calls threaten his creditworthiness? ... (See Credit score)

9 tips for managing ADHD and debt -- Constructing and sticking to a budget and determining which bills need to be paid and when can be especially challenging for those with ADD/ADHD ... (See ADHD and debt)

Will card debt scare off student loan lenders? -- With high card debt, no job and a desire to return to school, will qualifying for a student loan be insurmountable? ... (See Student loan)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates rise to 14.98 percent -- May 22, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers shot up this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Co-signer, joint account holder, guarantor: Know the difference -- Thinking about sharing a card account with someone? Take heed. Your liability for the debt could vary greatly depending upon the type of account you choose ... (See Shared accounts)

Student loan co-signer on the hook for delinquency -- A wife co-signed her husband's student loans, which he defaulted on when he lost his job. Should she pay off the balance or not? ... (See Student loan)

How to pick a bankruptcy attorney -- That’s it, you’re done. After struggling to pay your debts, you’re ready to consider bankruptcy. It’s time to contact a lawyer to represent you, but which one? ... (See Bankruptcy attorney)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates hold at 14.94 percent -- May 15, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained flat this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See May 15, 2013: Card rates hold at 14.94 percent)

Survey: Consumers still don't understand credit scores -- Women have more credit knowledge, says a study released Monday, but few of us really understand what makes us creditworthy ... (See Credit survey)

California blasts Chase for robo-signing -- California's attorney general accused Chase Bank of using false documents in court cases to collect credit card debts ... (See Chase robo-signing suit)

Infographic: How Robo-signing works in credit card debt -- When creditors mechanically and automatically certify that credit card debt is real without any documentary evidence, it's called robo-signing, and the practice is both widespread and controversial ... (See Robo-signing credit card debt)

Pay off debt vs. settle it: Which is better for your credit score? -- With $4,000 in card debt and five months behind on the bill, she wonders if settling the bill or paying it off is better for her credit score ... (See Credit score and settlement)

Debt lingers on credit report even after garnishment, repayment -- Through garnishment, an old debt has been repaid, but the credit damage can linger for years. The good news? It fades with time ... (See Old debt and credit reports)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates rise to 14.94 percent -- May 8, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers ticked up this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rare report)

Will paying off a bad loan early boost credit score? -- If you can afford to pay off a high-cost loan, do it. Don't stick with a bad loan in the false belief that it will help build your credit score ... (See Car loan)

Carrots offered, sticks abandoned: Card issuers lure late payers -- If you run a balance on your credit card and even maybe pays late sometimes, credit card issuers would like your business. To lure you, they're offering rewards for paying on time and reprieves from late fees ... (See Procrastinator's paradise?)

Help! My sneaky sis used my credit card, damaged my credit -- When family is involved in fraudulent card use, the choice is tough: Silently suffer the credit consequences or rat out a relative ... (See Fraud)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates remain at 14.93 percent -- May 1, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Rebuilding credit to run your new business -- If your personal credit is in the basement and you want to start up a business, getting a business card will be tough -- but not impossible. Here's how ... (See Rebuild credit)

Stop the debt shuffle, and figure out why you owe so much -- You have $55,000 in card debt. Now you want to borrow against a life insurance policy? Stop. Look at why you're in debt before you go any deeper ... (See Debt shuffle)

Debt pay-off choices: Less now or a lot later -- You can save now by paying an old debt at a discount, but consider your credit over the long run before making up your mind ... (See Pay debt now or later?)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates fall to 14.93 percent -- April 24, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers dipped this week for the first time in more than two months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See April 24, 2103: Rates fall to 14.93%)

When does bad debt fall off credit reports? -- If you have debts that went into collections and were later discharged in bankruptcy, when can you expect those marks to be erased from your credit reports? ... (See Debts)

Chapter 13 bankruptcy: How it works -- Unlike Chapter 7 liquidation plans, Chapter 13s give filers a chance to pay off debts over three to five years -- but they rarely turn out as planned ... (See Chapter 13 bankruptcy)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates remain at 14.95 percent for ninth week -- April 17, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers have stalled out, and remained at 14.95 percent for the ninth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See April 17: Rates at 14.95% for 9th straight week)

Late fees inflate balance of forgotten card -- She opened a card, charged $100 and then Hurricane Sandy hit and she forgot all about it. Now it's in a collector's hands and the balance is $300 ... (See Card default)

Robo-signed collection cases under fire -- Practices that let debt buyers win collection judgments with just hurriedly signed affidavits appear headed for a major overhaul ... (See Robo-signed debt collection)

Bankruptcy filings plunge in first quarter of 2013 -- Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy fillings fell the most in states hard hit by the recession, including Nevada and California ... (See 1st quarter bankruptcies)

Credit card interest rates stay at 14.95% for eighth straight week -- April 10, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained at 14.95 percent once again this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates survey, April 10, 2013)

How long does old debt stay on credit reports? -- If a debt is reported as being charged off and passes the state statute of limitations, when does it drop off your credit report? ... (See Old debt)

When can an issuer cancel your credit card account? -- Credit card companies can cancel your account for any number of reasons, even if you're paying on time -- and they don't have to warn you about it. Here's what you can do ... (See Closed card)

Rates remain at 14.95 percent for seventh straight week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- April 3, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers lingered at 14.95 percent for the seventh straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Starting an 18-year-old on the road to credit -- His parents sank into debt after marriage, but learned from their mistakes. How do they stop their 18-year-old son from repeating history? ... (See Young credit)

Damaged credit: Can you sue? -- While holding others accountable for inaccurate and costly credit hits is a recent legal phenomenon, courts are recognizing that good credit is a valuable asset ... (See Suing for damaged credit)

When to pay off old debt -- There can be good reasons to repay a debt even after it is too old for you to be sued over -- but you could create a new headache if you're not careful ... (See Old debt)

Cash-now promise of lawsuit loans under fire -- Lawsuit loans -- cash advances given to lawsuit filers before a case is settled -- are the latest fast-growing, high-fee lending industry to draw controversy and attempts at regulation ... (See Lawsuit loans)

How to clear a judgment from your records -- She repaid the collector after a judgment was placed against her, but the judgment remains after the collector folded. How does she clear the record? ... (See Judgments)

Rates remain stuck at 14.95 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- March 27, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers stayed put this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Who pays your expenses if your company goes bankrupt? -- Technically, you could be on the hook for unpaid expenses you charged if the company goes belly up, but in practice, employees are pretty safe ... (See Company expenses)

How old debts can lead to seized assets -- Just because you think a debt is beyond the statute of limitations doesn't mean you can ignore a court summons or bill collector lawsuits ... (See Old debts)

Expiration dates fuzzy on old card debt -- Card issuers' rules and conflicting legal rulings laws make it tough to tell when a consumer's debt ages past the statute of limitations ... (See Uncollectible debt)

Rate survey: Card interest rates hold steady at 14.95% for 5th week -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained flat this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Funding dreams on credit: Film financing -- Kenny Golde maxed out multiple credit cards and took out a business loan to finish a movie that went over budget, for total debt of $220,000 ... (See Film financing)

5 who funded their dreams on credit -- Do you have a big aspiration, but a small bank account? Check out how these five people went into debt to fulfill their fantasies, and the lessons they learned ... (See Funding dreams)

Survey: Credit card interest rates stay at 14.95 percent -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained flat this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Asking for a lower interest rate, higher limit on your credit card -- Following a brief lapse, a reader has restored her good payment habits and wants a higher credit limit and lower interest rate. Will her wishes be granted? ... (See Issuer requests)

'Pound Foolish' author Helaine Olen takes on personal finance 'gurus' -- In her book, the self-confessed former money dummy skewers the dispensers of personal finance advice for their ill-fitting generic "wisdom" ... (See Helaine Olen)

Taken to court for card debt? What to expect -- If you have been served a summons to appear in court over unpaid card debt, the legal journey will unfold in six stages. Know what they are ... (See Court judgment)

Do medical bills show up on credit reports? -- She wants to buy a house, but wonders if her medical bills are what's keeping potential lenders from offering to help her with a mortgage ... (See Medical bills)

Survey: Card rates remain at 14.95 percent for 3rd straight week -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained at 14.95 percent Wednesday for the third consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

7 things not to say to someone in a financial crisis -- What do you say to someone who confides in you to having severe money woes? Do you chide them for not being more responsible? Or do you change the subject? ... (See What to say)

Disabled son charges card to the max, then gets sued -- He can't work and lives off of $712 a month and maxed out a credit card. Now he's being sued. His mom worries the court will garnish his disability payments ... (See Sued for debt)

Rates hold at 14.95 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained static Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

When authorized user status works against you -- A 27-year-old with less-than-stellar credit is only jeopardizing her credit more by adding herself to her mom's card with a really high balance ... (See Authorized user)

Rate fall to 14.95 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Interest rates on new credit card offers fell Wednesday for the first time in nearly a month, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Credit score impact of settling a debt or paying it in full -- A debt collector can wipe its hands of you if you accept the settlement offer on a delinquent debt, but how does that impact your credit score? ... (See Settling debt)

Danny Singh talks about early money management skills -- At 11, he took over paying his mom's bills and managing her financial affairs. At 19, he published his second book, this one on fighting foreclosure. Singh dishes on his money lessons ... (See Whiz kid)

Bankers' group says CARD Act raised rates, lowered credit access -- The 3-year-old federal credit card reform law is a mixed bag, banking lobby group says, but hurt consumers access to credit and raised rates ... (See CARD Act impact)

10 ways loan co-signers can protect their assets -- Despite warnings from experts, people still co-sign loans for their loved ones. If you must, or already did, at least take these steps to protect yourself ... (See Co-signing protection)

After a debt judgment, inheritance may be at risk -- She's being sued for past due credit card debt. Can her creditors go after any inherited property or cash down the road? ... (See Debt judgment)

Rates hold steady at 14.96 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained at 14.96 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Authorized user's credit score in jeopardy on shared card -- When he was 14, his dad added him to a card account to boost his credit score. Now Dad is mismanaging the card and hurting his son's credit score ... (See Authorized user blues)

FTC report: 1 in 5 Americans has a mistake in credit report -- If applied to the 200 million Americans with credit reports, the Federal Trade Commission's findings would mean 40 million have a credit report mistake ... (See Credit report mistakes)

'Identity Thief' screenwriter Jerry Eeten has identity issues, too -- By the time Jerry Eeten's screenwriting career took off with the new Jason Bateman-Melissa McCarthy movie, he'd already left Hollywood to fashion a new identity as a Florida teacher ... (See Thief)

On disability, can't pay high card debt - is home at risk? -- Coping with a major illness and massive credit card debt, a woman wonders if the card issuers can take her house if she stops payments ... (See Illness and debt)

Rates tick up to 14.96 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Interest rates on new credit card offers inched up this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Steps to rebuild a thin credit file -- After getting into credit card trouble almost 10 years ago, he gave up using plastic. Now he wants to try again with a new card, but how can he qualify? ... (See Thin credit )

Credit counseling agencies get bigger, but are they any better? -- A wave of consolidation is rapidly transforming credit counseling from locally based agencies to national call centers ... (See Big credit counseling agencies get bigger - but better?)

Choosing a credit counseling agency: 6 tips -- Nonprofit credit counseling agencies are bound by rules that guard against abuses. But some agencies can work better for you than others ... (See Credit counselors)

Compare 4 choices for debt relief -- People who need help getting out from under debt have a number of choices, each with some advantages and pitfalls. Here's an overview ... (See 4 debt relief choices)

FTC: Debt collectors often have skimpy info -- About 1 million U.S. consumers a year dispute debts, says a new FTC report, and no wonder: Collectors often have little info on what is owed ... (See Collectors' skimpy info)

Rates remain at 14.95 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Interest rates on new credit card offers held steady at 14.95 percent Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Mom defaults on card shared with daughter -- A mom tried to do the right thing by adding her daughter to her credit card account, but then she stopped paying. How will that affect her daughter's credit rating? ... (See Authorized user)

Credit report marred by multiple collectors' marks over one loan -- If a delinquent debt is finally settled, can you get the multiple collectors' notations on your credit report removed? ... (See Credit reports and bad loans)

Rates dip slightly after 10-week status quo: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Interest rates on new credit card offers fell slightly Wednesday after remaining unchanged for 10 straight weeks, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

5 credit lessons all parents should teach their daughters -- Home schooling about credit is especially important for daughters, because women with low levels of financial literacy do worse with credit than their male counterparts. So teach these five lessons to your daughters before they leave home ... (See Teach your girls)

Facing off with Derek Sanderson -- Former fallen-from-grace NHL superstar Derek Sanderson talks about his new-found mission helping fellow athletes manage their wealth ... (See Derek Sanderson)

Quick ways to create a credit history for lenders -- With down payment in hand to buy her first home, but no credit history, a young woman is frustrated by repeated rejections from lenders ... (See Credit history)

4 high-cost desperation loans to avoid -- Overspend on the holidays? A short-term loan may seem like manna from heaven, but some loans may leave you in worse shape than before ... (See Last-ditch loans)

Bankruptcies fell 14% in 2012, continuing 2-year decline -- Bankruptcy filings for 2012 year show a 14 percent fall, following a 12 percent decline the prior year, as America continues its shaky economic recovery ... (See Bankruptcies fall)

He's new to credit, behind on bills, worried about job hunt -- He started off on the right foot by getting credit and paying bills on time, and then he moved, lost his job and fell behind on payments ... (See Missed payments)

Beware of co-signing student loans for your kids -- A mom co-signed for her kids' student loans, and now payments are way overdue. Mom's credit score is tanking as result. What are her options? ... (See Co-signer risks)

7 things that WON'T impact your credit score -- Some slip-ups can damage your credit score, but do you know which of your personal and financial attributes have no bearing on that three-digit number? ... (See Credit score)

Infographic: Credit card delinquencies on the decline -- Delinquent payments on credit cards hit an 18-year low in the third quarter of 2012, according to numbers from the American Bankers Association ... (See Delinquencies)

What lump sum offer will debt collectors settle for? -- With $80,000 of student loan debt in default, he wonders if there are any industry standards for settling for less than he owes with the collection agency ... (See Debt settlement)

How to mend your bad credit rating -- If you have horrible credit, it doesn't mean it's ruined forever. Knowing how you got there and how to make things right can help ... (See Digging out of bad credit)

Financial resolutions that stick -- Want to get your financial house in order in 2013? There are some tricks you can use to make sure you will achieve your goals this time around. ... (See Money resolutions)

Why good credit matters in a natural disaster -- When Superstorm Sandy hit, the last thing on East Coast residents' minds was their credit score. But having good credit and available credit smooths the bumpy road to recovery ... (See Superstorm Sandy)

Can debt collectors call relatives? Who and when? -- She owes a debt, but has been avoiding the debt collector's calls. So the collector calls her mother and shares private information. Is this legal? ... (See Debt collection)

Consumer watchdog report details credit bureaus' work -- Every wonder what the credit reporting agencies actually do with your credit information before selling it to lenders? You're in luck. The CFPB has issued the first ever comprehensive public report on the big three credit bureaus ... (See CFPB report on credit bureaus)

How one determined Kansas couple paid down $120,000 in debt -- Frances Bostick of Manhattan, Kansas, keeps a bag of cut-up credit cards to remind her of her hard-won victory over a $120,000 debt ... (See Shedding debt)

Some credit reports falsely tag consumers as terrorists, drug traffickers -- Credit bureaus are selling lenders special notations on credit reports called OFAC alerts. But some bureaus aren't telling consumers about the alerts -- and aren't allowing them to dispute it ... (See False credit report alerts)

How to rebuild credit after defaulting on several cards -- She defaulted on several credit cards years ago, and was even sued for payment on one of them. Now she wants a new credit card. Will she qualify? ... (See Card default)

Antidepressant use can spur spending sprees -- An unexpected and financially devastating side effect of antidepressants: irrational shopping sprees, gambling jaunts and reckless investments ... (See Antidepressants and spending)

Rates remain stuck at 14.96 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Nov. 28, 2012: Interest rates on new credit card offers idled at 14.96 percent for the third straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

6 credit score strategies: Do they work? -- Some people go to extremes to try and improve their credit scores, adopting tactics that can seem, well, a bit unusual. What’s even odder is that a few of them actually work. ... (See Credit scores)

Rates hold steady at 14.96 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Nov. 21, 2012: Interest rates on new card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report )

Once you reaffirm an old debt you can be sued -- Debt that has passed the statute of limitations should prevent debt collectors from suing you -- unless you mistakenly reaffirmed that the debt is yours ... (See Re-aging debt)

With a big card debt, can you negotiate before you're late? -- You can try to settle for less than full payment if your credit card bills are current, but it may not work, and don't stop payments to force the issue ... (See Early debt negotiation)

Rates slide to 14.96 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Nov. 12, 2012: Interest rates on new credit card offers fell this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

How to successfully sue a debt collector -- The same law that sets boundaries on collectors' behavior gives you the right to sue them when they ignore the rules. Follow these tips from lawyers to help prove that you were wronged ... (See Debt collection)

How does settled debt impact your credit score? -- With four credit cards in collections, she wonders about the impact of paying less than what she owes ... (See Settled credit card debt)

Reduction seen in lawsuits against debt collectors -- For the first time since at least 2004, consumers will bring fewer lawsuits in federal courts this year alleging debt collector abuses ... (See Debt lawsuits)

Rates hold at 15.01%: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Nov. 7, 2012: Interest rates on new credit card offers stayed put this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Is student loan co-signer at risk if bankruptcy looms? -- With shared responsibility for a student loan, a mom worries that when her daughter files for bankruptcy, the mom's credit will be at risk ... (See Student loan co-signer)

Credit scores related to where you live -- Where you live can make a big difference in how you use -- or misuse -- credit, but it's more complicated than just your address ... (See Geographic credit score impact)

When to drop a credit card with a monthly fee -- You got the card to rebuild your credit, but it has served its purpose and now its monthly fee is adding up. Do you keep it or cancel it? ... (See Credit card fees)

5 mistakes people make when disputing credit report errors -- Many people get tripped up by a confusing number of pitfalls that sometimes begin before they even submit their first dispute. Here are five of the most common mistakes made when disputing credit report errors ... (See Credit)

Card rates rise slightly: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Oct. 31, 2012: Credit card interest rates ticked up this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Card rates stay at 15% for sixth straight week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Oct. 24, 2012: Credit card interest rates lingered at 15 percent Wednesday for the sixth straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Does co-signing a mortgage put house at risk for unpaid credit card debt? -- A disabled mom co-signed for her son's home loan, but now she's being sued for credit card debt. Is her son's house in jeopardy? ... (See Co-signer risks)

Intense Facebook use goes with higher credit card debt -- Those who frequently used Facebook to socialize with close friends tend to have higher debt, lower credit scores, says new research ... (See Facebook use = more debt)

Consumer board (CFPB) begins federal supervision of debt collectors -- Under a final rule issued Wednesday, the federal consumer watchdog will routinely inspect the operations of the 175 biggest debt collectors beginning Jan. 2, 2013 ... (See Debt collectors)

Bankruptcy filings continue to slip in third quarter of 2012 -- Filings are down 14 percent in the first nine months of the year, although experts expect them to resume an upward climb soon ... (See Bankruptcy filings Q3)

Thinking of paying old debt? First, look at your whole financial picture -- From the narrow perspective of your credit report, yes, paying off old debt is always better. But then you won't have that money to buy food or shelter ... (See Debt payoff dilemma)

Financial watchdog is now accepting complaints about credit reports -- The financial watchdog is now accepting complaints related to consumers' credit reports -- and demanding answers from the credit bureaus ... (See Credit report complaints )

Card rates remain at 15% for fifth week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Oct. 17, 2012: Credit card interest rates remained at 15 percent Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Disputing errors on credit reports: A broken process -- A federal law is supposed to guarantee that credit report errors get fixed. So why do some people wind up spending months or even years trying to remove legitimate errors that are ruining their credit? ... (See Credit)

Can't get credit after bankruptcy? 3 reasons -- After you emerge from bankruptcy, getting credit can be tricky if you still have certain debts, aren't earning enough or apply with the wrong bank ... (See Credit after bankruptcy)

Debt-free makeovers: Beauty without breaking the bank -- Keeping up with the Kardashians as they get gorgeous is no frugal feat. While celebrities have deep pockets for tucks and tweaks, what's the average Josephine to do? ... (See Beauty and the bank)

Authorized card users don't have to pay up -- If you're an authorized user on your ex's credit card, you're not legally liable to the card issuer, but he could file a lawsuit for repayment ... (See Authorized users)

6 reasons it's time to break up with your credit card -- Sometimes relationships fizzle -- and that can be especially true of your relationship with your credit card. Here are six ways to know when it's time to move on ... (See Breaking up with your credit card)

Spouse isn't immune to bankruptcy's impact -- When one spouse files for bankruptcy, the other spouse could still be on the financial hook ... (See Bankruptcy)

Young adult financial lessons -- When teaching a young adult to make smart financial choices -- start with the basics and move in to the scare tactic. ... (See Young credit)

Deceptive gray charges trap consumers into debt -- Small, unwanted charges on credit cards often go unnoticed by consumers. But they can quickly add up ... (See Deceptive charges)

Credit card interest rates remain stuck at 15%: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Oct. 10, 2012: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained at 15 percent on Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Considering bankrutpcy? Steps to take to protect your home -- Whether you keep your home in bankruptcy depends on which type you file, and in which state, so seek legal advice ... (See Protecting home during bankruptcy)

Areas struggling from recession still cautious with credit debt -- According to data from Experian, cardholders' willingness to pull out the plastic is partly determined geography -- specifically, by whether an area has recovered from the recessoin ... (See Credit card debt)

Credit card interest rates remain stuck at 15%: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Oct. 3, 2012: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained at 15 percent on Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate Report)

Want a rewards credit card? Clean up your credit score first -- A young man wants a rewards credit card for his new job, but his credit history is sketchy, which may also impact his new career ... (See Rewards cards)

10 surefire steps to get errors off your credit reports -- If you've already spent months, or even years, trying to scrub errors from your credit reports, it may feel like you have no choice but to live with them. However, don't give up too soon. You can get those errors fixed ... (See Tips for clearing credit errors)

What to do to keep debt from re-aging -- When debt collectors try to revive, or "re-age," old debt, know your rights and keep your wallet -- and your mouth -- shut ... (See Avoiding re-aged debt)

If a credit card holder dies in debt, the authorized user is not liable to pay -- Authorized users on a credit card are not liable for the debt left by a deceased cardholder, but get the information off your credit report ASAP ... (See Deceased cardholder)

Credit card interest rates remain at 15%: CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report -- Sept. 26, 2012: Interest rates on new credit card offers held steady on Wednesday after rising to 15 percent the previous week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate Report)

Study: Domestic violence victims also often endure 'coerced debt' -- Victims of domestic violence are often controlled by their abusers, and a new study says destruction of their credit is one method ... (See 'Coerced debt')

Tips: How to protect yourself from financial abuse, coerced debt -- Knowledge is power if you’re a victim of a partner's financial abuse that has led to debt. These tips from experts can help halt or reverse the abuse ... (See Financial abuse)

What qualifies as a 'good' FICO credit score? -- Even if you screwed up big time just once, you can still have a good credit score. And if you fix the mistake, it can be even better ... (See Good credit score)

How romance can ruin your finances -- Love is free, but sealing the deal may cost you. Know when the pursuit is hurting your bottom line and when it might be better to back off ... (See Love and money)

Zombie debt business booms; consumers at risk -- Do you have a debt from years ago that you never paid? If so, beware: that old account could come lurching back to life when you least expect it ... (See Zombie debt)

Chased by zombie debt? 7 steps to take - fast -- Old debt coming back to haunt you? These seven steps may not all kill off 'zombie debt' but they'll sure keep you ahead of it ... (See Zombie debt)

Telephone scam artists pay up -- Three men are settling charges for selling credit cards that could only be used to purchase items such as "play flutes." ... (See credit card scam)

Highest credit scores in Wisconsin, study says -- It seems the Midwest stayed strong during the economic downturn, but the credit scores of folks in the South leave something to be desired ... (See Credit scores by area)

Credit card interest rates hit 15%: CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report -- Sept. 19, 2012: interest rates on new credit card offers rose this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate Report)

Rebuilding a credit score after job loss takes time, patience -- If a job loss has led to debt, you can't fix the past, but you can rebuild your credit score by adding positive, new entries in your credit record ... (See Rebuilding credit)

Steps to take to stop debt collection robocalls -- There are steps you can take to stop those annoying debt collection agency robocalls from calling you nonstop for days on end ... (See Debt collection robocalls)

Drunken shopping: How drinking can pickle your finances -- Buying under the influence, shopping after chardonnay or drunk shopping. No matter what you call it, shopping after sucking back some spirits can do a number on your budget ... (See Drunken shopping)

Credit card interest rates hold firm: CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report -- Sept. 12, 2012 - Interest rates on new credit card offers held steady for the third week in a row, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate Report)

When does a debt management plan make sense? -- A single mom has racked up big card debt and also plans on going back to school. Would a debt management plan reduce her financial struggles? ... (See Debt management plans)

Credit card interest rates remain stable: CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report -- Sept. 5, 2012 -- Credit card interest rates held firm for the second straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate survey)

A primer on Libor, the federal funds rate and the US prime rate -- Confused by the difference between Libor and prime? Here's all you need to know about the benchmark interest rates that help set your loans ... (See Interest rates)

New U.S. immigrant credit rules of the road -- The U.S. credit system's rules are not easy to grasp for those new to the country, and understanding can be clouded by some common credit reporting myths ... (See New credit)

Rejected for credit? Maybe it's because you're dead -- Rejected for a loan because your credit history was shut down? It could be because the credit bureaus think you're dead ... (See Credit zombies)

What to do when a friendly loan goes unpaid -- Lending money to family and friends is risky, especially if you charge that loan to your credit card. What do you do when the bills go unpaid? ... (See Loans to friends)

How to handle family, friends' requests for money -- There's nothing wrong with wanting to help a loved one in a financial lurch, but not if it will derail your own finances. ... (See Saying no)

Credit card interest rates remain unchanged: CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report -- August 29, 2012 -- Credit card interest rates held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate Report)

Debt collectors have to prove the debt is yours -- Not sure that debt is yours? When pursued by collectors, you have the right to ask them to prove that the debt they want paid is truly yours ... (See Debt validation)

Credit card interest rates rise: CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report -- August 22, 2012 -- Credit card interest rates ticked up this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate Report)

Sued for debt, harassed by debt collectors -- A single and unemployed mom was sued for debt she owed two years ago. Now she's being harassed by collectors and wonders how to get them to stop ... (See Debt collection)

Supreme Court case could chill debt collection lawsuits -- In a case before the Supreme Court, consumer agencies argue debtors shouldn't have to pay costs of suing debt collectors ... (See Supreme Court debt collection case)

Removing yourself from a spouse's credit cards -- Authorized user or joint account holder? Depending on your status, there are different rules for getting your name off a credit card ... (See Joint credit)

When a debt is 'written off' what does that mean? -- When a debt is 'written off,' that's just an accounting term that means one -- and only one -- creditor has given up on it. You can be sure another will follow ... (See Written-off debt)

Credit card interest rates remain flat: CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report -- August 15, 2012 -- Credit card interest rates held steady for the third straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate Report)

5 steps to take to overcome financial trauma -- You hit bottom financially, now what? If you're struggling with fear, guilt or shame, it's time to pull up those bootstraps and move forward ... (See Financial trauma)

Fair Credit Reporting Act: a guide to your rights -- It's not always easy to get errors corrected on your credit reports. However, don't give up yet: You have a 1970 law on your side that can help ... (See Fair Credit Reporting Act)

Steps to contest, end wage garnishment - Tanisha Warner -- Even after you have a civil judgment against you and wages are being garnished, you have options to try and limit or end the taking of your wages ... (See Ending wage garnishment)

Steps to take to clear credit reports of fraudulent card account -- Getting an issuer and the credit bureaus to clear your record of a fraudulent account takes time and patience -- as well as a little know-how ... (See Credit bureau dispute)

2012 Olympic parents' financial struggles -- What do Olympic athletes Gabby Douglas, Ryan Lochte and Lolo Jones all have in common? Parents who are struggling financially ... (See 2012 Olympics)

Credit card interest rates remain unchanged: CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report -- August 8, 2012 -- Credit card interest rates held steady for the second straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate Report)

Million Dollar Listing's Josh Altman's reality check -- Reality TV Realtor Josh Altman shares his financial secrets for first-time homebuyers in a ever-changing real estate market ... (See Josh Altman)

5 credit mistakes expatriates can avoid -- Moving abroad? Don't make these common money and credit mistakes as they will make your return to the U.S. a lot less welcome ... (See Expat credit goofs)

Son's credit hurt when mom defaulted on account -- Requesting a credit card for your child to use -- even if they're a minor -- could make them an authorized user whose credit is affected ... (See Authorized user)

Skip tracer Ron Brown talks about debt collecting -- Meet Ron Brown, whose unique approach to locating debt evaders combines psychology, neurolinguistics and plain old jungle instinct ... (See Ron Brown)

Want to leap back in to credit cards? 8 things to look at first -- The same credit card issuers that may have dumped you or slashed your limit may suddenly be finding you more attractive. But how can you know if you should dive back into the relationship? ... (See Go back to your cards)

How debt management plans impact credit scores -- If your spending and debt are out of control, a visit to your local credit counselor can help -- but will entering into a debt management plan destroy your credit? ... (See Debt management plans)

Bankruptcy's effect on marriage -- A single woman in Florida, whose house is underwater, is considering bankruptcy. She worries how that will affect her chances at marriage ... (See Bankruptcy and marriage)

Credit card interest rates rise: CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report -- July 25, 2012 -- Credit card interest rates rose for the first time in nearly two months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate Report)

A credit crunch consequence: Bankruptcy filings decreasing -- The tightening of consumer credit during the economic downturn may be paying off: Consumer bankruptcy filings again plunged in the second quarter of 2012 ... (See Bankruptcies fall)

Credit card interest rates remain unchanged: CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report -- Credit card interest rates stayed put for the second straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate Report)

Never trust roommates to pay your bills: Erica Sandberg -- If a bill's in your name and your credit is on the line, trusting someone else to pay it on time in your absence is a mistake that can haunt you for seven years ... (See Roomie credit damage)

Though bad debts fall, lawsuits over collection practices rise -- Consumers are paying credit card bills on time more often and filing fewer bankruptcies, so why are lawsuits over debt collection soaring? ... (See Collection lawsuits)

Bad credit no longer keeping consumers out of the driver’s seat -- In the market for a new car but worry that your iffy credit score will put the brakes on getting a good deal? Take heart, a new report shows that you might be able to snag those keys after all. ... (See Bad credit car loans)

FICO introduces new, less traditional credit score -- Some consumers may hail Tuesday's release of the new FICO mortgage core powered by CoreLogic as a blessing. Others may see it as an unwanted invasion into their privacy that could make it even harder for them to secure a home loan ... (See Mortgage score)

Credit card interest rates stay flat: CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report -- Credit card interest rates remained untouched this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate Report)

Elderly Mom needn't worry about ailing Dad's debts -- With few jointly shared assets and little income, he's judgment proof; creditors should be politely but firmly told to go away ... (See Elderly credit card debt)

The high cost of rehab: expensive, but attainable -- Not every recovering addict can afford a swank rehab clinic, but everyone who needs help with substance abuse can find an affordable solution ... (See Rehab costs)

Is inheritance threatened by bankruptcy filing? -- Courts don't like people filing for bankruptcy shortly before they get an inheritance, so there are rules about when those funds are truly yours ... (See Inheritance at risk)

Credit card interest rates fall: CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report -- Credit card interest rates dipped this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Drug-related debt: A debilitating descent into financial ruin -- Substance abuse results in more than health and relationship wreckage: Financial disaster often follows, leading to financial ruin ... (See Debt and substance abuse)

Get a late start on building credit? Steps to boost score, qualify for a mortgage -- At 39 with just one credit card, a reader wants to boost her credit score to qualify for a mortgage in the near future. What are her options? ... (See Late start on credit )

IRS to tax-exempt hospitals: Go easier on medical debt collection -- Low-income Americans who fall behind on their medical bills will be spared the worst debt collection tactics under new IRS rules that grew out of the health care law ... (See Affordable Care Act)

A rapid rescore can fix your credit score in a hurry -- A few credit score points can mean the difference between a good mortgage rate and a lousy one. If errors are dragging down your score, a rapid rescore can help ... (See Rapid rescoring)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, June 27, 2012: Credit card interest rates stay put -- Credit card interest rates held steady for the third consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Does rehabilitating a student loan require a fee? -- If your federal student loan is in collections and you want to start paying again, beware of collectors who want to charge you an upfront fee ... (See Rehabbing student loans)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, June 20, 2012: Credit card interest rates stay flat -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained flat for the second consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

5 traits that go along with a lower credit score -- Paying your bills on time may help you achieve a high credit score, but studies say there are unexpected traits that correlate to your score as well ... (See Credit score traits)

Tanisha Warner: Should a judgment-proof debtor pay card debt anyway? -- An elderly couple with few assets but a Social Security and a military pension probably are untouchable by credit card collectors and the courts ... (See Judgment-proof debtors)

Sally Herigstad: How to fix surprise credit report errors -- You're ready to buy a home, pull your credit reports and find mysterious negative items on them, hurting your chances for the best interest rates. What do you do? ... (See Fix credit report errors)

Federal officials challenge payday lending from tribal sovereign entities -- Native American tribes have long had rights of sovereign immunity -- but are those rights being abused in the case of payday loans and extreme interest rates? ... (See Tribal-based payday lenders)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, June 13, 2012: Credit card interest rates don't budge -- Interest rates on new credit card offers stayed put this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

6 secrets about joint credit -- While occasionally useful, joint accounts have many unseen downsides you should know about before signing up ... (See 6 secrets about joint credit )

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, June 6, 2012: Credit card interest rates down slightly -- Credit card interest rates dipped slightly this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Getting debt free means stashing credit cards -- Sure, there are all kinds of credit products out there, but if you're trying to whittle down debt, the best option is to live a plastic-free life for a while ... (See Stash the plastic)

Tanisha Warner: Old, old debt brings new collection effort: Legal? -- Federal, state laws limit collectors in chasing you over a car loan debt more than a decade old ... (See Old debt, new collection)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, May 30, 2012: Credit card interest rates hold steady -- Credit card interest rates remained flat this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, May 23, 2012: Credit card interest rates rise for first time in six weeks -- After five straight weeks of no movement, credit card interest rates ticked upward to 14.93 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Why getting debt help may hurt new credit access -- The reasons that led you into a debt management plan may be the same reasons why credit card issuers keep turning your down for new credit ... (See Credit card rejection)

Winners and losers 3 years after Credit CARD Act -- Three years after President Obama signed the Credit CARD Act of 2009, consumers are better off, there are fewer complaints and huge interest rate hikes haven't come to pass ... (See CARD Act 3rd anniversary)

Passbook savings loans allow you to borrow against your own account balances -- Credit unions and some banks across the country offer a tool to help build credit: 'passbook savings loans' secured by your own savings ... (See Passbook savings loans)

Is it time to hire a daily money manager? -- Overweight? Hire a personal trainer. Dirty house? Get a cleaning service. But to whom do you turn to get a grip on overspending and debt? A daily money manager ... (See Daily money manager)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, May 16, 2012: Credit card interest rates don't budge -- Credit card interest rates remained unchanged for the fifth straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Tanisha Warner: Young debtor, learn the basics before it's too late -- At age 25, a reader with a $5,000 debt in collections is young enough to overcome the problem and establish a lifetime of good money habits ... (See Set good money habits)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, May 9, 2012: Credit card interest rates stay put -- Interest rates on new credit card offers stayed put for the fourth straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

6 reasons to avoid payday loans -- With all the bad press payday loans get, you'd think people would steer clear of them. But the lure of fast cash keeps them coming ... (See Payday loans)

Sally Herigstad: Dealing with a spouse's secret credit card debt -- When one spouse repeatedly lies about credit card debt and keeps it a secret, what's the other spouse to do? ... (See Secret credit card debt)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, May 2, 2012: Credit card interest rates remain unchanged for the third straight week -- Interest rates on new credit card offers held steady for the third straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Know where you stand before you apply for new credit -- To know what kind of credit card you can qualify for, you first need to know your credit score and pull your credit reports ... (See Applying for credit)

Is your doctor checking your credit report? -- A growing number of health care providers, including hospitals, surgeons, dentists' offices and fertility clinics, are checking patients' credit. And some consumer advocates are crying foul ... (See Medical credit checks)

Federal regulators scrutinize banks' 'advance direct deposit' loans -- Though banks tout them as superior to payday loans, their short-term lending alternative is drawing fire from consumer advocates and scrutiny from regulators ... (See Direct deposit advances)

Tanisha Warner: Your post-bankruptcy credit rebuilding plan -- From now on, on-time payments are a must, you'll likely need a secured card and make sure any lenders report to all the credit bureaus ... (See Credit after bankruptcy)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, April 25, 2012: Credit card interest rates remain unchanged for the second straight week -- Interest rates on new credit card offers held steady for the second straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Tanisha Warner: Collectors calling for a 12-year-old debt? Know and assert your rights -- A collector calling on a 12-year-old debt needs to prove you really owe it, and be told it's too old to be legally collectible. Just don't ignore it ... (See 12-year-old debt)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, April 18, 2012: Credit card interest rates remain unchanged -- Average credit card interest rates held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

State by state bankruptcy statistics, 2005-2012 -- Bankruptcy filings for the third quarter of 2012 show the number of filers continuing to decline, after a long series of increases that followed the 2005 bankruptcy law reform ... (See State bankruptcy statistics)

Tennessee surpasses Nevada to claim sad crown: State where bankruptcies are most likely -- Bankruptcy filings continued their decline nationally in the first quarter of 2012, nowhere more sharply than the Silver State ... (See Bankruptcy filings)

Tanisha Warner: When piggybacking, the good credit person adds bad credit person as authorized user -- Having the bad credit person add the good credit person as an authorized user won't help -- and could hurt ... (See Credit card piggybacking)

Fed watchdog backs down, OKs credit card fee before you even get the card -- Reversing position, the agency will allow application and administrative fees to be charged before accounts are opened and with no limit on the amount ... (See Credit card fees)

States, feds target debt settlement legal firms over upfront fees -- When the Federal Trade Commission banned upfront fees for debt settlement firms, a funny thing happened: More law firms suddenly began offering debt settlement services -- and charging upfront fees ... (See Debt settlement legal firms)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, April 11, 2012: Credit card interest rates drop -- Credit card interest rates dropped for the second straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

4 ways to survive the Money Hunger Games -- Being a victor when it comes to money and credit management requires skill, maximizing your resources and playing to win ... (See Money Hunger Games)

Tanisha Warner: After recovering from bad credit, ditch the bad credit credit card -- Yes, you may take a small, temporary credit card hit, but getting rid of a card with a $14.50 monthly fee is probably worth it ... (See Cancel that bad credit credit card)

Sally Herigstad: Defaulted car lease can lead to wage garnishment? -- If you stop paying your car lease, expect to be sued for the balance, and if you don't pay up, wage garnishment might be next ... (See Wage garnishment)

Auto loan payments now outrank mortgage, credit cards -- Mortgage payments used to come first, then housing collapsed. Credit card bills took priority after that, but today, it's car payments that are paid first ... (See Debt payment rankings)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, April 4, 2012: Credit card interest rates decline -- Credit card interest rates dropped to their lowest level since February, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate Report)

Sally Herigstad: Old, unpaid debts can resurface at any time -- You can change your name and move to another state, but old, unpaid debts have a sneaky way of finding you and ruining your credit ... (See Old credit card debt)

Q&A: 'Millionaire Mind' author T. Harv Eker talks money, debt and breaking bad habit -- "Secrets of the Millionaire Mind" author shares how your personal money blueprint can either make or break your financial goals ... (See T. Harv Eker)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Mar. 28, 2012: Credit card interest rates remain unchanged -- Credit card interest rates held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate Report)

Erica Sandberg: How to move student loans out of default -- Hollywood is missing out on a blockbuster horror movie: Student loans gone bad. Getting defaulted student loans back on track can drive you mad ... (See Student loans)

Sally Herigstad: Reduced payment plans not offered by all credit card issuers -- Need help getting your credit card payments reduced for a while? Be prepared to get different answers from your card issuers ... (See Reduced credit card payment plans)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Mar. 21, 2012: Credit card interest rates dip slightly -- Credit card interest rates dipped slightly this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Will banks lend again after your bankruptcy? -- A series of unfortunate events can suddenly lead to bankruptcy, but is the hit to your credit one that marks you for life? ... (See Getting a loan after bankruptcy)

Sally Herigstad: Rebuilding credit doesn't mean going back into debt -- A couple trying to recover from financial disaster want to know the best way to go about building up their lackluster credit scores ... (See Rebuilding credit scores)

Student loan debt: the next time bomb? -- Today's college graduates are hitting the job market with more debt and fewer prospects, setting up the prospect of another delinquency disaster ... (See Student loan debt)

Erica Sandberg: What to do when a family member uses your credit card without your permission -- When family members help themselves to your credit cards without your knowledge, you have every right to report that as a theft to the police ... (See Family credit card theft)

Sally Herigstad: It's never too late to learn how to manage your money -- Whether you're 18 or 50, taking the initiative to find out how to manage your money -- and your debt -- can prove to be fiscally satisfying ... (See Personal finance know-how)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Mar. 6, 2012: Moves by Chase, Best Buy push credit card interest rates higher -- Credit card interest rates jumped this week for the first time in nearly three months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Can you sue an authorized user for nonpayment? -- Protect yourself from authorized users on your credit card charging up a storm on your card and then leaving you with a huge unpaid balance ... (See Authorized users)

Sally Herigstad: How fast can I make a credit score comeback? -- Rebuilding good credit after running up bad debt requires time and patience, but every on-time payment helps the score-healing process ... (See Rebuilding credit)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Feb. 29, 2012: Credit card interest rates hit 8-month low -- The average interest rate on a new credit card offers fell to its lowest level since June of 2011, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: 6 tips for finding the right debt management plan for you -- Before you enter into a debt management plan, be sure to pick a credit counselor whose style and competence are a good match for you ... (See Debt management plan tips)

FTC: ID theft, debt collection top consumer complaint list in 2011 -- Credit cards and debt issues are tied in with many of the most-griped-about categories, but complaints about credit cards themselves fell in rank ... (See FTC consumer complaints)

Sally Herigstad: Laid off, but still liable for ex-employer's card debt -- An employee opened an AmEx business card in her name for her company, got laid off, and is now being held liable for the debt ... (See Small business debt)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Feb. 22, 2012: Credit card rates' holding pattern continues -- The average interest rate on a new credit card offer remained unchanged at 14.91 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Do debt management plans hurt your credit score? -- With $35,000 in debt, a couple decided to get help by entering into a debt management plan. But they worry how a DMP will impact their credit scores and future purchasing power ... (See Debt management plans)

Tanisha Warner: Are your mother's bank funds safe from your creditors? -- A debt-ridden woman worries her creditors may come after funds in an account she holds jointly with her mom. The good news is that mom's retirement funds are probably safe ... (See Joint accounts and garnishment)

Sally Herigstad: Don't restart the clock on expired debts -- If a collector attempts to contact you on a debt that has passed the statute of limitations, don't ignore him, but also don't reaffirm the debt ... (See Time-barred debt)

Watchdog agency proposes rules to supervise debt collectors, credit bureaus -- The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Thursday announced the first-ever plans to oversee the nation's largest debt collectors and credit reporting bureaus ... (See CFPB oversees credit bureaus, debt collectors)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Feb. 15, 2012: Credit card rates remain in holding pattern -- The average interest rate on a new credit card offer remained unchanged, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, as credit card APRs' recent holding pattern continued ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: First credit card? Follow these best practices -- Managing your first credit card the right way can set the stage for building up great credit. Used wrongly and you may spend years fixing your mistakes ... (See First credit card)

Canceled debt tax notices riddled with problems, advocate says -- The rules under which creditors report forgiven debts as income are so confusing and problem-prone that taxpayers are both burdened and frustrated ... (See Canceled debt tax notices)

Many people fail to claim exemption from canceled credit card debt income -- Frustrated by the complexity of the form and frustrated by debt, many people do not take advantage of their right to to cut taxes on forgiven debt ... (See Canceled debt 1099-C)

Sally Herigstad: Ex racks up $40,000 on joint credit cards -- After finally becoming debt-free, an ex-wife is dismayed to find her ex has racked up card debt on two old credit cards in her name ... (See Divorce and credit card debt)

Late on your credit card bill? Your auto could be seized -- Credit unions are especially fond of a clause that lets an financial institution seize cars or deposits if loans at the same institution go bad ... (See Cross-collaterization)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Feb. 8, 2012: Credit card rates hold steady for 2nd week -- The average interest rate on a new credit card offer remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, though issuers are still tweaking APRs ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: You can pay someone else's debt and not be liable for it -- A daughter elects to help her dad with his collection payments, but he wonders if she will then be held responsible for the debt ... (See Paying someone else's debt)

Q&A: Former Patriots cornerback Eugene Profit now runs for the money -- A five-year veteran of the NFL talks about why so many young players fall to financial ruin and what he did to avoid falling into the same pattern ... (See Eugene Profit)

Tanisha Warner: Failing to pay the minimum can get you sued -- It's a common question: Can credit card companies sue you if you pay, but don't pay enough. Unfortunately, if you have to ask, you probably won't like the answer ... (See Minimum payment failure)

Sally Herigstad: Can bankruptcy tap surprise inheritance? -- Having filed for Chapter 13, a woman discovers a surprise inheritance and worries whether she has to turn over the funds to her trustee ... (See Inheritance and bankruptcy)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Feb. 1, 2012: Credit card rates hit lowest levels in 5 months -- Interest rates on new credit card fell to their lowest levels since August 2011 this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Dad racks up charges on son's credit card -- A father fraudulently opened a credit card in his son's name and charged $5,000. Now he can't pay more than the minimum. What are his son's options? ... (See Credit card fraud)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Jan. 25, 2012: Credit card APRs unchanged for 2nd straight week -- Interest rates on new credit card offers held steady for the second straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Infographic: Bankers predict more credit cards, more delinquencies -- The next six months will likely see more people becoming delinquent with their credit -- and seeking more credit at the same time, according to a January 2012 survey by the Professional Risk Managers' International Association ... (See Bank predictions)

How to shape up your finances in 12 months -- The 12 months in a fresh new year give you 12 opportunities to get your credit shaped up and your budgeting under control. Here, experts offer one seasonally relevant idea for each month of 2012 to do exactly that ... (See Shape up your finances)

Sally Herigstad: Do you marry someone who has big debt? -- He may be Prince Charming, but marrying someone who is carrying a lot of debt can put a serious crimp in your ability to plan for the future ... (See Marriage and debt)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Jan. 18, 2012: Credit card rates hold steady -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Sally Herigstad: Dealing with unethical debt collectors -- If a collector threatens to throw you in jail over an unpaid debt, it's time to read him your rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act ... (See Fair Debt Collections Practices Act)

Infographic: 1 in 5 say better money management is top 2012 goal -- Handling money better is always one of the top New Year's resolutions, and 2012 is no different, according to a January 2012 poll from Chase ... (See Money management)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Jan. 11, 2012: Average APR drops following First Premier move -- Interest rates on new credit card offers fell this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, due to a sharp APR drop for the priciest card in our survey. ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Mom's on hook for daughter's card debt -- A daughter uses bankruptcy to delete debt only to discover her mom is responsible for $24,000 on a credit card she co-signed more than 20 years ago ... (See Co-signers and card debt)

Infographic: Medical bill trouble often part of larger money woes, survey says -- Have trouble paying your medical bills? Chances are that other aspects of your finances are suffering, too. That's according to a December 2011 survey from the Center For Studying Health System Change ... (See Medical bill woes)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Jan. 4, 2012: Credit card rates steady as 2012 begins -- Interest rates on new credit card offers were unchanged to start the new year, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Who do you pay when a debt goes into collection? -- When an unpaid debt is charged off and sold to a collector, who do try to negotiate a settlement with: the original creditor or the collector? ... (See Debt collection)

CreditCards.com survey: Penalty rates creep higher, but become rarer -- In the wake of the Credit CARD Act's restrictions, many card issuers no longer bother with penalty rates. But CreditCards.com research finds for those that retain them, the rate is even higher ... (See Penalty rates)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Dec. 28, 2011: Interest rates drop for the 2nd straight week -- Interest rates on new credit card offers fell for a second straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Military families under fire -- from predatory lenders -- They may be formidable fighters, but to predatory lenders, soldiers are seen as young, naive and easy pickings ... (See Military money)

Troops coming home from Iraq will have to navigate financial land mines -- Returning soldiers can face lower pay, the loss of legal protection and temptations all around them to spend ... (See Military money )

Sally Herigstad: Will bankruptcy stop wage garnishment? -- Before you even think of filing bankruptcy, make sure you've explored all the wage garnishment exclusions that you may qualify for ... (See Wage garnishment)

Helping military families avoid financial troubles -- Experts offer advice to troops on guarding their IDs, avoiding scams ... (See Military money)

Gary Foreman: You're marrying your fiance's debts, too -- If your future spouse has present debt, discuss it openly, keep your accounts separate and consider a long engagement to see if your intended can straighten up financially ... (See Fiance's debt)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Dec. 21, 2011: Credit card rates dip as holiday shopping nears end -- As the holiday shopping season nears an end, interest rates on new credit card offers fell from their record highs this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Tanisha Warner: Not paying your credit card bill after a rate hike won't help -- New columnist Tanisha Warner answers a question from a reader who just had her credit card rate hiked. She's thinking about not paying the bill. Tanisha says: No ... (See Rate hike)

Sally Herigstad: When does a debt get too old to collect? -- Hoping that your debt will get too old to be collectible is a risky proposition, not to mention a bit unethical ... (See Statutes of limitations on card debt)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Dec. 14, 2011: Credit card interest rates shoot to record high -- Interest rates on new credit card offers surged to a record high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Trying to escape a high APR via a balance transfer -- Trying to transfer a spouse's high-interest debt to your balance transfer card? Not all issuers will allow that to happen ... (See Balance transfer card)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Dec. 7, 2011: Credit card interest rates dip for 1st time in a month -- Interest rates on new credit card offers dipped slightly this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Kim McGrigg: Dad's bankruptcy may force daughter to pay joint card debt -- A worried mom wants to know if her daughter will be stuck paying the debt on a credit card she held jointly with her dad. Unfortunately, our expert says, that's likely the case ... (See Joint account)

Gary Foreman: Broke? Bad credit? Recent bankruptcy? Say humbug to lousy holiday loans -- If you're recovering from hard times, don't succumb to the lousy loan choices you have available. Find frugal ways to enjoy the season ... (See Bad credit and holidays)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Nov. 30, 2011: Credit card APRs remain in holding pattern -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Credit Card Help: Why your credit report matters more than your credit score -- Focusing only your credit score is like focusing only on your cholesterol number or your age – the number’s important, but not as important as how you got there. That’s why the real key to credit is your credit report ... (See Credit reports versus scores)

Sally Herigstad: Can wages be garnished before court date? -- If you've been served for past-due debt, don't wait until the official court hearing to respond or you may find your wages garnished before you're prepared ... (See Wage garnishment)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Nov. 23, 2011: Credit card APRs unchanged as holidays near -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week as banks took their traditional Thanksgiving break from changing rates, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Can I go back to college if student loans are in default? -- Unpaid student loans can haunt you for the rest of your life, but shouldn't keep you from pursuing your dreams of finishing college ... (See Unpaid student loans)

Sally Herigstad: Who pays secret debt in divorce? -- When a spouse living in a community property state has secret debt that comes to light during a divorce, just who has to pay for it? ... (See Secret debt in divorce)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Nov. 9, 2011: Credit card interest rates hold steady -- The average interest rate on a new credit card offer stayed static this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. However, that doesn't mean that all of the nation's largest credit card issuers were sitting on their hands ... (See Rate report)

Debtors to collectors: Show proof the debt is really owed -- With legislation and regulation aimed at leveling the playing field, a growing number of states are requiring collectors to prove a debt is really owed ... (See Debt collection rules)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Nov. 9, 2011: Credit card APRs inch up, near record high -- Interest rates on new credit card offers inched up this week for the first time in a month, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Make sure your payments make a dent in your debt -- Debt payments that don't seem to diminish your total debt can get frustrating. You have three options: pay more, seek help or bail ... (See Debt repayment tips)

Sally Herigstad: When bankruptcy makes sense -- With a sick spouse, $20,000 in credit card debt and a small salary, a woman wonders just how she is going to make ends meet.You probably can't, says Sally ... (See When bankruptcy makes sense)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Nov. 2, 2011: Credit card interest rates see 2nd drop in 3 weeks -- Interest rates on new credit card offers inched lower for the second time in three weeks, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Jeremy M. Simon: In honor of 100th column, Jeremy M. Simon's 3 favorite credit scoring questions -- For my 100th column addressing reader questions on credit scores and reports, I've taken a look back at some of emails that most surprised, challenged or amused me. ... (See Credit Score Report)

Kim McGrigg: Can you apply for credit after Chapter 13 bankruptcy? -- Even if you just want to use it for emergencies, a new credit card can be hard to get following Chapter 13 bankruptcy. However, you may have options ... (See Chapter 13 and new credit)

Great American financial failures: From Jefferson to Disney -- It’s easy to scoff at millionaire celebrities who declare bankruptcy, but overextended credit is a time-honored American tradition. Some of our greatest heroes have fallen victim to bad investments and living beyond their means. ... (See Great American financial failures)

Sally Herigstad: What benefits are exempt from garnishment? -- An unemployed Oregonian worries that her unemployment and Social Security will be garnished for unpaid credit card bills ... (See Wage garnishment)

TransUnion asked to stop selling credit reports to employers -- A coalition of consumer advocacy groups has called on credit bureau TransUnion to end the sale of credit reports to employers. ... (See Credit scores and employment)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Oct. 26, 2011: Credit card interest rates hold steady -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

6 money tips for late-in-life divorces -- Few leave marriages of any length unscathed, but the financial impact is often more extreme for those who've been together for decades ... (See Divorce money tips)

Jeremy M. Simon: Mending a credit score hurt by a student loan default -- A reader who defaulted on a co-signed student loan wonders whether a debt settlement is the best path to rebuilding her high credit score ... (See Student loan default)

Kim McGrigg: What to do when collectors pursue your time-barred debt -- Your debt may be really old, but that may not stop debt collectors from trying to get you to pay. Our expert lays out what to do if this happens to you ... (See Time-barred debt)

Sally Herigstad: Dissolving debt dissipates marital discord -- When too much debt keeps your family down, taking steps to pay it off can open up new doors of opportunity ... (See Debt and family)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Oct. 19, 2011: Credit card APRs see 1st drop in 3 months -- Interest rates on new credit card offers fell for the first time since July, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Predictive analytics: Issuers' crystal ball into card spending patterns -- Card issuers turn to algorithms to determine if you are about to leave them or are having trouble paying your bills -- and allows them to step in to turn the tide ... (See Credit card predictive analytics)

Jeremy M. Simon: In U.K., unheeded court order can clobber your credit -- A U.K. reader learns that a county court judgment that wasn't repaid within one month can tarnish his credit for years ... (See UK credit)

7 ways to protect your credit rating during unemployment -- Losing your job is bad enough; take these steps to minimize the damage and prevent trouble from iniltrating another part of your financial life ... (See Keeping credit during unemployment)

Sally Herigstad: Is an heir liable for her parent's credit card debt after death? -- A daughter inherited $70,000 from her father's estate, but it turns out he owes $400,000 in credit card debt. Will she have to forfeit her cash? ... (See Death and card debt)

4 types of money pros: What they are, how to find the right one for you -- Most of the time, a do-it-yourself ethic is all you need to keep your finances in line. But even the smartest amateurs can use some expert advice from time to time ... (See Money professionals)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Oct. 12, 2011: Credit card APRs reach another record high -- Another week, another record for credit card interest rates. APRs on new credit card offers reached 15 percent for the first time in the four-year history of CreditCards.com's Weekly Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Is 'unfreezing' a card a good thing? -- After a bank "freezes" your card due to nonpayment and a maxed-out status, will thawing it out help or hurt your credit score? ... (See Card suspension)

Sally Herigstad: Can debt judgments follow you overseas? -- If you leave the country -- and your debts -- behind, what are the chances that collectors and the law will find you to make you pay up? ... (See Leaving debt in U.S.)

Experian gets personal to teach about credit, but it'll cost you -- Got a question about your credit report? A major credit bureau is now offering consumers the chance to have their questions answered over the phone by a real, live person -- for a price ... (See Experian Credit Educator service)

How fnancial troubles sometimes actually help relationships -- Sometimes it takes an extreme situation to bring people together -- an illness, accident or even an act of terrorism. But what about a financial crisis? ... (See Financial troubles and relationships)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Oct. 5, 2011: Credit card rates unchanged, remain at record highs -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained at record highs this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Jeremy M. Simon: Authorized user's bad credit won't hurt primary cardholder -- A reader with bad credit worries that becoming an authorized user on her friend's credit card with lower her friend's credit score. ... (See Authorized users)

Cathleen McCarthy: Bankruptcy and frequent flier air miles - are they an asset, or protected? -- With 300,000 miles and $60,000 in debt, a reader fears his air miles might be seized if he files for bankruptcy. Our expert says his concerns are justified ... (See Bankruptcy and frequent flier miles)

Q&A with Mark Neeb, new head of debt collectors' association -- WIth the economy remaining in shambles, you might think these would be plush times for debt collectors. You'd be wrong, says the new head of the collectors' association, who says his industry is smarting from fewer bad debts and more regulation. ... (See Q&A with Mark Neeb)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Sept. 28, 2011: Credit card rates reach another record high -- Interest rates on new credit card offers edged up to another record high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Biggest losers of debt: Michigan couple honored for paying $92,000 credit card debt -- The federal government could learn a thing or two about debt reduction from Jerry and Sue Bailey, who have been honored for paying off their $92,000 credit card debt ... (See Biggest losers of debt)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Sept. 14, 2011: Credit card rates stay at record highs for 2nd straight week -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, as rates' upward climb paused following several volatile weeks ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Steps to starting over after losing everything -- Re-entering the workforce after a long-term illness in which you lost everything can seem daunting, but starting somewhere can make all the difference ... (See Starting over)

Jeremy M. Simon: Don't let bad credit keep you from landing a job -- Although some employers consider job applicants' credit histories when making hiring decisions, bad credit doesn't have to keep you from finding work ... (See Credit scores and jobs)

Kim McGrigg:Mortgage trumps title when it comes to foreclosures, credit -- Your name may no longer be on the title of your foreclosed house. But, our expert says, if it's still on the mortgage loan, there's still going to be a black mark on your credit ... (See Foreclosures and credit)

Sally Herigstad: Some spend lavishly right up to bankruptcy court -- A reader is miffed that his brother continues to spend on lavish vacations and purchases, even though he has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy ... (See Spending prior to bankruptcy)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Sept. 14, 2011: Credit card rates climb to another record high -- Interest rates on new credit card offers climbed to another record high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Kim McGrigg: How to prioritize debt payments when your income falls -- It's all too common these days: A down-on-his-luck cardholder struggling to make ends meet confronts more bills than he can pay, and needs help prioritizing them ... (See How to prioritize debt)

Can you get a credit card after bankruptcy? -- While the days of easy credit are over, credit card issuers still have products for bad credit customers to use to rebuild their credit profiles ... (See Credit after bankruptcy)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, Sept. 7, 2011: Credit card rates stay at record highs -- Interest rates on new credit card offers stayed at record highs this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: In a debt management plan? No new credit for you -- If you have negotiated with lenders through a credit counseling service to pay down your debt, the last thing you want to do is take on new loans ... (See Debt management plans)

Jeremy M. Simon: In credit scoring, a good payment history trumps all -- Don't worry about removing an old delinquent account from your credit report, our expert says. It's more important to have a strong payment history than a long one ... (See Payment history and FICO scores)

5 ways to rebuild credit after bankruptcy -- More than a million people filed for bankruptcy last year, and though it stays on your credit report for years, you can start turning your credit around in as little to 12 to 18 months ... (See Build credit after bankruptcy)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, August 31, 2011: Credit card rates rise to record high -- Interest rates on new credit card offers rose to a new record high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Record high rates)

Sally Herigstad: Help! Ex-spouse won't pay on co-signed car loan -- Even if your divorce decree says he has to pay, the bank doesn't care and has every right to go after the co-signer for payment ... (See Divorce and co-signed loans)

What is a charge-off? How does it affect your credit? -- The phrase charge-off comes from the world of financial accounting, but if one happens to you, expect the damage to your credit to be substantial ... (See Charge-offs)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, August 24, 2011: Credit card rates jump to near-record levels -- Interest rates on new credit card offers jumped to a near-record high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Set up charging rules on co-signed card -- A financially reformed mom co-signed on a card for her college-bound son, but worries that he may return her to financial ruin ... (See Co-signed credit card)

Sally Herigstad: How likely is it you'll be sued for unpaid debt? -- The likelihood of being sued for not paying outstanding credit card debt depends on a variety of factors, but take action before that happens ... (See Odds of being sued for debt)

6 tips for avoiding the 'freshman $15,000' -- The first year of college is famous for weight gain, known as the "freshman 15," but it's also bad for gaining debt. Six college students reveal how they gained, then shed, their "freshman $15,000" ... (See Freshman debt)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, August 17, 2011: Credit card APRs unchanged for 3rd straight week -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Weigh all costs when doing a balance transfer -- When thinking about transferring your balance to a lower rate card, you need to do the math and have a plan before you card-hop ... (See How to evaluate a balance transfer)

Jeremy M. Simon: Beware of interest charged on closed accounts in debt collection -- Collection agencies are allowed to charge you interest on debts in closed credit card accounts -- unless your card contract or state law says otherwise ... (See Interest on debt)

Kim McGrigg: New rules force banks to protect funds from garnishment -- At least part of Social Security income is protected from wage garnishment, and a new rule means banks must take steps to safeguard it ... (See Garnishment rule)

Cleveland tops list of cities most improved in on-time credit card payments -- San Antonio, Cincinnati, Houston and Dallas round out the top five cities that have improved most at reducing the number of credit card accounts more than 60 days late ... (See Credit card delinquencies)

Sally Herigstad: Keep creditors at bay during bankruptcy filing -- Her lawyer went on vacation before her filing was finished, and now she's being sued by a creditor. What are this reader's options? ... (See Bankruptcy filing)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, August 10, 2011: Credit card APRs unchanged in wake of U.S. credit downgrade -- Despite the downgrade of the nation’s credit rating and an announcement from the Federal Reserve, interest rates on new credit card offers stayed the same this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Sally Herigstad: Will bankruptcy impact an authorized user? -- Without a job and in debt, a wife considers bankruptcy, but asks if her husband is liable for debt on a credit card on which is an authorized user ... (See Authorized user, bankruptcy)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, August 3, 2011: Card APRs unchanged as run of declines stalls -- Credit card interest rates held steady this week, ending a two-week run of declines that brought APRs down from record levels ... (See Rate report)

Jeremy M. Simon: Can you remove a bankruptcy from your credit report? -- If you do a strategic bankruptcy filing -- but the move is never completed -- you may be able to have any mention of it removed from your credit report, but it won't be easy ... (See Bankruptcy)

Kim McGrigg: Are you liable for your late spouse's card debt? -- The death of a spouse can bring with it many financial questions, including whether you are liable for paying his or her debts. The answer, sadly, isn't so simple ... (See Debt and death)

Kim McGrigg: Don't worry if resold loan appears twice on credit report -- The same loan may appear multiple times on your credit report -- once with the original lender and again with the collector -- but it only impacts your credit once ... (See Credit report)

First Premier sues Fed, watchdog agency over new credit card rules -- Subprime issuer First Premier and its marketing arm are suing the Federal Reserve and the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau over new credit card rules slated to take effect in October ... (See Lawsuit)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, July 27, 2011: Credit card APRs take 2nd straight dip -- Credit card interest rates dipped for the second straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Auto repair, credit and debt issues top consumer complaint list -- A survey of government consumer agencies puts auto repair and credit and debt issues at the top of the complaint list, and budget cuts mean the agencies can't keep up with the volume ... (See Consumer complaints)

Feds lay down rules for contacting relatives of deceased debtors -- Collecting money from the relatives of deceased debtors is fine, new federal guidelines say, but debt collectors must be transparent about what they do ... (See Death and debt colletion)

Nonprofits innovate to help low-income people establish credit -- With good credit increasingly important to living a mainstream life, the agencies are finding ways to step into the gaps that prevent people from starting and building credit ... (See Credit help)

What reality TV teaches us about credit and spending -- A slew of reality TV shows are tapping into our collective concern about saving money, spending it, turning clutter into cash and dealing with debt ... (See Reality TV money lessons)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, July 20, 2011: Business card drop sends credit card APRs off record highs -- Business card interest rates took a dip this week, sending overall credit card APRs down from record highs, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

15-minute fixes for your credit score -- Spending just 15 minutes on these expert tips can give your credit score anywhere from a small bump to a major boost ... (See Quick credit fixes)

Report highlights consumer confusion about credit scores -- In a report released Tuesday, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau protection agency acknowledged that consumers have good reason to feel confused about their credit scores. ... (See Credit report confusion)

Kim McGrigg: How much can a debt collector take from your paycheck? -- If you have a written deal with a debt collector to withdraw a set monthly amount from your bank account, the collector can't take a penny more. If he does, spring into action ... (See Debt collected from your pay)

Get out of debt smartphone apps -- Creating and sticking to a budget may not be fun, but using your smartphone to help you get out of debt sure beats updating budget spreadsheets on Quicken and Excel ... (See Debt-fighting smartphone apps)

Sally Herigstad: Duped by son, mom stuck with $20,000 debt -- What is a 76-year-old woman to do when she co-signs on credit cards and a car loan for her adult son and then he files for bankruptcy? ... (See Co-signing dangers)

State by state bankruptcy statistics, 2005-2011 -- Bankruptcies reversed course and fell in 2011, but it's not just due to debt aversion. We may just be running out of people who benefit from filing ... (See State bankruptcy statistics)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, July 13, 2011: Credit card APRs stay at record highs -- Summer vacationers, beware: Credit card interest rates stayed at record heights for a second straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Length of credit history: What it means to your score -- The best credit scores are aged, like fine wine, and without at least some length of credit history, you won't have a score at all ... (See FICO score)

My credit, myself: Young adults using credit to boost self-esteem -- In an uncertain world, recent research shows that for some 20-somethings, it just takes a quick swipe of a credit card to feel like they’ve got everything under control ... (See Credit and self-esteem)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, July 6, 2011: Credit card APRs hit record high -- Interest rates on new credit card offers soared to record heights this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

New Fed, FTC rules mean more free credit scores for consumers -- Final rules issued by the Federal Reserve and Federal Trade Commission mean more credit applicants will be receiving free credit scores starting later this month. ... (See Free credit scores)

Erica Sandberg :How do banks determine a credit card's credit limit? -- When banks issue you a credit card, how do they figure out how much credit to give you? Part of it is secret, the other part not so much ... (See Credit limits)

Credit court: TV judges' best cases and advice -- Three top celebrity gavel-wielders reveal their most unforgettable credit and debt cases -- and give some free legal advice to boot ... (See TV judges)

Kim McGrigg: Declared bankruptcy? You can still be an authorized user -- A reader wonders if he can still be listed as an authorized user on his wife's credit card account if he declares bankruptcy ... (See Credit after bankruptcy)

Sally Herigstad: It's a bad idea to pay one credit card and stop paying the others -- A reader wonders what would happen if she tried to pay off one credit card bill first and not pay on the others. Our expert says she'll only make matters much worse ... (See Stop paying cards)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, June 29, 2011: Credit card APRs see rare drop -- Credit card interest rates fell this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- just the second drop since March ... (See APRs fall)

Erica Sandberg: Will student's credit suffer if mom doesn't pay school loans? -- A mom wants to know if if her son's credit will be in jeopardy if she cannot make the payments on a Parent PLUS college loan ... (See Student loans)

How FICO scores work: Credit utilization -- If you want to earn a good credit score, you'll need to pay attention to your amounts owed. This credit utilization ratio goes by many names, and it's the second-most important factor used to calculate a borrower's FICO score ... (See Credit utilization )

Jeremy M. Simon: Want accurate, negative info off your credit report? Good luck -- A reader wonders if she could request that she could have some negative information removed from her credit report. Not likely, if the data is accurate. ... (See Credit report)

QA with Matt Paxton, host of TV's 'Hoarders' -- The 'Secret Lives of Hoarders' author and TV host goes about helping with brutal honesty and a connoisseur's appreciation for the smell of decomposition ... (See Matt Paxton, "Hoarders" host)

Sally Herigstad: Collectors can refuse partial payments -- Our expert dispels the myth that submitting a partial payment on an old debt will prevent a collection agency from taking you to court ... (See Debt collection myth)

Credit card interest rates move higher, near record levels -- Credit card interest rates rose slightly this week, edging closer to record heights. The national average APR on new card offers climbed to 14.84 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Beware of debt relief phone call promises -- A woman wonders if those debt relief phone callers can help cut her $20,000 in credit card debt in half ... (See Debt settlement)

How your FICO credit score is calculated: Payment history -- In the calculation of your FICO credit score, no factor is more important than your payment history. That history's comprised of many complex components, but ultimately, it comes down to paying your bills on time, every time ... (See Credit score payment history)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report, June 15, 2011: Credit card APRs unchanged for 3rd straight week -- Credit card interest rates stayed steady again this week, but that doesn't mean issuers were sitting on their hands ... (See Rate report)

5 money 'rules' meant to be broken -- You've heard all the financial truisms, and while many have a kernel of truth, some axioms should get the ax ... (See 5 money rules to break)

Sally Herigstad: How many times can creditors buy old debts? -- Negative credit information should fall off your credit report after seven years, but sometimes collectors disregard the rules ... (See Get rid of old debt)

CreditCards.com weekly rate report, June 8, 2011: Interest rates unchanged for 2nd straight week -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged for the second straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Steps to make good on a defaulted student loan -- A reader wants to make good on a defaulted student loan and wonders how to go about "rehabilitating" it ... (See Student loans)

7 big post-divorce money mistakes -- Breaking up is not only hard to do, it can be brutal on your finances -- especially if you commit one of these big financial goof ups ... (See Divorce and money)

Kim McGrigg: To raise credit score, pay delinquent debt? Or declare bankruptcy? -- A reader so deep in debt she's weighing bankruptcy wonders how to get good credit in a year. Years plural, says our expert. ... (See Bankruptcy)

Sally Herigstad: Inheritance rules after you've filed for bankruptcy -- A reader wants clarification of the 180-day rule about inheriting money after you've filed for bankruptcy ... (See Bankruptcy and inheritance)

Credit card application rejected? 3 steps to getting next one approved -- Rejected for a new credit card? Take these steps to make sure that the next time you apply for new plastic you are approved ... (See Credit rejection)

CreditCards.com weekly rate report, June 1, 2011: Interest rates unchanged this week -- The average annual percentage rate (APR) on new credit card offers was unchanged this week, staying fixed at 14.83 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Daughter's credit at risk when mom defaults -- A mom defaulted on three credit cards where her minor child was an authorized user. She wonders if her daughter's credit is in jeopardy ... (See Piggybacking)

Jeremy M. Simon: Who's to blame for mom's falling FICO? -- A mother thinks her falling FICO score may be the fault of her financially troubled daughter. But a look at the mom's credit reports will confirm who's really to blame. ... (See Credit score)

Want a secured card? Experts offer advice on managing secured card accounts -- Secured cards have higher rates and fees, but their terms vary, so it pays to comparison shop and ask questions ... (See Secured credit cards)

Navy FCU secured credit card fee schedule -- Here's the 2011 fee schedule for the Navy FCUsecured credit card, according to the CreditCards.com/Bankrate.com annual Credit Card Fee Survey ... (See Navy FCU secured credit card fees)

Redstone FCU secured credit card fee schedule -- Here's the 2011 fee schedule for the Redstone FCU secured credit card, according to the CreditCards.com/Bankrate.com annual Credit Card Fee Survey ... (See Redstone FCU secured credit card fees)

San Diego FCU secured credit card fee schedule -- Here's the 2011 fee schedule for the San Diego FCU secured credit card, according to the CreditCards.com/Bankrate.com annual Credit Card Fee Survey ... (See San Diego FCU secured credit card fees)

Suncoast Schools FCU secured credit card fee schedule -- Here's the 2011 fee schedule for the Suncoast Schools FCU secured credit card, according to the CreditCards.com/Bankrate.com annual Credit Card Fee Survey ... (See Suncoast Schools FCU secured credit card fees)

The Golden 1 CU secured credit card fee schedule -- Here's the 2011 fee schedule for the The Golden 1 CU secured credit card, according to the CreditCards.com/Bankrate.com annual Credit Card Fee Survey ... (See The Golden 1 CU secured credit card fees)

US Bank secured credit card fee schedule -- Here's the 2011 fee schedule for the US Bank secured credit card, according to the CreditCards.com/Bankrate.com annual Credit Card Fee Survey ... (See US Bank secured credit card fees)

Wells Fargo secured credit card fee schedule -- Here's the 2011 fee schedule for the Wells Fargo secured credit card, according to the CreditCards.com/Bankrate.com annual Credit Card Fee Survey ... (See Wells Fargo secured credit card fees)

AmeriCU secured credit card fee schedule -- Here's the 2011 fee schedule for the AmeriCU secured credit card, according to the CreditCards.com/Bankrate.com annual Credit Card Fee Survey ... (See AmeriCU secured credit card fees)

Bank of America secured credit card fee schedule -- Here's the 2011 fee schedule for the Bank of America secured credit card, according to the CreditCards.com/Bankrate.com annual Credit Card Fee Survey ... (See Bank of America secured credit card fees)

Capital One secured credit card fee schedule -- Here's the 2011 fee schedule for the Capital One secured credit card, according to the CreditCards.com/Bankrate.com annual Credit Card Fee Survey ... (See Capital One secured credit card fees)

Citibank secured credit card fee schedule -- Here's the 2011 fee schedule for the Citibank secured credit card, according to the CreditCards.com/Bankrate.com annual Credit Card Fee Survey ... (See Citibank secured credit card fee schedule)

Digital FCU secured credit card fee schedule -- Here's the 2011 fee schedule for the Digital FCU secured credit card, according to the CreditCards.com/Bankrate.com annual Credit Card Fee Survey ... (See Digital FCU secured credit card fees)

Fifth Third Bank secured credit card fee schedule -- Here's the 2011 fee schedule for the Fifth Third Bank secured credit card, according to the CreditCards.com/Bankrate.com annual Credit Card Fee Survey ... (See Fifth Third Bank secured credit card fees)

GTE FCU secured credit card fee schedule -- Here's the 2011 fee schedule for the GTE FCU secured credit card, according to the CreditCards.com/Bankrate.com annual Credit Card Fee Survey ... (See GTE FCU secured credit card fees)

Kim McGrigg: Will card debt hold up my Australian visa? -- A reader ran up credit card debt in Australia, left, and now wants to move back. Will the debt jeopardize his return? ... (See Card debt and visas)

Sally Herigstad: How canceled debt can come back as a tax bill -- After her debt was written off in 1998, a reader is socked with a tax bill for $1,392 for the debt cancellation. She wonders if this is legal and if she really has to pay it ... (See 1099-C tax for canceled debt)

Debtors Anonymous: What you can expect -- If your financial situation has led you to Debtors Anonymous, but you've been too afraid to go to a meeting, here's what you can expect ... (See Debtors Anonymous)

CreditCards.com weekly rate report, May 25, 2011: Average APRs fall on new card offers -- A move by Wells Fargo to cut the rates on two of its popular rewards cards caused the national average to fall in CreditCards.com's weekly rate report ... (See Weekly credit card rate report, May 25, 2011)

QA with Adam Baker of Man Vs. Debt -- Blogger Adam Baker shares his journey from a traditional, credit card-driven lifestyle to one where he and his wife owe no one ... (See Adam Baker)

Erica Sandberg: Rejected: How your credit history impacts card approvals -- A student is rejected for a new credit due to a limited credit history and wonders what he can do to boost his credit scores further ... (See Credit history)

Why overexposing kids to money problems is a bad idea -- Parents who use money to control their kids or share too much information about financial problems can create lasting damage ... (See Financial incest)

Sally Herigstad: Years of caregiving can lead to bankruptcy -- A reader gave up everything to care for her ailing mom and now faces mounting debt, no money and no job. Is bankruptcy the answer? ... (See Bankruptcy and debt)

5 mental money traps to avoid -- Turning your finances around is never easy, and these five mental money traps can keep you from making much progress ... (See Money traps)

Credit card interest rates climb higher -- Credit card interest rates jumped this week, after Discover raised the rate on one of its business cards. But that wasn't the only troubling news for those looking for a business credit card. ... (See Rate report)

Jeremy M. Simon: Lost a court case? Your credit score could take a hit -- A reader facing a lawsuit after a car accident needs to protect herself from the credit score impact from any resulting judgment against her ... (See Lawsuits and credit scores)

Horsing around with credit card debt: a cautionary tale -- CreditCards.com's Erica Sandberg relays a story about one memorable encounter she had as a credit counselor with someone who needed a reality check about her finances. See what you can learn from her story about Mary and her daughter's horse riding lessons ... (See Credit card debt)

Credit card interest rates stay steady -- Interest rates on credit card offers stayed static this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, though banks aren't standing idly ... (See Weekly rate report, May 11, 2011 )

7 questions to ask when choosing a secured credit card -- If you're shopping for a secured credit card, chances are you can't afford to make a mistake. These questions will help you find a good one ... (See Secured credit cards)

Erica Sandberg: Are credit protection plans worth the cost? -- In all her years working with people with credit problems, our expert has never heard someone exclaim, 'My credit protection plan was a lifesaver!' ... (See Credit protection plans)

Jeremy M. Simon: Settling delinquent debt won't remove it from your credit report -- A reader wants to get old delinquent debt off his credit report. Our expert says that unless the debt isn't really his, he's out of luck and debt will stay there for seven years ... (See Delinquent debts)

Credit card interest rates move higher -- Credit card interest rates moved higher this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report. ... (See Interest rates)

Sally Herigstad: Government benefits protected from garnishment -- A disabled woman is being harassed by collectors for an unpaid $300 credit card bill. A new law protecting government assistance funds is on her side ... (See Protected from garnishment)

QA: Holly Petraeus tackles those who prey on military families -- As the daughter of one general and wife of another, Holly Petraeus gets fighting mad at those who prey financially on soldiers. Now she can do something about it ... (See Holly Petraeus)

Jeremy M. Simon: Scheming to ruin an ex's credit score isn't wise -- A woman with lousy credit wants to ruin her ex-boyfriend's good credit by adding him as an authorized user on her card account. But should she reconsider her plan? ... (See Piggybacking scheme)

FICO reveals credit score damage from paying mortgage late and foreclosure -- Data shared by credit scoring giant FICO shows the point damage -- and length of recovery time -- that can follow several types of mortgage payment mishaps ... (See Mortgages and credit scores)

New rule protects exempted funds from garnishment orders -- For debtors who face frozen bank accounts due to a garnishment order, a new rule prevents exempted funds from being temporarily seized ... (See Wage garnishment)

Credit card interest rates unchanged again -- With the cost of gas and groceries rising, consumers can take some solace in one thing that hasn't changed much lately -- credit card interest rates ... (See Rate report, April 27, 2011 )

6 myths about credit report checks by employers -- Are employers truly weeding out applicants by checking potential employee credit reports? The reality may surprise you ... (See Employee credit checks )

Kim McGrigg: Debt on his late mother's credit card haunts son -- He was only an authorized user on his late mother's card, but a mistake lays his mother's charged-off debt at his feet, hurting his credit score ... (See Authorized user)

Sally Herigstad: 5 steps to take when debt collectors threaten to put a lien on your home, property -- The FTC prohibits collectors from threatening to put a lien on your property for unpaid debt -- unless they really intend to follow through ... (See Property liens)

Financial denial: When avoidance creates money mayhem -- In our final installment of money disorder stories, we focus on financial denial -- when the anxiety of dealing with debt is so great that you just check out ... (See Financial denial disorder)

How to remove an authorized user from a credit card account -- Card issuers' policies vary in the details, but If you've been added as an authorized user on another person's credit card account, call the issuer if you want to be removed ... (See Authorized user)

Weekly Credit Card Rate Report: Shift in student cards sends credit card interest rates higher -- The average annual percentage rate (APR) on introductory credit card offers climbed to 14.67 this week, its first jump since late February ... (See Credit card Weekly Rate Report, April 20)

Bankruptcy filings fall in first quarter of 2011 -- The economy has improved and tight credit means there's less debt to file over, but it's not clear that the decline in bankruptcy will last ... (See Bankruptcy filings)

Lawsuits over credit card debts spike in California, Nevada, Florida -- Courts officials in Nevada, Florida and California -- the states hardest hit by recession -- report they're seeing a parade of credit-card debt cases ... (See Credit card debt lawsuits)

Sally Herigstad: Why co-signing on a card for an ex is a mistake -- An elderly divorcee co-signed on a credit card to help her ex-husband. Then he died, leaving her to deal with the collection calls and debt ... (See Credit card co-signing)

Credit card interest rates unchanged for 5th straight week -- Interest rates on credit card offers remained unchanged for a record fifth straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, and experts say that’s good news for consumers ... (See Rate report)

Sally Herigstad: Don't settle on a debt for more than you can pay -- When a debt goes into collections, don't agree to a payment plan that you can't realistically pay each month. Explore your budget and your options first ... (See Debt collection)

7 free ways to reduce the stress caused by money, finances -- If you want to solve those money problems, you need a clear mind, healthy body, experts say. Here are simple ways to get them back ... (See Money stress)

Erica Sandberg: How new U.S. residents can build a credit history -- A new U.S. resident wants to build good credit but is baffled by the credit scoring system. Our expert shows him how to get started on the road to great credit ... (See Building credit)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report: Credit card interest rates steady for record 4th straight week -- Interest rates on new credit card offers held steady for a record fourth straight week on Wednesday, according to CreditCards.com's Weekly Rate Report. But that doesn't mean issuers are sitting on their hands. ... (See Rate report)

Credit card interest rates unchanged for record 3rd straight week -- For the first time since CreditCards.com began tracking interest rates in 2007, APRs on new credit card offers remained unchanged for a third week in a row, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Fed survey: Recession robbed net worth of 6 in 10 American families -- A Federal Reserve survey puts numbers to what we already know: The 2007-2009 Great Recession took a horrible toll on most families ... (See Recession robbed net worth)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report: Credit card interest rates unchanged for second straight week -- The average annual percentage rate (APR) on new credit card offers remained unchanged at 14.65 percent for the second straight week, according to CreditCards.com's Weekly Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

10 credit commandments for young professionals -- The money habits you form in your 20s can set you up for financial success -- or failure. Be savvy with your cash early and reap the rewards later ... (See New to credit)

Sally Herigstad: Protecting your credit during a divorce -- When faced with divorce, it's important to seek the advice of an attorney before agreeing to leave your home or trying to pay off joint debt ... (See Divorce and debt)

6 financial mistakes to avoid in divorce -- If you're not careful, a divorce can wreck your credit and your financial future. Protect yourself against these common financial mistakes ... (See Money and divorce)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report: Credit card interest rates stay steady -- The average annual percentage rate (APR) on new credit card offers held steady at 14.65 percent on Wednesday, according to CreditCards.com's Weekly Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Are you suffering from a money disorder? Maybe it's time to consider financial therapy? -- Do you overspend, blow your budget, obsess over your cash (or lack of it?). Then a new breed of expert -- financial therapists -- are ready to help ... (See Financial therapy)

Erica Sandberg: Mom ruined your credit? 7 steps to recover it -- A young man is starting his career with bad credit, thanks to his mom stealing his identity years before. Our expert outlines how he can get his credit back on track ... (See Recover from ID theft)

Todd Ossenfort: The Credit Guy's top 5 money tips -- After writing his column for the past three years, columnist Todd Ossenfort leaves his readers with these top five financial lessons ... (See Top 5 money lessons)

QA with 'Super Rich' author and hip-hop entrepreneur Russell Simmons -- In a wide-ranging interview, the hip-hop entrepreneur promotes spirituality, peace and defends the fees on his prepaid RushCard ... (See Russell Simmons)

CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report: Barclays' move sends credit card interest rates lower -- Credit card interest rates inched lower for the second straight week as more banks begin testing offers for the spring ... (See Credit card rate report, March 9, 2011)

How to react to these 7 cringe-worthy credit moments -- Your card's been declined, an employer wants to run your credit report and your landlord laughs when he runs your credit. How to handle these embarrassing situations with aplomb ... (See Cringe-worthy credit moments)

Todd Ossenfort: Can collectors come after your inheritance? -- Public records are perused by debt collectors. If they find out you've inherited a chunk of cash, don't be surprised if they come out of the woodwork ... (See Debt collection)

Credit card interest rates see 1st drop of 2011 -- Credit card interest rates declined this week for the first time in nearly three months. But it’s not all good news for consumers, as card offers for applicants with poor credit continue to be costly ... (See Credit card rate report, March 2, 2011)

Consumers lack basic credit score knowledge, survey shows -- According to a new survey from VantageScore and the Consumer Federation of America, two of every three Americans believe -- incorrectly -- that a consumer's age is a factor used in calculating a credit score. But that's not the only misconception. ... (See Credit score)

Todd Ossenfort: Neglecting one credit card bill can ruin your credit -- A reader has four credit cards, but only wants to pay on three of them. He wonders what will happen if he follows through ... (See Not paying credit card bills)

Sally Herigstad: Bankruptcy can steal inheritance, even if it hasn't yet been received -- A reader wants to file for bankruptcy, but worries the judge will tap her deceased father's lawsuit settlements bequeathed to her to pay off her debts ... (See Bankruptcy and inheritance)

Gary Foreman: Renters: How to protect yourself if your landlord faces foreclosure -- A federal law temporarily provides some protection against instant eviction, but check to see if the mortgage is being paid ... (See Renters face foreclosure, too)

Credit card interest rates rise to highest level since December -- Credit card interest rates rose slightly this week -- puncturing a multiweek lull in which all 30 credit card issuers that CreditCards.com tracks left interest rates alone. ... (See Credit card rate report, Feb. 23, 2011)

Survey: Recession still hurting saving, retirement funds -- A national survey finds that the lingering effects of the recession are causing more Americans to become concerned about its impact on their personal finances ... (See Recession's financial effects linger)

Debt collectors seek right to 'robocall' cell phones -- The next debt collection battleground is your cell phone. Debt collectors say autodialing debtors is good for consumers, but the move may add to its image as a pest ... (See Debt-collection robo-calls)

Jeremy M. Simon: Rent-to-own home payments unlikely to aid credit score -- A wife looking to improve her and her husband's credit scores shouldn't rely only on the rent-to-own payments for her new house ... (See Rent-to-own and credit)

Sally Herigstad: Jobless adult children rack up debt on mom's cards -- Three grown sisters have defaulted on $40,000 they racked up on their mother's plastic and wonder what they can do to fix the situation ... (See Charging on mom's plastic)

How your girlfriends can ruin your credit -- Advice from gal pals is a good thing, but maybe not so much if they encourage you to spend yourself into debt ... (See Friends and your credit)

Credit card interest rates unchanged for 2nd straight week -- Credit card interest rates remained unchanged this week as banks returned, after a period of tumultuous change, to their seasonal slow period ... (See Rate report, Feb. 16, 2011)

Help! The bank keeps cutting my card's credit limit -- A cardholder who racked up a large amount of debt wants to know why the bank keeps lowering his credit limit ... (See Credit limits)

QA with bankruptcy lawyer Ted Connolly, author of 'Road Out of Debt' -- Just how bad should debt be before bankruptcy makes sense? What can you do to avoid it? We asked finance and bankruptcy attorney Theodore W. Connolly, author of "The Road Out of Debt: Bankruptcy and Other Solutions to Your Financial Problems." ... (See "Road Out Of Debt")

When you marry Mr. Debt, be prepared to pay -- Exchanging vows with a debt-laden spouse doesn't make his debts yours, but it puts your relationship on high alert from the get go ... (See Marrying into debt)

8 creative ways to stay debt-free -- After months or years of paying down your debt, keeping yourself away from temptation can become difficult. Experts offer creative solutions to stay on track. ... (See Stay debt-free)

Erica Sandberg: The truth about Social Security benefits and wage garnishment -- Social Security benefits, in most cases, can't be taken as part of a wage garnishment. But a reader wonders how can tell those funds apart from other types of monies ... (See Social Security)

Credit card interest rates remain near record highs -- Credit card interest rates on new card offers were unchanged this week, lingering near record highs. ... (See Rate report)

Jeremy M. Simon: How loan applications hurt your credit score -- When applying for a loan, be prepared for a small ding to your credit score as lenders check your creditworthiness ... (See Hard inquiry)

Todd Ossenfort: Ignoring debt lawsuit can lead to wage garnishment -- When a court summons appears about an unpaid debt, it is best not to ignore it. Creditors can get orders to garnish your wages and seize funds from your bank account ... (See Wage garnishment)

Chase move sends credit card interest rates higher -- Interest rates on new credit card offers, already in near-record heights, continued their slow, steady climb this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Spouse won't stop spending? Get a 'financial divorce' -- If a spouse repeatedly overspends, do what you can to rein in the bad spending habits -- but also protect your credit by separating yourself financially ... (See Financial divorce)

Jeremy M. Simon: Business card debt may hurt credit, even after the company is sold -- A former business owner wonders whether his old company's unpaid debt could show up on his personal credit report ... (See Business credit cards)

Todd Ossenfort: Stop paying or file bankruptcy: Which path is less painful? -- A low-income senior citizen read advice that instead of filing for bankruptcy protection, he should just stop paying his credit card bills ... (See Bankruptcy protection)

Sally Herigstad: Put off marriage until after bankruptcy -- A reader wants to get married and then file for bankruptcy. Our expert warns her of starting off a marriage on such uneven financial footing ... (See Marriage and bankruptcy)

5 tools for rebuilding your post-recession credit -- A number of credit issuers are stepping up offers to consumers working to regain their financial footing, after months of keeping their coffers closed ... (See Rebuilding your credit)

Erica Sandberg: The pros and cons of debt management plans -- A reader says he regrets entering into a debt management plan because of its impact on his credit. Our expert says his old, free-spending ways, not the plan, caused the damage ... (See Debt management plan)

Credit card interest rates unchanged, stay near record highs -- Credit card interest rates remained unchanged this week as banks took a break from adjusting new card offers. ... (See Rate report)

Jeremy M. Simon: Apartment security deposit dispute stains renter's credit report -- A renter learns that removing apartment damage fees from his credit report will require a solid case and good negotiating skills. ... (See Credit report damage)

Credit card balance transfers: How to find the best deals -- Those 0 percent credit card balance transfer offer dwindled during the recession. Now, they're making a comeback -- but you have to watch for the fees and fine print ... (See Find the best deals on credit card balance transfers)

Sally Herigstad: Laid off: Which bills HAVE to be paid? -- You saved for a rainy day and it's raining. After being laid off, a reader watches her emergency funds dwindle and wonders which bills she can stop paying ... (See Laid off, in debt)

QA: Liz Weston's new money commandments -- To help consumers navigate through this new financial climate, money expert Liz Weston talks about her new book, “The 10 Commandments of Money: Survive and Thrive in the New Economy.” ... (See Liz Weston)

Barclays, State Farm push credit card interest rates higher -- Credit card interest rates again crept nearer to record levels, spurred by rate increases by Barclays and State Farm Bank, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report. ... (See Interest rate report)

Erica Sandberg: How to handle unethical debt collectors -- Our expert tells a reader that he has some recourse against the debt collector that is using some questionable tactics in pursuit of his defaulted student loan ... (See Debt collectors)

Todd Ossenfort: Credit card use rights die with the account holder -- Family members want to keep using their dead mother's credit card -- even though the issuer has closed the account. There are legal -- and moral -- issues here ... (See Credit card use after cardholder's death)

You are not your credit score: Credit and self-esteem -- A low credit score can be a devastating blow to a person's self-esteem, but by changing your focus and taking small steps to distance yourself from your score, you can minimize the impact of those three digits on your psyche ... (See Credit and self-esteem)

Credit card interest rates unchanged, despite Chase and Barclays moves -- Credit card interest rates remained unchanged this week, despite tweaks to card offers from Barclays and Chase ... (See Rate report)

Personal bankruptcies rose 8 percent in 2010 -- Housing bubble states led the pack in bankruptcies, with California and Florida having the most people file. Hawaii had the largest percentage increase and Nevada the most per capita ... (See 2010 bankruptcies)

State bankruptcy rankings, 2010: Nevada holds its sad crown -- The recession and high debt levels are hurting people in every state, but bankruptcies are not at all evenly spread. Someone in Nevada is seven times more likely to file than an Alaskan ... (See Bankruptcy filings)

Debt settlement industry in flux as new rules start -- For-profit companies can no longer charge clients upfront fees for debt negotiations, so the industry is undergoing a shakeout. What's that mean for consumers in debt? ... (See Debt settlement changing)

Sally Herigstad: Foreclosure's impact on married couples -- When a mortgage is in one spouse's name, if you choose to foreclosure, the impact to the other spouse's credit can depend on whether you live in a community property state ... (See Credit and foreclosure)

Barclays' moves send credit card interest rates higher -- Credit card interest rates rose slightly this week after Barclays raised interest rates on two of its cards. ... (See Credit card APRs)

Issuers may freeze, seize your bank account if you pay late on credit card -- Can you have your bank accounts frozen and money taken from them by an issuer if you don't pay your credit card bills on time? Depends on where you live ... (See Freeze, seize bank accounts)

Free credit scores become more available to borrowers -- On Jan. 1, 2011, federal law changed, broadening access to credit scores for consumers who have been turned down for a loan or get one at less-desirable terms ... (See More free credit scores)

Sally Herigstad: Best ways to spend a $25,000 windfall -- A reader inherited $25,000 and has myriad debts to pay, but can't figure out how to divvy up the money among all her creditors ... (See Windfalls and debts)

Weekly Credit Card Rate Report: Credit card interest rates unchanged as turbulent year closes -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, as banks wrapped up a turbulent year in which interest rates reached record highs. ... (See credit card APRs)

Erica Sandberg: Her best money advice of 2010: Excesses of youth -- Letters from a pair of ethically challenged youths gave our 'Opening Credits' columnist her two favorite questions of 2010 ... (See Money advice questions)

How to change financial bad habits in 8 steps -- Making lasting changes requires time, discipline and a dive into the psyche to figure out why, exactly, you handle money the way you do ... (See Change financial bad habits)

Todd Ossenfort: Getting out of high-interest credit card debt -- A disabled wife's $14,000 high-interest card debt is crippling her husband's ability to continue to pay the minimum amount due ... (See High-rate card debt)

Sally Herigstad: Will bankruptcy filing hurt ex-spouse? -- A divorced woman is ready to file for bankruptcy in a community property state, but is worried that her ex-husband may be pursued for her unpaid debts ... (See Bankruptcy and divorce)

Gary Foreman: How to start using credit cards again after handling them badly before -- To get a good credit score and the best loans, you have to get back in there and start using credit again, even if it burned you the first time ... (See Re-establish credit)

Weekly Credit Card Rate Report:Barclays, Cap One moves send credit card interest rates higher -- Credit card interest rates rose for the first time in six weeks after Barclays and Capital One adjusted card offers. ... (See Rate report)

Jeremy M. Simon: Running up credit card debt, declaring bankruptcy a bad idea -- A reader's plan to max out his credit cards before declaring bankruptcy has some serious problems, our expert says. ... (See Bankruptcy fraud)

Discover test credit card offers draw criticism -- The test offers Discover made skirt the edges of federal regulations requiring complete disclosure of terms, say consumer advocates ... (See Discover)

Novel views of credit card debt: Plots of books by Zevin, Walter revolve around debt -- If you have problems handling your finances, you might enjoy sharing your misery with fictitious characters who get into debt and the paths they take to try and get out ... (See Credit card novels)

Sally Herigstad: Avoid sharing credit with elderly parents -- A reader, whose elderly mom can't get credit in her own name, wonders if it's OK to add mom as an authorized user on her credit card ... (See Authorized user)

QA with personal finance author Farnoosh Torabi -- Is true wealth really only in your head? Can you banish debt and live prosperously just by changing your beliefs? Cue national personal finance authority Farnoosh Torabi ... (See Farnoosh Torabi)

Weekly Credit Card Rate Report: Interest rates unchanged despite move from Chase -- A Chase interest rate tweak plus a Federal Reserve announcement still added up to zero movement in the average APR on new credit card offers this week. ... (See Rate report)

Stolen: True tales of identity theft -- Identity theft happens when you least expect it -- and often committed by the people you least suspect. Read how victims worked to restore their good names and credit. ... (See Identity theft)

Jeremy M. Simon: No quick fixes for removing late payment from credit report -- A loan applicant wants to know how he can delete a late payment from his credit report in an effort to boost his credit score. ... (See Late payment)

Sometimes bankruptcy is the ONLY way out -- If you've been out of work for a long time and sold everything you own to get by, paying your creditors and worrying about your credit rating takes a back seat ... (See Bankruptcy)

What if Santa charged Christmas? -- If he did charge Christmas, just how much would Santa spend -- and pay back with interest? And what interest rate, minimum payment or rewards might Santa expect to see on his credit card statement? ... (See Santa's credit card)

Careless-spending celebrities lose sympathy with American public -- High-spending celebrities take note: If you’re in debt because of your poor money choices, don’t look for much empathy from the rest of us. ... (See Celebrity spending)

Weekly Credit Card Rate Report: Credit card interest rates drop on Capital One changes -- Interest rates on new credit card offers continue to head lower, thanks to changes from Capital One, but that doesn't mean borrowing has become a breeze. ... (See Rate report)

Unemployed? You can get an extra free credit report -- Federal law guarantees unemployed U.S. workers the right to an extra free credit report to assist in their job search. The problem? Nobody seems to be telling out-of-work consumers ... (See Unemployed credit report)

Todd Ossenfort: When does debt get too old to collect? -- Each state has a statute of limitations on credit card debt, which prevents collectors from taking you to court after a certain period of time ... (See Statute of limitations)

Sally Herigstad: You can run from debt, but you can't hide -- A woman who left an abusive relationship also left her debts behind. Our expert asks her to face the music as she can't hide forever ... (See Leaving debt behind)

Weekly Credit Card Rate Report: Credit card interest rates unchanged after Thanksgiving holiday -- Banks, apparently still shaking off their tryptophan drowsiness, left interest rates on credit card offers unchanged this week ... (See Rate report)

9 hot credit card scams to watch out for -- Scammers love credit cards, and they have a host of ways to prey on yours. Here's what to watch for and how to avoid problems ... (See 9 credit card scams)

Procrastination is key to a credit card and financial disaster -- Putting off paying bills or failing to clean up your credit report can ruin your finances when all you need is a little attitude readjustment. Here's how ... (See Financial procrastination)

Jeremy M. Simon: Is a widow responsible for late husband's debt? It depends -- A widow living in Minnesota wonders whether her credit report should reflect her deceased husband's charged-off credit card account. ... (See Debt and death)

Todd Ossenfort: Disputing, removing joint-account holder causes headaches -- Whether you're an authorized user or a joint account holder, mistakes and confusion may reign when trying to sever a credit relationship ... (See Shared credit accounts)

Sally Herigstad: Retired, deep in debt. Is bankruptcy the answer? -- After years of borrowing, a retired couple is drowning in credit card debt. Is bankruptcy the only way out? ... (See Retired, in debt)

10 expenses to cut to help pay off credit card debt -- In hard times, take a hard look at what's coming in, what's going out and see where you can free up some cash quickly to start hacking away at your debt ... (See Cutting back)

Weekly Credit Card Rate Report: Credit card APRs fall for second straight week -- Credit card interest rates continued to fall this week, pushed lower by a business credit card. ... (See Rate report)

Credit card interest rates fall from record highs -- Credit card interest rates finally fell from record highs this week, but it's far too early for borrowers to celebrate. ... (See APRs)

Erica Sandberg: Wondering who holds your delinquent debt now? Check your credit report -- A reader wants to know which company currently holds his delinquent debt. The answer, our expert says, can be found in his credit reports ... (See Delinquent debt)

Todd Ossenfort: When debt collection makes your life miserable -- A reader reduced a regular payment to her creditor by half and wants to know how much worse things are going to get ... (See Credit card debt collectors)

Sally Herigstad: Is a wife liable for her husband's student loans? -- A concerned wife is worried about her liability for her husband's student loan debt in the event that he passes away ... (See Student loan debt and death)

Credit card interest rates hit another record high -- If it seems like credit card interest rates are higher than they've been in a long while, you're not imagining things. This week, the national average APR on new credit cards hit another record high, according to CreditCards.com's database of card offer information. ... (See APRs)

Jeremy M. Simon: 20-year-old debt should not come back to haunt you -- While credit histories typically benefit from repaying debts, in the case of 20 year old credit card account, it may be better to ignore a creditor's request for payment ... (See Old debt)

Walmart rate hike sends credit card APRs to record high -- Interest rates on new credit card offers leaped to record highs this week, following a rate hike on Walmart's Discover card ... (See Weekly rate report)

Erica Sandberg: Think twice before sharing credit card accounts with kids -- Moms and dads, beware of making your adult kid an authorized user or joint account holder on your credit card. It's noble to want to help, but their mistakes can clobber your credit. ... (See Authorized user)

Jeremy M. Simon: Patient's age determines whether unpaid medical debt owed -- A reader's dad was supposed to pay her medical bills, but then he fell on hard times. Now collectors are coming after her. Our expert says the right course of action for her depends on what her age was when she accrued the debt ... (See Medical debt)

Todd Ossenfort: Divorce doesn't dissolve joint card debt -- If you don't close joint card accounts after a divorce, then you're still responsible for paying any balances -- no matter who used the card ... (See Credit card debt, divorce)

Sally Herigstad: When nonpayment lands you in court -- A woman is being sued by her credit card company for nonpayment, and she wonders if it makes any difference if she shows up for a court date or not ... (See When card issuers sue)

Credit card APRs surge on First Premier card change -- Credit card interest rates neared record levels, after First Premier began charging the higher of two APRs to all of its new Centennial Classic cardholders. ... (See Weekly rate report)

QA with Susan L. Hirshman, author of 'Does This Make My Assets Look Fat?' -- In her book 'Does This Make My Assets Look Fat?,' Susan L. Hirshman simplifies often-complicated material into girl-talk terms that any failed dieter can digest ... (See 'Fat Assets' author Q&A)

5 scary credit card situations -- and how to deal with them -- Even if you're too old for the usual Halloween thrills and chills this year, there's still potential for plenty of spookiness ... lurking right inside your wallet ... (See Credit scares)

Jeremy M. Simon: Correcting credit report errors is crucial, but not always easy -- A reader vents about his struggles to get some errors fixed on his credit report. While fixing these mistakes can be burdensome, doing so will pay dividends in the long run ... (See Fix credit report mistakes)

Sally Herigstad: Disabled and in debt: What to do? -- A reader who is temporarily disabled and unable to work wonders how in the world she can pay on her large debts. Our expert offers some advice ... (See Disabled and in debt)

Little known credit card hardship programs offer help for problem debt -- Card issuers don't publicize them, but most have internal hardship programs for customers who have trouble paying their debts ... (See Credit card hardship programs)

Credit card interest rates rise on Chase, Cap One changes -- Interest rates on new credit card offers inched up this week, following after rate hikes from Capital One and Chase. ... (See Rate report)

Hoarders: Buried in debt -- For hoarders, the compulsion to collect, store and acquire things takes over the ability to keep track of finances. ... (See Hoarders and debt)

Erica Sandberg: The dark side of credit piggybacking -- A mom who has fallen on hard times laments that her struggles are hurting her son's credit, since he's an authorized user on her card. Our expert tells her how to clean up the mess ... (See Piggybacking)

Fed moves to close credit card application fee loophole -- Some card issuers had ducked a cap on fees on new accounts by charging a fee before the account was open. Not so fast, says the Fed ... (See Credit card fees)

Nevada's residents remain most likely to file for bankruptcy -- Nevadans, hard hit by the recession, hold the dubious distinction of being most likely to file for bankruptcy, court records show ... (See Bankruptcy)

Todd Ossenfort: Inherent risks exist when co-signing a car loan -- A reader wonders whether she should co-sign on a car loan for a student who needs a car to commute to college ... (See Co-signing risks)

How to prepare financially for time in prison -- Experts say few people serving time take steps to safeguard their finances while behind bars. Doing so helps them avoid piling on more debt from interest, fines and fees ... (See Money and prison)

Going to jail? 10 tips for reducing the financial damage -- Credit counselors, attorneys and ex-convicts offer 10 pieces of advice on safeguarding your finances if you're going to jail ... (See Prison and finances)

Sending money to jail, managing it while in prison pose challenges -- Need to send money to someone in jail or prison? Restrictions abound, rules vary and jails are their own mini-economies ... (See Prison and finances)

Gary Foreman: How to deal with debt after a divorce when ex won't pay -- Even if there's a court order, getting money out of a deadbeat ex isn't easy ... (See Divorce and debt)

Over your head in debt? 5 extreme budgeting ideas -- For many people struggling with unemployment or other financial calamity; however, just cutting back on expenses is not enough. Here are 5 extreme ways to save money. ... (See Extreme budgeting)

Credit card interest rates flat despite Chase changes -- Interest rates on new credit card offers were unchanged this week, despite several APR changes from Chase. ... (See Chase)

Paid late? 6 on-time payments can erase penalty rate -- Missed a couple of credit card bills and get socked with a penalty APR? New rules give you an opportunity to get your old rate back ... (See Penalty rate cure)

Sally Herigstad: There's no easy way to make debt disappear -- A couple facing wage garnishment wants to know where to turn to get rid of debt. Our expert warns against believing those debt elimination scams. ... (See Debt elimination)

Credit card interest rates see 2nd straight increase -- For the second straight week, it got more expensive to get a new credit card, though only slightly ... (See Rate report)

Act fast when hit by credit card fraud, even if mom and dad were to blame -- A student had her credit ruined several years ago when her parents stole her identity and ran up debts. Now the collectors are coming after her. Our expert helps steer her toward clearing her name and credit. ... (See Parental ID theft)

NFCC Awards: Carole and Don Carroll: Debt-free after 30 years -- Everyday was a complicated dance balancing $88,000 on more than a dozen credit cards. Today, they are debt free and winners of a major award for their efforts ... (See Biggest losers (of debt))

Jeremy M. Simon: When a parent's 'favor' can ruin your credit -- A reader is an authorized user on his dad's small business card. However, his credit is taking a hit as dad's business has fallen on hard times. Our expert says the reader should remove himself from that account ASAP. ... (See Authorized user)

All in the family: Parents stealing kids' identities -- It's a crime that can go undetected for years and appears to be happened more often. How do you detect, fix identity theft by a parent? ... (See Parental identity theft)

Todd Ossenfort: Student loans in default: What are your options? -- A reader has amassed huge student loans, but dropped out of college and is making only $200 a week. She wonders what her options are. ... (See Student loan default)

Sally Herigstad: Options available for buying a home with bad credit -- Just because you're credit's not great doesn't mean that you won't be able to buy a home. It's just a little harder and a little more costly ... (See Bad credit and buying a home)

How to haggle to reduce your credit card debt and rates -- You've heard the ads promising quick and easy debt reduction, but there's nothing easy or quick about them ... (See Negotiating lower debt, rates)

What happens to unpaid credit card debt if you move abroad? -- Unpaid credit card debts may be tougher to collect if you leave the country. But there are still reasons you should pay up. ... (See International credit card debt)

You went into debt for THAT?!? Good examples of bad charging -- There's a right way and a wrong way to use plastic. And then there's a really, really wrong way. Here are tales of extreme and hazardous uses of plastic ... (See Credit card abuse)

CreditCards.com weekly survey: Interest rates jump following Capital One APR hikes -- Interest rates on new credit card offers offers jumped this week, after Capital One increased rates on seven of its cards. ... (See Rate report)

15 questions that will help you find the right credit counselor -- Knowing what to ask will help you be prepared before, during and after your initial credit counseling session ... (See Credit counseling)

4 simple ways to cope with debt-related stress -- If you’re one of the millions of Americans in considerable debt, it isn’t just your pocketbook that could be affected, but your health, too. Here are four ways to help you cope ... (See Debt-related stress)

Gary Foreman: How to re-establish responsible credit card use after debt problems -- After cleaning up past debt mess, the first question to ask is whether you've learned your credit card lesson and can handle credit responsibly now ... (See Re-establishing credit)

The good, bad and the ugly of credit card offers -- Credit card offers are back from the dead, so if you've got a high credit score, you're in demand and are likely to have a mailbox stuffed full of offers. If you've got average or bad credit, however, the story's likely quite different. ... (See Credit card offers)

CreditCards.com weekly survey: Interest rates fall after Sony Card returns -- Credit card interest rates fall this week after the Sony Card made its return ... (See Rate report)

On a fixed income with debt collectors calling -- A reader's parents are being pursued by debt collectors wonders how they can pay when they have no assets and are living on fixed incomes ... (See Debt collection)

QA with Lynnette Khalfani-Cox -- Like the plumber with leaky faucets at home, money coach and personal finance author Khalfani-Cox had racked up more than $100,000 in debt. ... (See Lynnette Khalfani-Cox)

9 credit score myths do more harm than good -- In today’s economy, a good credit score is more valuable than ever, but not all advice is good advice. These nine credit score myths that can do more harm than good ... (See Credit score myths)

CreditCards.com weekly survey: Interest rates remain unchanged for second-straight week -- Credit card interest rates held steady this week at their lowest levels since mid-May ... (See Rate report)

Jeremy M. Simon: Cardholders must fight to correct credit report errors -- Consumers need to take advantage of consumer protection law by disputing credit reporting errors with both the bank and credit bureau. ... (See Credit report errors)

Credit card interest rates unchanged despite NFL card's return -- Interest rates on new credit card offers were unchanged, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, following the return of the NFL Extra Points Rewards credit card. ... (See Rate report)

Capital One's moves send credit card interest rates falling -- Interest rates on new credit card offers fell this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, after Capital One introduced lower rates on several of its cards. ... (See Rate report)

You're eligible for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, but should you file? -- A reader who has fallen on hard times wonders if Chapter 7 bankruptcy is right for her. Her lawyer says yes. Our expert says she's not so sure. ... (See Chapter 7 bankruptcy)

Todd Ossenfort: 7 ways to ensure a financially successful marriage -- Tying the knot? Know that finances are one of the top five reasons for divorce. Here's how to keep your money and marriage together ... (See Money and marriage)

Ex-offenders face big debt challenges after prison -- Most ex-offenders, once they are free, face overbearing debt obligations and job barriers, often forcing them to return to a life of crime ... (See Out of jail, in debt)

How to transform a good credit score to great -- Each day this week, our columnists will answer one of our readers' most frequently asked questions. Today, we focus on how to boost your credit score. ... (See Great credit scores)

Interest rates stay steady, but 59.9 percent APR reappears on First Premier card -- The national average interest rate on new credit card offers was unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, even as one issuer reintroduced an extremely high rate. ... (See Rate report)

Credit Card FAQ: Erica Sandberg: What sort of credit card debt help is best for you? -- Each day this week, our columnists will answer one of our readers' most frequently asked questions. Today, we focus on getting debt help. ... (See Debt help choices)

Divorce and debt: Advice on dividing up, paying off debt -- Divorce is stressful enough. When jointly held debt is involved, things get a lot more complicated. Check out the advice in these stories ... (See Divorce and debt)

Credit Card FAQ: Todd Ossenfort: How do you get debt collectors off your back? -- Each day this week, our columnists will answer one of our readers' most frequently asked questions. Our series begins with a focus on debt collectors ... (See Debt collectors)

How credit card debt delays retirement dreams -- The dream of retirement is being clouded -- and delayed -- as more workers approach the golden years saddled with credit card debt ... (See Card debt and retirement)

Credit CARD Act begins final phase -- Gift card protections, requirements for reasonable fees and mandatory account reviews when interest rates are hiked are among the new consumer protections in Phase III of the Credit CARD Act of 2009. ... (See Credit CARD Act of 2009)

Sally Herigstad: Best to clean up debt in your home country -- When moving to Canada, it's in your best interest to make sure all your debts are paid back home. Here's why ... (See Moving to Canada)

5 steps to prioritize debt payments when cash is tight -- Owe numerous creditors but don't have enough money to send each a complete payment right away? Prioritize. Here's how ... (See Debt repayment)

FTC proposes changes to credit reporting summary of rights documents -- When you get a copy of your credit report, it comes with a document that lists your rights. Now, the Federal Trade Commission is working to make those disclosures much easier to read. ... (See Disclosure)

Wells Fargo interest rate increase sends credit card APRs higher -- Interest rates on new credit card offers rose slightly this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, after Wells Fargo increased the rate on a card ... (See Rate report)

4 steps to settling privately funded student loans -- A reader has defaulted on private education loans and wonders what his options are. Our expert offers some key steps he can take to ease his burden ... (See Student loans)

Help for bad credit -- Got bad credit? Sometimes it can't be avoided. Sometimes it can. Either way, if your credit score's in the dumps, that doesn't mean you don't have options ... (See Help for bad credit)

Help for bad credit: Buying a car -- If your credit score stinks, don't just throw in the towel and buy a bus pass. Learn more about how to buy a car with bad credit with these stories.. ... (See Help for bad credit: Buying a car)

Help for bad credit: Buying or renting a home -- Bad credit history? Don't move into your mom's basement just yet! The economy is forcing landlords and homeowners to be more flexible. ... (See Help for bad credit: Buying or renting a home)

Help for bad credit: Dealing emotionally -- If a bad credit score keeps you up at night, wrecks your relationships or burns your confidence, you need to take steps to face, accept and change those three unsightly digits -- without losing your cool. ... (See Help for bad credit: Dealing emotionally)

Help for bad credit: Getting a cell phone -- Many cell phone plans exist that don't require a contract, big deposit or credit check, and many of those plans -- including pay-as-you-go plans -- may even save you money. ... (See Help for bad credit: Getting a cell phone)

Help for bad credit: Getting a credit card -- You need a credit card to improve your credit score, but you need a good credit score to open a credit card account. If you're stuck in this frustrating cycle, don’t give up ... (See Help for bad credit: Getting a credit card)

Help for bad credit: Improving your credit score -- Paying your bills in full and on time isn't the only way to improve your credit score. Find out some creative ways to help give your score a lift ... (See Help for bad credit: Improving your credit score)

Help for bad credit: Jobs -- It's important to know the costs of negative marks on your credit history and how you should handle a potential employer who requests to see your credit report. ... (See Help for bad credit: Jobs)

Help for bad credit: Relationships, marriage and divorce -- Just as bad credit can fragment your relationships, some relationships -- especially those in which joint accounts or co-signed loans are involved -- can rip apart your credit score. ... (See Help for bad credit: Relationships, marriage and divorce)

Help for bad credit: Young adults -- Young people make lots of mistakes. Unfortunately, credit mistakes don't fade into obscurity after college graduation in the way that embarrassing party stories do ... (See Help for bad credit: Young adults)

Credit card lending standards loosen for 1st time in 3 years -- It got easier to get a credit card in the second quarter of 2010, according to data released by the Federal Reserve on Monday ... (See Survey)

Divorce and credit card debt don't mix -- While a decree can assign payment responsibility for joint credit card debt, if your ex doesn't pay as agreed, your credit is at risk ... (See Card debt and divorce)

10 things NOT to do when you apply for a credit card -- When applying for a credit card, doing any of these 10 things could hurt your chances of getting approved ... (See Credit don'ts)

Bad credit can hinder job search, but doesn't always -- A reader is concerned that her poor credit -- which went south during her current bout of unemployment -- is wrecking her chances of getting her next job. ... (See Credit score)

Capital One APR decrease sends credit card interest rates to 3rd drop in 4 weeks -- Interest rates on new credit card offers fell for the third time in four weeks, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, after Capital One lowered the rate on a card product. ... (See Rates)

8 reasons to ignore your credit score and rating -- You know how important having and maintaining a great credit score is, but there are times when concentrating on something else makes more sense ... (See Ignore your credit score)

80 percent of spouses lie about spending -- Secret spenders have hidden credit cards, bank accounts and debts ... (See Secrets)

Sally Herigstad: Do you marry someone who's deep in debt? -- A woman wonders if she'll ruin her credit by marrying a man who has $150,000 in debt. Our expert says no, but be careful to keep romance and finances separate. ... (See Debt and marriage)

Interest rates fall after Walmart card makes online return -- Interest rates on new credit card offers fall after G.E. Money brings back its Walmart Discover card. ... (See Rates)

Don't fall for the 'Obama government debt bailout program' scam -- Rip-off alert: There's no government program to relieve you of credit card debt, despite the hordes of Internet scammers who say there is ... (See Debt bailout)

Todd Ossenfort: Can a credit mistake caused by co-signing keep me from renting a home -- A reader co-signed a loan, which was defaulted upon. Now she needs to rent a home. Are her options as bleak as she thinks? ... (See Bad credit and renting)

Sally Herigstad: Don't pay a collector's dubious old debt without proof -- If a collector calls wanting payment on a very old debt that you don't remember, odds are that you are being scammed ... (See Dubious debt)

Nevada still king, Georgia jumps Tennessee in bankruptcies per capita -- Nevada is still king, and Georgia jumps Tennessee in bankruptcies per capita. Indiana, Colorado and Utah all jump up in the rankings, while Tennessee and Michigan see small decreases. ... (See Bankruptcy)

FTC bans upfront fees for debt settlement firms -- Those who owe on credit cards, other loans were often soaked, federal agency says in banning upfront fees for debt settlement ... (See Debt settlement fees)

Interest rates rise after Chase adjusts card offer -- Credit card interest rates increased following Chase's adjustment of a card offer. ... (See Rate report)

3 steps to take after destroying mom or dad's credit -- A son who did major damage to his father's credit wants to make things right. Our expert gives advice on how to get his credit -- and his relationship with his dad -- back on track. ... (See Repairing credit)

Bank of America stops disclosing default APRs -- Despite regulations aimed at making credit card agreements more consumer friendly, new cardholders carrying plastic from the No. 2 U.S. bank won't know the exact cost of making a borrowing mistake until it's too late. ... (See Penalty rates)

Pros and cons of paying off old debt -- Yes, paying it off will look good to lenders, but you may not want to restart the clock on debt that has passed the statute of limitations ... (See Paying off old debt)

Consumer financial protections at least a year away -- Long ramp up time for new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau means consumers will have to wait for credit card protections ... (See Consumer financial protection)

10 wordiest credit card agreements -- Of all the credit card contracts posted online in a new Federal Reserve database, these droned on the longest, according to a CreditCarsds.com analysis ... (See Credit card agreements)

10 most unreadable credit card contracts -- Of all the credit card contracts posted online in a new Federal Reserve database, these were the 10 most unreadable, according to a CreditCards.com analysis ... (See Unreadable card contracts)

10 most readable credit card agreements -- Of all the credit card contracts posted online in a new Federal Reserve database, these were the 10 most readable, according to a CreditCards.com analysis ... (See Credit card agreements)

Credit card Interest rates fall for first time since May -- Credit card interest rates fell last week for the first time in more than two months, according to CreditCards.com's Weekly Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

How to buy a house if you have bad credit -- Though a low credit score will decrease your homebuying options, it may not kill them entirely. Here's how to improve your chances of getting a loan. ... (See Bad credit? How to buy a house)

Authorized user can't be legally responsible for tax payment -- Though it may be a noble idea, an authorized cardholder who got into debt trouble can't take on the tax burden for the friend whose credit he damaged. ... (See 1099-C)

Debt in collections: Do you settle or pay in full? -- Once your debt goes into collections, you can choose to pay the full amount or negotiate a lower amount. Which choice looks better on your credit report? ... (See Debt collection)

FTC: Fix 'broken' debt collection system -- The federal agency says the common ways consumers confront debt collection -- arbitration and litigation -- just don't work ... (See FTC: Debt collection 'broken')

Credit card interest rates hold steady for 2nd straight week -- Interest rates on new credit card offers were unchanged for the second straight week, as banks left their card products alone. ... (See Rate report)

How to get a credit card if you have bad credit -- A tough economy has left many with bruised credit and lenders reluctant to issue loans. But you can still get a decent card. Here's how ... (See Bad credit credit cards)

Losing your job doesn't mean you have to file for bankruptcy -- A reader just lost her job and has $60,000 in credit card and student loan debt. She's considering going bankrupt, but our expert says that's not going to solve her problems ... (See Lost job and bankruptcy)

QA with 'Hot (Broke) Messes' author Nancy Trejos -- Author and Washington Post personal finance columnist Nancy Trejos shares how deep she was in debt and how she managed to climb out ... (See 'Hot (Broke) Messes')

Credit card interest rates end five-week run of increases -- The streak is over. Last week, for the first time in more than the month, the national average interest rate on a new credit card offer did not increase, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Consumers paying more credit card bills on time -- Not since 2002 have Americans been so good about paying their credit card bills on time, according to recent loan delinquency numbers from the ABA. ... (See Credit card delinquencies)

How to get a cell phone if you have bad credit -- Even if you have bad credit, you don't have to pay more for cell phone service if you know all of your options. ... (See Cell phones and bad credit)

Financial reform opens access to free credit scores -- Financial reform rules now require lenders that turn you down or give you a higher rate to provide you access to a free credit score ... (See Free credit scores)

Financial role reversal: Adult children increasingly co-sign for parents' loans -- In a case of financial role reversal, more parents are turning to their children for loans due to the parents' rising debts, falling retirement funds ... (See Co-signing for parents)

Interest rates advance for fifth consecutive week -- Credit card APRs increased for the fifth straight week, the longest increase in nearly three years. ... (See Rate report)

Is bankruptcy right for you? Our 7-point checklist will tell you -- A reader is fed up and is considering bankruptcy, but she doesn't know if it's wise for her. Our expert offers a 7-point checklist to help her make the right choice. ... (See Bankruptcy checklist)

QA: Avis Cardella writes on overcoming shopping addiction -- 'Memoirs of a Shopping Addict' author Avis Cardella describes how credit counseling helped her overcome 'Sex & the City' lifestyle ... (See Memoirs of a shopping addict)

Is bad credit bad for small business startups? -- Starting a business with bad credit won't be easy, but it's not impossible. Here are some ways to find funding without a top-notch credit score. ... (See Bad credit and startups)

Credit card interest rates rise for fourth straight week -- Interest rates on new credit card offers tiptoed higher this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, marking the fourth consecutive weekly increase. ... (See Rate report)

3 reasons not to co-sign for college students' credit cards -- The Credit CARD Act makes it harder for students under 21 to get credit cards. Thus, a 21-year-old student wants to charge his classmates to have him co-sign on a credit card. Our expert explains why this is a really bad idea ... (See Co-signing student)

Credit lessons from the soap operas: One Life to Live -- Part I: You only have 'One Life to Live,' so don't share money with an evil twin - you know, the one who's always spending your money ... (See Credit lessons from soap operas: 'One Life to Live')

Credit lessons from the soap operas: Days of Our Lives rerun -- Part IV: The Days of Our Lives shouldn't be filled with money troubles ... (See Credit lessons from the soap operas: Days of Our Lives rerun)

Credit lessons from the soap operas: General Hospital -- Part V: If you're financially honest with your mate, no need for a 'General Hospital' style paternity test; you'll always know who's the real parent of a debt ... (See Credit lessons from soap operas: 'General Hospital')

Ignoring delinquent debt can lead to wage garnishment -- The longer your debt goes unpaid, the more likely you'll be forced to pay through a court order to garnish your wages. ... (See Wage garnishment)

Dads can be better financial role models -- While many of us learn how to manage our finances from our parents, they're not always the best role models, according to a new survey. ... (See NFCC survey)

Capital One move pushes APRs higher for 3rd straight week -- Another week brought with it another interest rate move by Capital One, sending credit card APRs still higher. ... (See Cap One)

QA with 'Paying With Plastic' author David Evans -- In this book author Q&A, 'Paying With Plastic' author David Evans argues we're going through two payment revolutions: paper to plastic, then plastic to "virtual" payments ... (See 'Paying with Plastic' by David Evans)

5 simple steps to a faster debt payoff -- A reader's credit card statement showed him what it would cost to pay off his debts in three years. He wants to do it sooner. Our expert tells him how ... (See Debt payoff)

Does an authorized user's bad credit hurt the account's owner? -- Co-mingling credit with friends or family via co-signing or authorized users is best to be avoided at all costs. ... (See Authorized users and credit scores)

Get angry at your overdue debt, not your lender -- You've fallen behind on your payments and you're angry at the carmaker who's asking for the payment you agreed to make? Get real ... (See Get angry at debt)

Cap One's moves push credit card interest rates higher -- Interest rates on new credit card offers surged higher this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, following card adjustments by Capital One. ... (See Rates)

Elderly father's Social Security income likely safe from garnishment -- A reader worries that her elderly father's Social Security income will be garnished to pay back a credit line from the bank. Our expert says she probably doesn't have to worry ... (See Social Security and garnishment)

Capital One's rate hikes send credit card interest rates higher -- Interest rates on new credit card offers rose this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, spurred by rate increases from Capital One. ... (See Rate report)

Even barely late payments can impact your credit score -- If you're late with a payment -- but fewer than 30 days late -- does your credit score take a hit? The answer's not so simple. ... (See Late payments and credit scores)

Don't fall prey to aggressive debt collection tactics -- Debt collectors know what buttons to push, so if you've never dealt with them before, you may agree to a repayment plan that you can't afford ... (See Debt collection tactics)

Fed: Credit companies admit profiling credit card users -- What you buy and where you buy it can sometimes be held against you by your credit card issuer, a Federal Reserve report to Congress Friday reveals ... (See Credit card profiling)

Credit card interest rates remain unchanged -- Interest rates on new credit card offers were unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, after banks largely refrained from adjusting their card offers. ... (See Rate report)

8 steps toward recovering from youthful money mistakes -- A reader wants to pay off her card debts before going back to school. Our expert lays out an eight-step plan to help her do just that ... (See Pay off debt)

GAO report shows non-English speakers have it rougher financially -- A federal report chronicles how limited English proficiency also limits people's ability to get by in the complex financial world ... (See Financial literacy and English)

Be careful not to start the clock on time-barred debt -- A reader whose debt has run past the statute of limitations in her state wonders if she should still pay what she can. ... (See Old debt)

What to expect when buying a car with bad credit -- The last sound you want to hear when you're rebuilding your credit is the clank of a dying car. What are your options? ... (See Bad credit car buying)

Credit card interest rates end record run of declines -- Interest rates on new credit card offers rose this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, ending a record string of declines. ... (See Rate report)

Without co-signer, minor's debt likely off-limits to collectors -- A reader could no longer make payments on a card he got when he was a minor and is now dealing with collections and even a possible wage garnishment. But given his age when he signed, is the debt his responsibility? ... (See Minors and credit)

The Credit CARD of 2009 turns 1: A year-long look at the landmark legislation -- What a difference a year makes. One year ago this week, President Obama signed historic legislation revamping how Americans acquire, use and pay for credit cards. Use this time line to view key developments affecting credit card users and their accounts. ... (See CARD Act)

Credit scoring, reporting Q and A with Experian, part 1 -- The first in a six-part series replaying a credit scoring and reporting question and answer session CreditCards.com held with Experian. ... (See Credit)

Credit scoring, reporting Q and A with Experian, part 2 -- The second in a six-part series replaying a credit scoring and reporting question and answer session CreditCards.com held with Experian. ... (See Credit reporting)

Credit scoring, reporting Q and A with Experian, part 3 -- The third in a six-part series replaying a credit scoring and reporting question and answer session CreditCards.com held with Experian. ... (See Credit reporting)

Credit scoring, reporting Q and A with Experian, part 4 -- The fourth in a six-part series replaying a credit scoring and reporting question and answer session CreditCards.com held with Experian. ... (See Credit reporting)

Credit scoring, reporting Q and A with Experian, part 5 -- The fifth in a six-part series replaying a credit scoring and reporting question and answer session CreditCards.com held with Experian. ... (See Credit reporting)

Credit scoring, reporting Q and A with Experian, part 6 -- The last in a six-part series replaying a credit scoring and reporting question and answer session CreditCards.com held with Experian. ... (See Credit reporting)

Congratulations, graduate! Now, do you have a post-graduation debt plan? -- Graduating from college this spring? You're probably taking more with you than your diplomas and a futon. The class of 2010 has debt, and a lot of it ... (See Graduate from student debt)

Credit card interest rates' slide continues -- Interest rates on new credit card offers declined for a record fifth straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, after Citi lowered rates on a card product. ... (See Interest rates)

Look to credit reports to understand loan denials -- A reader wondering why he was rejected for a credit card loan should turn to his credit report to understand why the lender made the move ... (See Credit reports)

How to rent a home if you have bad credit: In recession, landlords become flexible -- Your landlord might not care about your bad credit as much as you think. With the recession and high vacancy rates, these steps can help you persuade the manager to overlook your score and let you rent ... (See Renting with bad credit)

Credit card interest rates fall for record 4th straight week -- Card rates continue to be volatile, with cards entering and exiting the market as the industry -- faced with the recession and new regulations -- rapidly changes ... (See Rate report)

5 steps to tackling debt while unemployed -- An unemployed reader is deep in debt and desperate. Our expert offers five tips for getting herself back on track ... (See Paying off debt)

Credit card lending standards keep tightening, Fed report says -- It became tougher to get a credit card in early 2010, according to the latest data from the Federal Reserve, even as banks were more willing to offer other types of loans. ... (See Lending)

Comparing desperate options: bankruptcy vs. debt negotiation -- With savings spent, deep in debt and jobless, a reader's choices are all unpleasant. Go in with eyes open ... (See Desperate money choices)

Bankruptcy protects against wage garnishment -- A reader who filed bankruptcy is contacted by an old creditor who threatens wage garnishment. Does she have to pay the debt or not? ... (See Wage garnishment)

Target's moves send credit card interest rates to 3rd straight decline -- Credit card interest rates fell again, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, spurred by Target's recent move to eliminate its Visa credit card. ... (See Rate report)

States stepping up to limit pre-employment credit checks -- If you're unemployed and suffering from bad credit, a growing number of states' lawmakers want to remove one barrier between you and a new job: a credit check ... (See Credit checks)

Authorized users aren't liable for card debt -- Collectors trying to collect outstanding card debt from an authorized user are barking up the wrong tree. Here's what to do. ... (See Authorized user)

There's no easy fix when you're maxed out on credit -- If you're young and already maxed out on credit, it's time to buckle down, pay it off and clear the path for a less stressful future ... (See Maxed out credit cards)

Citi's moves send interest rates down for 2nd straight week -- Interest rates on new credit card offers fell for the second straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, amid signs the consumer lending environment may be improving. ... (See Rate report)

Which of the 4 types of debt-help companies is right for you? -- Deep in debt but not ready for bankruptcy? Consider these types of companies, but beware: credit help comes in many forms, and not all of them are good for you ... (See Debt help)

How to get a job when you have bad credit -- A blemished credit report can hurt your job chances. Learn which financial mistakes are most costly. ... (See Bad credit)

Interest rates fall as issuers modify credit card offers -- Interest rates on new credit card offers fell this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, after issuers tweaked the rates on several card products. ... (See Rate report)

Minors likely bear moral -- not legal -- responsibility for fraudulent debts -- Legally, minors likely bear no responsibility to repay credit card debts -- even if built up fraudulently. Morally? That's an entirely different matter. ... (See Minors and credit)

Bankruptcies resume climbing, aided by tax refunds -- Bankruptcy filings rose 17 percent over a year ago; once-available cushions of credit and home equity have vanished ... (See Bankruptcies rising)

Credit score suffers from being caught in 'balance chasing' loop -- "Balance chasing" by banks can leave borrowers with lower credit limits and credit scores ... (See Credit score)

New rules could provide millions with free credit scores -- Rules announced by the Federal Reserve and FTC mean that, starting in 2011, millions of U.S. borrowers could get free copies of their credit scores. ... (See Credit scores)

Interest rates rise as credit card issuers tweak offers -- The industry continues to writhe and adjust as card issuers learn to cope with the Great Recession and new regulation ... (See Rate report)

Collectors can try, but can't legally collect a minor's debts -- Handle with care demands for payment on old, forgotten amounts, and don't pay what you don't owe out of fear or ignorance ... (See Old debt)

Meet those who seek a perfect credit score -- and learn how they achieved FICO perfection -- We introduce you to credit score superstars -- and learn why and how they keep those precious three digits so high ... (See Credit score)

How a widow should handle collection calls on late husband's 'debt' -- More than four years after her husband died, a widow begins receiving collection calls on debt that may be the result of identity theft ... (See Collection calls)

Avoiding new rules, 'free' credit report sites switch to offering 'free' scores -- On the eve of new rules sharply restricting offers of 'free' credit reports, companies switch to offering 'free' credit scores ... (See Free credit report)

Bad credit card issuer's moves send interest rates lower -- Interest rates on new credit card offers fell this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, after subprime issuer Credit One tweaked some of its card offers ... (See Rate report)

High balance on just one card can hurt credit score -- Check your credit score and keep all your cards' balances low or you could upset your attempt to refinance a home ... (See Balance hurts refi odds)

Beware of phone calls offering credit card relief -- New telephone scams are targeting consumers with promises of lowering credit card interest rates, fixing damaged credit reports. ... (See Beware)

What types of income are protected from wage garnishment? -- Typically, retirement and disability income are exempt from being tapped for the repayment of unpaid debt. ... (See Protected.)

QA with Manisha Thakor, author of personal finance book 'Get Financially Naked' -- 'Get Financially Naked' with your honey -- or face big money woes, book author says. ... (See Naked)

Capital One's business card moves send interest rates higher -- Interest rates on new credit card offers rose this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, spurred by changes in Capital One's business card offerings. ... (See Rate report)

Want to boost your credit? Co-signing with parent still an option -- Young people looking for a credit boost can still co-sign with their parents, even with the passage of the Credit CARD Act. In fact, if the young adult doesn't have his own source of income, it might be his only choice. ... (See Credit)

Canceling a card can hurt your credit score -- Forced to choose between paying a new fee on your credit card or closing the account? Consider the impact on your credit score. ... (See Canceling a card)

What to ask before getting a lawsuit settlement loan -- You may have seen the ads on TV -- "Cash for injury and employment cases!" These lawsuit loans should be a choice of last resort. But if you're considering one, asking yourself these key questions first can help keep your costs down. ... (See Cash)

Credit card agreement from your issuer -- Federal law requires credit card issuers to post their agreements; find yours from this list. ... (See Agreements)

Paying bills by money order gets expensive -- Fear of being turned down by a bank for a checking account can be unfounded. There are ways to find out if you're eligible to have an account. ... (See Bills)

Credit card interest rates fall after Wells Fargo cuts APRs -- In what it called a "competitive pricing" move, Wells Fargo drove down the average rates on new credit cards this week by lowering the rates on four of its credit cards. ... (See Rate report)

Putting off dealing with debt problems will only make them worse -- Our expert tells a struggling college student to stop avoiding her debt problems or they will only get much worse. ... (See Debt)

Conservatorships: Stepping in for those who can't help themselves -- Watching a family member lose his grip on his finances can be maddening. However, in some cases you can take control by going to court to set up a conservatorship, a legal relationship that makes you the custodian of another adult's finances. ... (See Conservatorship)

Piggybacking's just one step en route to a better credit score -- Borrowers who want to boost their credit scores need to examine their own credit reports first before becoming authorized cardholders on other accounts. ... (See Piggyback)

Credit card interest rates jump, approach record highs -- Credit card interest rates reached their second-highest level on record after U.S. Bank raised rates on several of its cards. ... (See Rate report)

From credit card disaster to card master: 7 tips from the debt reformed -- Repaying big card balances is hard enough, but remaining debt-free is even more so. Learn how seven credit card 'disasters' turned into credit card masters. ... (See Reformed)

3 easy steps to simplify your financial life -- Sick of living in financial chaos? Get it all under control without outside help. Here are three steps to get you on your way. ... (See Chaos)

Forgiven debt resurfaces at tax time -- The IRS is one creditor you cannot ignore. If you receive a 1099-C in the mail for forgiven debt, you have to declare it as income. ... (See IRS)

Fed proposes rules to limit credit card fees -- Credit card fees would have to be 'reasonable' and 'proportional' to the offense under new rules proposed by the Federal Reserve. ... (See Fees)

Interest rates fall as 59.9% APR credit card goes away -- Interest rates pulled back from record levels this week, although cardholders may not have much reason to cheer. ... (See Rate report)

White House online town hall credit card reform transcript -- This transcript chronicles the conversation between administration officials and CreditCards.com readers on Feb. 22, 2010, the day a federal credit card reform law took effect. ... (See White House credit card town hall)

3 ways to rebuild your credit after wage garnishment -- Consistent, timely student loan payments made via wage garnishment don't reflect positively on a credit report. But there are a few steps you can take to improve your standing. ... (See Rebuild)

Sharing a roof with a parent doesn't mean sharing their bankruptcy -- Adult children who share an address with a parent don't also need to share the credit score damage when that parent files for bankruptcy. ... (See Bankruptcy)

CARD Act prevents sudden rate hikes, not annual fees -- As issuers struggle to recoup lost fee revenue, many are instituting annual fees on their credit cards. The good news is that your APR is protected. ... (See Fees)

Consumers gain right to dispute credit report errors directly with merchants -- As of the summer of 2010, if a merchant puts inaccurate information on your credit report, you can force them to investigate the problem. But you have to do it right ... (See Fix credit report errors)

Consumer credit complaints see huge jump, FTC says -- Identity theft again topped the list of consumer complaints made to the Federal Trade Commission in 2009, but the number of Americans ticked off about their credit showed the sharpest increase. ... (See FTC)

Interest rates surge higher as credit card reform arrives -- Banks jacked interest rates to record levels this week, getting in their final licks against consumers ahead of the new credit card regulations. ... (See Rate report)

How to clear a minor of responsibility for card debt in 5 steps -- A worried grandparent wants to know how she can make sure that her grandson isn't held liable for debt on a credit card that his mother got in his name. ... (See Fraud)

Video: White House town hall on credit card reform -- Austan Goolsbee of the President's Council of Economic Advisers answered questions on Feb. 22 about credit card reform and what it means to you. The questions were both submitted live and in advance through CreditCards.com. ... (See Town hall)

How social networking can help credit card debtors -- While social networking groups are virtual, the results from participating in online debt relief support groups are real. ... (See Relief)

You can be sued for nonpayment of credit card debt -- The road of not paying your credit card accounts is not a pretty one. Expect late fees, higher APRs and, eventually, collections. ... (See Debt)

Video: New card law changes relationship between colleges, issuers -- The Credit CARD Act changes the once-secret agreements between card issuers and colleges by requiring schools to report any deals they make with card companies to the Federal Reserve Board. ... (See Campus)

Cost of bad-credit credit cards rising due to reform law -- The passage of federal credit card reform means big changes for those with bad credit. Subprime credit will be available, but expensive and harder to find. ... (See Subprime)

Tips for rebuilding your credit after divorce -- A disabled domestic violence survivor and divorcee not only needs to rebuild her life, but also her credit. ... (See Rebuild)

Interest rates edge lower just ahead of CARD Act implementation -- With the Credit CARD Act's implementation just days away, experts say competition for prime borrowers may help keep rates steady. ... (See Rate report)

Want to avoid a rate hike? Don't carry a balance -- The best way to deal with a looming credit card interest rate hike is to not carry a balance on your credit card. ... (See APR)

Video: Big changes coming to bad-credit credit cards -- The new credit card law -- much of which takes effect on Feb. 22 -- has provisions that protect people with bad credit. Specifically, the law limits fees on subprime credit cards. What other changes will the law bring for those with poor credit? ... (See Bad credit)

White House to answer consumer questions about Credit CARD Act -- The White House will answer Americans' questions about the new credit card reform law during a live online town hall at 2 p.m. EST Feb. 22. ... (See White House credit card town hall)

1 in 10 Americans has given up or had taken away credit cards in past 8 months -- A CreditCards.com poll shows that consumers' newfound frugality and card issuers' punitive actions have caused a mass migration away from credit cards. ... (See Give up)

Video: 5 smart moves to make before Feb. 22 -- Sweeping new credit card laws arrive on Feb. 22, 2010. But before that day, you might want to make one of these smart credit moves. ... (See Moves)

When even the minimum payment on your credit card is too much -- When making your credit card's minimum payment becomes impossible, you have options. One of those options does NOT include paying less than the minimum. ... (See Too much)

5 dumbest money moves that love makes you do -- They can seem oh-so-right at the time, but these five financial blunders linger long after your other is no longer significant. ... (See Oops)

Major subprime marketer, CompuCredit, leaves credit card marketing business -- Subprime lender CompuCredit says it no longer markets its 'fee-harvesting' cards, which drew criticism from consumers, fines from regulators and soon will be outlawed. ... (See Fees)

Interest rates mostly steady as credit card reform nears -- Interest rates on new credit card offers were little changed this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, as the countdown continued toward implementation of major credit card industry reforms. ... (See Rate report)

Young adults slow to spot ID theft, survey shows -- The latest identity theft poll from Javelin Strategy & Research shows that despite their Web savvy, so-called millenials -- young adults between 18 and 24 -- take longer than other age groups to identity and resolves instances of ID fraud. ... (See Fraud)

3 common credit mistakes -- and how to fix them -- One credit mistake can easily lead to another and to another, as one reader found out the hard way. Her mistakes were common -- and easily avoidable. ... (See Mistakes)

Poll: On eve of credit card reform, few understand what new law holds -- Significant numbers of consumers are unaware of the most important elements of the new package of credit card rules. Worse, many have erroneous assumptions about what the new rules do address. ... (See Credit CARD Act of 2009)

7 ways to protect against being a victim of credit card revenge -- Just suffered a break-up from a revenge-seeking ex? Here's how to make sure your credit is safe. ... (See Revenge)

Credit card revenge spending: When love goes wrong, the hurt go shopping -- Getting burned by the one you love can inspire the desire to get back by charging up credit accounts. The ultimate cost, however, may be borne by you. ... (See Burned)

Consider these options before co-signing for a card -- Considering co-signing for your son or daughter's credit card? Know that if you do, you'll bear as much legal responsibility for paying that debt off as he or she will. ... (See Co-signing)

Negotiating down card debt and your credit score -- You can ask a card company not to report your debt settlement to the credit bureaus, but there's no guarantee that it will comply. ... (See Score)

Credit card interest rates soar; bad-credit borrowers hit hardest -- If you've got bad credit, brace yourself: The average interest rate for a new subprime credit card just shot sky high ... (See Rate Report)

Are you liable for late spouse's card debt? -- A widow being pursued by debt collectors wants to know if she is legally responsible for her late husband's credit card debts. The answer's not so simple. ... (See Liable)

Piggybacking is still an option, but proceed with caution -- If you're looking to help boost a FICO score, piggybacking as an authorized user on a spouse's credit card account remains an option. But if you're looking to pay to do it, you might be out of luck. ... (See Piggybacking)

Is reaffirming credit card debt during bankruptcy wise? -- When filing for bankruptcy, a reader want to reaffirm credit card debt, with the hope of still being able to use the card. Chances are slim the card will still be usable. ... (See Reaffirm)

6 common money mistakes women make -- After more than two years writing for CreditCards.com, "To Her Credit" columnist Sally Herigstad recaps the most frequent financial errors women make ... (See Mistakes)

Survey: Debt collection calls growing more frequent, aggressive -- A new survey reveals that debt collection calls have become more aggressive, and collectors are abusing laws that protect debtors. ... (See Collectors)

Affluent are more often victims of ID theft, report shows -- Wealthy consumers who enjoy leisure activities such as tennis, skiing and international vacations are top targets for identity thieves, according to a new report. ... (See Theft)

Credit card penalty rates can top 30 percent; how to avoid them -- Think it costs a lot to use your credit card now? Make a late payment and your interest rate could jump to more than 30 percent. ... (See Rates)

Get help ASAP when debt leads to suicidal thoughts -- Debt, no matter how high, is never a reason to end one's life. If credit card debt has spawned thoughts of suicide, get help from friends, family or professionals. ... (See Help)

Your options when paying the minimum isn't possible -- When living from paycheck to paycheck, any disruption in income can have immediate effects on your financial situation, including not being able to pay the minimum on your cards. ... (See Help)

Looking to disappear? Deleting your credit history is far from easy -- Erasing your existing credit report is nearly impossible, although you can try to delete parts of your borrowing history. ... (See Erase)

Credit card reform arrives in the form of the Credit CARD Act -- The most sweeping credit card changes ever are being imposed on credit card issuers, which in the course of complying, are making dramatic changes in consumers' credit card accounts -- not all of them welcome ... (See Credit card reform law goes in effect)

Credit CARD Act of 2009 article archives -- All the CreditCards.com coverage of the credit card reform law ... (See CARD Act)

5 tactics of bad debt collectors -- and what you can do about them -- The recession has put debt collectors under added pressure, too. Some are reacting by cutting legal corners. ... (See 5 collection tactics)

After medical bills lead to wage garnishment, consider bankruptcy -- When a wage garnishment cuts your living expenses substantially, prioritize what's left, buy time and consider bankruptcy. ... (See Wage)

Resist racking up debt to get back at cheating spouse -- You think hitting where it hurts -- his wallet -- will satisfy your hurt? Don't go there as you may end up paying dearly for your revenge. ... (See Revenge)

Bulk up your thin credit in 4 easy steps -- When getting started with credit, the key is to start small, then build up gradually over time. These four easy steps can get you on your way. ... (See Thin credit)

Fed issues final Credit CARD Act rules -- The Federal Reserve issued final rules implementing the second phase of the credit card reform law. They are the most significant changes in credit card laws in decades. ... (See Credit CARD Act of 2009)

New arrivals to U.S. need to rebuild credit history -- Credit history from a foreign country won't follow you to the United States, although existing financial relationships can help you begin to build a U.S. credit history. ... (See Rebuild)

Debtor determined to become debt-free needs a plan -- A reader wants to start the new year with a sound financial plan to rid himself of debt and clean up his credit report. To do that will require commitment and a plan. ... (See 2010)

Daughter's card abuse hurts mom as authorized user -- A mom wants to be removed as an authorized user from her daughter's delinquent credit card account. Luckily, it's not that hard. ... (See Help)

Tales from the credit crypt: Credit counselors' crazy debt client stories -- Think you can astonish a credit counselor with your $20,000 credit card debt? Not a chance. Here are some stories from the trenches. ... (See Debt tales)

Bankruptcies soared 32% in 2009 -- A 'perfect storm' of unemployment and plunging house values sends filings up to highest level since a 2005 reform law went into effect. ... (See Bankruptcy)

Nevada surpasses Tennessee as highest per capita bankruptcy state -- The average resident of the Silver State was eight times more likely to file for bankruptcy than the average Alaskan, 2009 bankruptcy data show.How does your state rank? ... (See Bankruptcy filings)

Credit card interest rates drop once again -- Interest rates on new credit card offers fell again this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, but the typical borrower may not benefit. ... (See Rate report)

Come clean about debts before they damage your relationship -- Our expert advises a young man to tell his fiancee of his credit woes now -- or risk doing a world of damage to his relationship with the most important person in his life. ... (See Secrets)

Cardholders' mistakes can bring down authorized users' credit score -- When you're an authorized user on someone else's credit card account, you pay the price for other's credit mistakes. Luckily, you can take steps to minimize the damage. ... (See Piggybacking)

How to resolve a bogus medical bill -- There are steps to take to prevent a bogus medical bill from appearing on your credit report and to deal with it once it shows up. ... (See Bogus)

Don't hide debt problems from collectors, friends or family -- Secrecy about financial troubles only makes them worse. Being more open and building a support system can help you get through the tough times. ... (See Honest)

New Year's personal finance predictions for 2010 -- You'll change the ways you and your family will spend, borrow and save, experts predict. ... (See 2010)

Credit card rates dip again, but more hikes likely coming soon -- Interest rates on new credit card offers declined slightly this week, although experts say that dip doesn't mean cardholders should expect borrowing on plastic to get cheaper anytime soon. ... (See Rate report)

Keeping New Year's resolutions: experts' tips -- Three in four Americans will make a financial-related New Year's resolution for 2010, a survey says. But will they keep it? We speak with four experts who offer tips for making -- and sticking to -- your goals for the new year. ... (See 2010)

How to read FICO's explanations of what's hurting your credit score -- Those recommendations you see on a credit report about how to improve your score are sometimes nothing more than stock responses and shouldn't be taken so literally. They aren't actually personalized to your exact situation. ... (See FICO)

How fast does your credit score recover from your goofs? -- If you make smart decisions, those old credit goofs will hurt your score less and less over time. How much less? Well, that's still a bit of a mystery. ... (See Recovery)

Issuer of 79.9% interest rate credit card defends its product -- Subprime credit card marketers are looking for ways around new restrictions on sky-high fees for bad credit cards. One option they're testing: sky-high interest rates. ... (See 79.9 percent)

Interactive: Life cycle of a delinquent credit card account -- The longer your debt goes unpaid, the more it changes hands. Learn the ins and outs of the delinquent debt cycle in this interactive presentation. ... (See Cycle)

Adult son racks up $20,000 on mom's cards -- When an adult child abuses a parent's trust and charges more than $20,000 on joint cards, it's time to get tough and start selling his stuff. ... (See $20,000)

Credit card interest rates keep climbing higher -- Interest rates on new credit card offers climbed higher this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, as banks continue to charge cardholders more to carry a balance. ... (See Rate report)

Co-signed credit cards: Unloved option poised for comeback? -- Experts say they're a headache, issuers rarely offer it, yet the co-signed credit card may be making a comeback as a more-regulated industry searches for its lost profits. ... (See Comeback)

'No payment, no interest' credit card deal? No way -- Make no mistake: If you've got a credit card with a balance, you've got a minimum payment to make each month. If you don't make it, you're asking for trouble. ... (See Minimums)

Creative new fees escape CARD Act rules, surprise consumers -- The Credit CARD Act of 2009 puts the lid on some longtime charges levied against cardholders, but a new report shows that a crop of fees are quietly taking their place. ... (See Report)

Credit card interest rates continue moving higher -- Credit card interest rates jumped slightly again this week, as banks continued to make it more and more costly for consumers to use their plastic. ... (See Rate report)

Tori Spelling, Ed McMahon, Kim Kardashian, Courtney Love: Celebrity credit card lessons -- If we had the kind of money celebrities had, we'd do a better job managing our credit card debt, right? Judging by these celebrity credit card stories, maybe not. ... (See Lessons)

Author David Bach talks plastic strategies -- The Oprah-approved financial guru and author rings in 2010 with "Start Over, Finish Rich, " offering 10 steps to get you back on track in the coming year. ... (See Bach)

Don't expect to see cellphone payment history on your credit report -- Don't look for your cellphone provider to report your payment history -- good or bad -- to credit bureaus, unless you're so late with payments that they opt to close your account. ... (See Cellphone payments and your credit)

A desperate debtor's option: hardship programs -- Your debt's sky high and even meeting the minimum payment is out of reach. Here's hope: Some card issuers will allow you to enter into a hardship program to help you meet your obligations, but on more reasonable terms ... (See Hardship)

Credit card interest rates unchanged after holiday -- Credit card issuers took a holiday from raising interest rates this week, as experts began to see signs that consumers' access to credit may be starting to ease. ... (See Rate Report)

Can debt collectors garnish Social Security? -- Social Security benefits are usually protected from debt collectors, but you need to take certain steps so those funds are never frozen. ... (See Garnish)

Decade-old credit mistakes shouldn't appear on your report -- A delinquent loan should no longer appear on your credit report if the loan's more than seven years old. But if it does, take steps to remove it ASAP. ... (See Mistakes)

Frugality: Just a fad? Or will consumers keep saving after the recession? -- The tanking economy brought us recession chic. It became cool to clip coupons, throw potlucks and swap used items, but how long will it last? ... (See Spendthrifts)

When your credit's still married and you're not -- Jointly held credit card accounts can still haunt you years after you divorce. Make sure your ex is off and stays off your credit report. ... (See Divorce)

How to escape the credit card fee cycle -- Once you miss a payment or pay less than the minimum, you're setting yourself up for a never-ending spiral into the credit card fee abyss. ... (See Fees)

BofA rate hikes push national average credit card APR higher -- Annual percentage rates on new credit card offers rose slightly this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, as Bank of America increased rates on two of its cards. ... (See Rate report)

5 key federal laws help protect credit cardholders -- There are many federal laws that are in a credit cardholder's corner, and it's important that prospective and current cardholders are knowledgeable about their legal rights. Here are the top five laws covering consumer credit that you need to know. ... (See Laws)

How going to jail impacts your credit -- Having zero-balance credit cards go unused during an 18-month prison sentence shouldn't cause a cardholder's credit to suffer -- unless the issuer decides to close the idle account. ... (See Jail)

Explore all options before declaring bankruptcy -- You may think bankruptcy will solve all your debt problems, but it also creates a whole new, lasting set of issues that will take a long time to recover from. ... (See Bankruptcy)

Credit card etiquette: 8 examples of bad plastic manners (and their polite counterparts) -- We hope you don't recognize yourself in these examples of bad (credit) manners, but if you do have lapses in your crediquette, we can set you on the path to plastic refinement. ... (See 8 tips)

Credit card APRs fall sharply, but you shouldn't get too excited -- Annual percentage rates on new credit card offers fell sharply this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, but don't expect your APR to drop, too. ... (See Rate report)

Worst case co-signarios: How do you escape credit card co-sign contracts? -- Despite experts' advice, you did it anyway: You co-signed a for a loan or credit card. Now that you've wised up, can you escape? Maybe. ... (See Don't)

4 questions to ask before you co-sign on a credit card, other loan -- Explore alternatives and find out what you're in for with these questions for anyone who asks you to be a co-signer on a credit car or other loan. ... (See Co-signing a loan)

In default on car loan: What to do? -- If you are in default on a car loan, but want to make amends, it might help to sit down with the lender and discuss possible payment options. ... (See Default)

Help! My husband's debt is ruining our credit -- Before marriage, her credit was great. Now, her husband's debts are making their lives unmanageable. Is there hope? ... (See Married)

FICO reveals how common credit mistakes affect scores -- For the first time, the credit scoring firm discloses how many points a score will fall due to late payments or other errors. ... (See FICO score)

Credit card rates' ascent shows no sign of slowing -- It just keeps getting more and more expensive to be a credit card holder -- and analysts say there's little change in sight. ... (See Rate report)

Money and credit lessons learned from TV -- Whether they're frugal or free-spending, our favorite and classic TV characters are fountains of financial advice. ... (See Lessons)

Stipulated judgments: the 'secret' savior -- If you've been sued due to nonpayment, getting something called a stipulated judgment can save you from having your wages garnished or your property seized. ... (See Savior)

Minors seeking a credit card will need a helping hand from mom and dad -- A 16-year-old reader wants to know how she can get her own credit card. The answer: with a little help from mom or dad. ... (See 16)

How many credit cards do you need? There's no perfect answer -- There's no single, easy answer for how many credit cards someone should have. After all, It's not the number of cards you have, it's what you do with them that matters the most ... (See How many credit cards?)

Banks continue to tighten credit card lending standards, Fed report says -- When it comes to tightening lending, the Fed survey of senior loan officers shows credit card issuers have gone from death grip to light squeeze. ... (See Survey)

How to pay $12,000 in credit card debt quickly -- When it comes to paying off card debt, it's important to remember that there's no quick fix. Determination and patience will do the trick. ... (See Pay off)

There's a cost to paying less than you owe -- Before you jump at the chance to pay less than what you owe, think about what settling your debt will end up costing you. ... (See Costly)

Rates steady this week, but banks keep tweaking other terms -- Banks may have left rates unchanged this week, but they nevertheless made some changes behind the scenes that could impact cardholders' pocketbooks ... (See Rate report)

Living off credit cards alone for a year is a terrible idea -- Credit cards were never meant to be used to replace income over a long period of time, and using them that way can bring big trouble. ... (See Debt)

Rise in delinquencies signals prolonged credit card woes -- Though charge-offs decreased during September, the credit card industry braces for an increase in noncollectable debt as delinquencies rise. ... (See Woes)

Opting out of APR increase doesn't have to impact your credit -- It's a common question these days: Will opting out of a rate increase hurt my credit? The answer isn't so clear-cut. ... (See Score)

Don't blow first-time home buyer tax credit with credit card bills -- Running up credit card bills before closing can jeopardize that $8,000 tax break you were hoping would make you a first-time home buyer. ... (See Sprees)

Credit card interest rates push higher again -- APRs on new credit card offers inched up to 12.64 percent this week, says the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. This continues recent trends of rising interest rates this year, as banks continue to make moves ahead of a new card law. ... (See Rate report)

Uncle Sam wants you ... unless your credit stinks -- You may be ready to serve your country, but if your finances aren't in good shape, you might get washed out. ... (See Military)

Want a better FICO score? Step No. 1: Pay bills on time -- Paying your bills on time every time is vital, but it's just the start to building a good credit score. ... (See FICO)

Credit card rates flat as banks look for other ways to boost profits -- Interest rates may be flat, but don't cheer yet: Banks are simply shifting their money-making strategies, experts say. ... (See Rate report)

Low credit score? Good luck getting a new credit card, study says -- Consumers receive far fewer credit cards than a year ago; those approved for cards have better credit scores, says a study by credit bureau Equifax. ... (See credit trends)

Jon and Kate's 8 plus-size money mistakes -- The paparazzi-pursued loco parental units of reality TV, the Gosselins, set an example, say money experts -- of what NOT to do financially. ... (See Plus-size mistakes)

Don't let delinquent debt keep you from getting a mortgage -- Getting serious about buying a house someday? Those delinquent debts have got to go or your dreams of home ownership may remain just that -- a dream. ... (See Home)

Getting an iPhone, other fancy cell phone? Mind that other number: your credit score -- If you want to get the latest iPhone or other fancy cell phone, you may find your credit score is a key number. A bad one turns your phone into an expensive connection. ... (See Dialing dollars)

What to do when debt triples your income -- When your debt load is more than triple your income, it's time to seek a solution. Debt counseling, debt settlement and possible bankruptcy can set you free. ... (See Debt and disability)

How bad are your credit card mistakes? -- All mistakes with your credit are bad, but not all are equally bad. Grade yours on this 10-point scale. ... (See Mistakes)

Credit card APRs fall slightly, reversing recent rate-hike trend -- Credit card interest rates dropped slightly this week, after several banks made a commitment to abstaining from additional rate hikes. ... (See Rate report)

Act fast to remove authorized users when your credit goes south -- Authorized users on your credit card account suffer when your credit hits the skids. Our expert shows how to remove those users to minimize the damage. ... (See Bad credit)

Bankruptcy filings on track to hit 1.4 million in 2009 -- Spurred on by high unemployment, bankruptcies have steadily climbed toward the level present before a 2005 reform law that was supposed to hold down filings. ... (See Bankruptcies)

Mystery debt: A collector's goof becomes your recurring problem -- Prepare for a hassle if a collection mistake has your name on it -- phone calls and certified letters are in your future. ... (See Goof)

Nevada holds onto 'top spot' for U.S. bankruptcies in 3rd quarter -- Residents of Nevada, Tennessee and Georgia remain most likely to file bankruptcy, according to third quarter 2009 statistics. How likely are the neighbors in your state to file for protection from debts? ... (See Bankruptcy filings)

Debt collectors must prove the debt is yours -- A reader is being harassed for debt that she doesn't think is hers. Take these steps to take to prevent debt collection abuse. ... (See Proof)

Major issuers' rate hikes send national average card APR higher -- Several credit card issuers raised interest rates this week, driving the national average annual percentage rate on new credit card offers upward for the third straight week to 12.64 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Paying off a child's debt involves money and emotions, dollars and sense -- Paying off a child's debt is a lot more than writing a check. It involves money and emotions, dollars and sense. ... (See Strain)

Want a free FICO score? You're out of luck -- If you think you'll get a free FICO score with your free credit report at AnnualCreditReport.com, you're mistaken. If you want your FICO score, you'll have to pay. ... (See FICO)

The risks you incur when you co-sign -- Once you co-sign on a credit card, your rights to get out of the deal are limited, but you are still completely liable if the original account holder defaults. ... (See Risky)

American Express boosts national average credit card interest rate -- American Express this week raised annual percentage rates on several of its card offers, pushing the national average APR higher for the third time in four weeks. ... (See Rate report)

Options are limited for bad credit customers -- If you've got a bad credit history in this tight credit market, the odds of getting a credit card with a great interest rate are slim. ... (See APR)

Protect yourself from estranged husband poaching your good credit -- If an estranged spouse uses your identity and 'poaches' your good credit, he may have committed fraud. Protect yourself first then decide whether to put the screws to him ... (See Really estranged)

APRs rise, even after Fed leaves rates unchanged -- The Federal Reserve chose to leave lending rates unchanged earlier this week, but credit card issuers didn't follow suit. ... (See Rate report)

The risks you face when co-signing a loan -- When you co-sign on a loan and the original borrower stops paying, your credit report and credit score take a hit, too. ... (See Co-signer)

Does credit card debt follow you if you move overseas? -- Moving overseas doesn't mean you strand credit card debt acquired in the States -- especially if you ever plan on returning home ... (See Abroad)

Credit card rates steady as banks struggle with uncertain economy -- Amid mixed economic signals, banks kept interest rates unchanged on credit cards offers this week at 12.28 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Helping aging parents dig out of debt -- With credit card debt among seniors up 26 percent, experts tell you how to help aging parents get back on track without compromising your own financial future. ... (See Retirement and debt)

The biggest losers (of debt): How a family shed $106,000 in debt -- Five years ago, this New Richmond, Wis., family was drowning in debt. They licked it through frugality, determination and hard work. Here's how. ... (See Drowning)

Patience, persistence are keys to raising your credit score -- An impatient reader may not like the answer, but the the keys to raising your credit score from the depths are consistency, persistence and -- yes -- time. ... (See Time)

Going to your parents for a loan? Hit up Dad first, poll says -- According to a new poll conducted by Gfk Roper for CreditCards.com, male parents are 15 percent more likely to pay off $20,000 or more of their kids debt. ... (See Dad)

What you stand to lose if you don't pay your credit card bill -- A reader wonders just what would happen to her if she just stopped paying her credit card bill. Legal action, garnishment and property liens, our expert warns. ... (See Pay up)

After a pause, credit card interest rates resume upward march -- After staying flat the previous week, the national average interest rate on new credit card offers rose to 12.28 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

How to safely, securely destroy a credit card: 6 tips -- With credit card fraud and identity theft on the rise, a single scissor snip won't cut it anymore. ... (See Destroy)

Consumer credit plunges record $21.5 billion in July -- Consumer debt fell by an unprecedented $21.5 billion in July, according to new Federal Reserve data, as consumers continued to shy away from borrowing in the recession. ... (See G.19)

Credit card APRs steady, though banks are tweaking other terms -- Even as banks continue to tinker with their business models in reaction to new credit card legislation, the national average annual percentage rate on new credit card offers was unchanged this week at 12.17 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Personal finance boot camps fight debt with hard-nosed approach -- They're probably never going to force you to scrub the latrine, hike for miles in the driving rain or call you a maggot, but personal finance boot camps promise to use some tough love to help you gain control over your finances and debt once and for all. ... (See Boot camp)

How foreclosures, short sales, other mortgage defaults affect your credit -- How big a bite does a home foreclosure, short sale or other mortgage default take out of your credit score? ... (See Hit)

Credit card issuers don't make hardship programs easy -- It's a Catch-22. Though you've kept up payments until now, you can't pay anymore. But your issuer won't work with you until you start missing payments. What to do? ... (See Hardship)

After run of rate hikes, banks leave APRs unchanged -- Banks paused this week following a recent run of interest rate increases, leaving the national average annual percentage rate on new credit cards unchanged at 12.17 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Learn your options when dealing with crushing medical debt -- Communicate, and secure your housing and transportation first, says The Credit Guy. ... (See Medical)

Credit card charge-offs, delinquencies reverse upward trend -- Credit card charge-offs and delinquencies showed first signs of slowing down in July 2009. ... (See Moody's)

10 ways to pay down credit card debt -- A young family with $35,000 in credit card debt wonders whether filing for bankruptcy is the solution. It isn't, says our expert. ... (See Debt)

Help with credit card debt -- Whether you're trying to dig out from under debt or just avoid it in the first place, our Credit Card Help section can help you make better decisions ... (See Debt)

Know your rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act -- Experts say consumers should face the facts and deal with debt collectors, but also know and understand their consumer rights and protections ... (See Debt collection)

Debt collectors' ethics codes -- Associations of debt collectors try to curb abuses in the collections industry ... (See Ethics)

How to cancel a credit card - and close it without hurting your score -- Anyone can take scissors to a credit card, but it takes skill to cancel a card without nicking your credit score ... (See Cancel a credit card)

11 tips for dealing with debt collection, collectors -- Deal with it, experts say. Otherwise, matters can only get worse. CreditCards.com has compiled tips to make this process easier. ... (See Debt collection)

Credit card debt negotiation in 3 (not) easy steps -- You can still dicker over your credit card debt and work out better terms, but expect a marathon, not a sprint ... (See Negotiate debt)

Debt collection sample letters -- Often, people in debt can restrict how and when debt collectors can contact them, but to be heard, debtors should assert their rights in writing ... (See Debt collection sample letters)

Q and A on first phase of new credit card law -- Consumers get the right to opt out of rate increases, notification and billing requirements become clearer. ... (See Law)

A guide to navigating through bankruptcy -- If you're among the growing number of people considering bankruptcy, this package of news articles, tips and statistics will help to get you through ... (See Bankruptcy)

Firsthand lessons from dealing with my parents' credit card debt after death -- After her parents' sudden demise, a daughter shares hard-won lessons learned from having to cope with their finances. ... (See Lessons)

Fed report: Lenders again tighten credit card loan standards, but not as much -- Credit card issuers again cut credit in the second quarter of 2009, as did lenders of many kinds, according to the latest data from the Federal Reserve. ... (See Tighter)

Credit card charge-offs, delinquencies hit all-time high -- The second quarter closed with the highest consumer credit card delinquency and charge-off rates since the Federal Reserve began tracking data on the subjects. ... (See Record)

Just one day late can hurt that credit card rate -- Even if you're tardy in paying your credit card bill by a single day, it can trigger a rate increase. ... (See One day)

14 key considerations for when filing bankruptcy -- No one intends to go bankrupt. But if it happens to you, there are ways to handle the money issues smartly. ... (See 14 tips)

When your spouse's debt collection becomes your nightmare -- If your spouse's credit card debt is headed south and the debt collectors are calling, there is a good chance that your assets are at risk, too. ... (See Debt)

States weigh limits on credit checks for employment -- In July 2009, Hawaii became the second state to limit the practice of allowing all employers to make hiring decisions based on a job applicant's credit score. ... (See Score)

Killing off the credit card balance that refuses to die -- Late charges, over-the-limit fees, interest rate hikes and cash advance fees can all prevent you from paying down that previously unrelenting credit card balance. ... (See Balance)

What are your rights when opting out of a rate increase? -- You can't opt out of a rate increase after the stated deadline, but you may be able to freeze the account at the old rate. ... (See Opt out)

Can one spouse's bankruptcy destroy the other's credit? -- If your spouse files for bankruptcy, your credit score may or may not be impacted, depending on where you live and what you owe. ... (See Bankruptcy)

Credit card APRs jump for 4th time in 5 weeks -- Following a brief pause last week, the national average annual percentage rate on new credit card offers rose for the fourth time in the past five weeks to 12.06 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Survey: Credit card, collection complaints growing quickly -- The nation's fastest growing consumer complaints involve aggressive collection tactics for credit card and many other debts, says a survey released Thursday. ... (See card complaints)

Considering bankruptcy? Use the 'divide by 60' test to see if you should -- Take your unsecured debt and divide it by 60 to see whether you're a candidate for bankruptcy, says Todd Ossenfort, The Credit Guy. ... (See 60)

9 things you must know about debt management plans -- Debt management plans can help you get back on track, but they can also be unnecessary and even detrimental when done poorly or for the wrong reasons. Here's what you need to know ... (See DMPs)

Create a separate credit identity after divorce -- If you are still an authorized user on an ex's credit cards, your credit score is dependent on their payment behavior. Your best bet is to get your own credit. ... (See Divorce)

After weeks of increases, credit card APRs finally stand still -- Ending a streak of three straight weekly APR increases, the national average interest rate on new credit card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. Just don't expect it to last. ... (See Rate report)

Closing credits for filmmakers: Credit cards no longer viable as movie funding source -- Credit is the lifeblood of America's independent film industry, but stringent loan regulations curtailed access to credit and threaten the industry. ... (See Indies)

9 tips for job seekers with bad credit -- As the recession drags on, times are getting tougher for job hunters. The good news is you can still find a well-paying job even if you have lousy credit. These nine tips can help. ... (See Jobs)

Bankruptcies per capita, all 50 states, 2007-2009 -- Nevada jumped Tennessee to become the leader in per capita bankruptcy for 2009. Where does your state rank? ... (See Broke)

5 post-bankruptcy myths -- While bankruptcy may offer a fresh start, many consumers worry about how it will ultimately impact their financial future. Recovery takes time, but it's not as bleak as you may think. ... (See 5 bankruptcy myths)

How being an authorized user can hurt your credit score -- If you are an authorized user on someone's credit card account and that account is not in good standing, it will drag down your credit score. ... (See Credit)

Bankruptcy filings return to pre-reform-law pace -- Largely due to the recession, a 2005 law clamping down on filing had only temporary impact. ... (See FIlings)

Credit card APRs rise for third straight week -- Borrowing money on a new credit card continues to become increasingly expensive, as banks work to protect themselves from a weak economy. ... (See Rate report)

Let's talk credit: 8 must-have couple conversations -- Attitudes about using credit cards vary dramatically, and learning a partner's outlook can avert all-too-common money disputes. Here are the eight top credit issues every couple should tackle. ... (See Talk to me)

Study: Your brain may be causing your financially risky choices -- A new study suggests you may be predisposed to make risky financial decisions by the same part of your brain that contributes to gambling and shopping addiction. ... (See Brain)

Credit card interest rates keep moving higher -- The cost of using credit cards continues to rise, giving consumers yet another reason to keep their plastic in their wallets. ... (See Rate report)

Avoid bankruptcy during messy divorce -- The last thing you need to do as you start your new, independent, financial life is to put yourself through the trauma of going bankrupt. ... (See Divorce)

Credit card interest rates rise ahead of new law -- Regulations plus recession make card issuers pull the APR trigger and hike cardholders' rates. ... (See Rates rise)

New federal guidelines help consumers dispute credit report errors -- Under a set of newly introduced guidelines, consumers gain the right to take up disputes over credit report inaccuracies diirectly with the businesses that supplied the faulty data. ... (See Disputes)

When your ex doesn't pay on joint accounts -- If you rely on your ex to pay down on joint accounts after a divorce, expect to be disappointed. ... (See Joint disaster)

Dumped by your credit card issuer? 5 tips to survive the breakup -- What should you do if you suddenly find yourself dumped? Here are five steps to take when your credit card issuer just isn't into you anymore. ... (See Dumped)

CreditCards.com's Weekly Rate Report: Rates barely lower -- The national average annual percentage rate on new credit card offers edged barely lower this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report, but analysts expect interest rates to rise in the not-too-distant future. ... (See Rate report)

When money woes hit home, take stock and make a plan -- Our expert offers a plan for a family with two young children, a $4,800 monthly mortgage payment, $14,000 in credit card debt and suddenly has been hit with a job loss. ... (See What to do)

Credit cards around the world -- Credit cards have spread around the globe, but the differences in how they're offered illustrate differences between cultures. ... (See World)

Credit Card Help: 9 tips for protecting your credit cards, credit score -- 9 tips for protecting not only your credit cards, but your credit score, too ... (See Protect)

Credit Card Help: 8 steps to picking a credit counselor -- Credit counseling agencies can help you get out of debt. Learn how to select the right one for your debt issues ... (See Counselor)

Free credit reports: How to get the actual free one -- The federal government has mandated the three major credit bureaus give free credit reports to consumers at least once per bureau per year. Here's how to get your ... (See Free credit report)

Credit Card Help: 8 legitimate ways to improve your credit score now -- There are no instant miracles that improve a flagging credit score, but there are quick and legal ways to improve it ... (See Improve)

Credit Card Help: Getting married? Don't say 'I do' to bad credit -- With financial mismanagement topping the list of reasons why couples seek divorces, experts say it makes sense to check out your partner’s creditworthiness ... (See Marriage, finances, credit and debt)

How to add a 100-word written statement to your credit report -- Your credit report is usually the final word when it comes to lending, but the rules let you make 100 of those words your own ... (See 100-word statement)

Credit Card Help: How to dispute, fix credit report errors -- Credit report errors are more common than you expect, but it's on you to get them fixed before they cost you big the next time you go looking for a loan, a home or even a job ... (See Dispute)

CreditCards.com's Weekly Rate Report: Rates unchanged -- Credit card interest rates didn't move this week, but experts say recently introduced laws and an eventual economic recovery likely mean higher credit card APRs in the not-too-distant future. ... (See Rate report)

When family members ruin your credit -- Authorized users on your credit card have two freedoms: to rack up debt on your account and to bail when it comes to paying it off ... (See Family)

A guide to the Credit CARD Act of 2009 -- The federal government has enacted sweeping reforms into how credit cards work; learn what they mean to you through this interactive guide. ... (See A guide)

How to shop your way to a better credit score -- Credit card issuers increasingly use complicated formulas to analyze their cardholders' purchasing patterns for signs of increased risk. ... (See Score)

Are you responsible for your late parent's debts? -- One nervous reader asks whether a credit card company can come after her to pay for her father's debts after he passes away. ... (See Debts)

Think you're a credit expert? Take our quizzes and prove it! -- Are you a credit expert? Or maybe you don't know an APR from NPR or CPR. Whichever side you fall on -- or if you're somewhere in the middle -- you can test your knowledge of credit in our quizzes ... (See Quiz)

With credit card bills, don't be late, negotiate -- Reaching out before the bill is due damages your credit score the least, says The Credit Guy. ... (See Negotiate)

Big credit card losses continue to dog U.S. banks -- The banking industry has 3.4 billion reasons why credit card debt is proving to be a major pain in its neck. ... (See Debt)

The ugly side of debt collection -- Debt collectors would much rather settle for less than the full amount and get it all at once than receive a small amount each month. ... (See Collection)

Credit not right? Time for a credit card checkup -- Is your credit not feeling quite right? If so, it may be overdue for an annual checkup. Fortunately, a thorough exam doesn't involve an appointment with a hard-to-reach specialist: This Rx is strictly DIY. ... (See Checkup)

A practical guide of what to expect when filing for bankruptcy -- American bankruptcy laws were created for catastrophic events, where debt resolution can give you a fresh start and let you become a productive, contributing citizen again. ... (See Bankrupt)

Your keys to getting in the 700+ credit score club -- Having good credit pays -- in dollars and cents. In an ever-tightening credit market, having a solid credit history with a credit score well over 700 will open doors to money-saving opportunities ... (See Club)

Your options for negotiating outstanding debt -- If your income has been dramatically reduced, then you may qualify for some assistance from the creditor that might not negatively affect your credit score. ... (See Score)

You can do it! 10 ways to motivate debt repayment -- Just seeing the amount of your liabilities can instill a "Why try? I'll never pay it all off" despair. While high debt can make you feel hopeless, it's not. Effort does produce results. ... (See Yes you can!)

Lending standards keep tightening, Fed says -- It didn't get any easier to borrow on credit cards at the start of this year, based on the Federal Reserve's quarterly loan officers' survey released today. ... (See Loan survey)

Authors explain how to duck debt reaffirmation traps -- When seeking bankruptcy protection, some unwary consumers may be cajoled or outright conned by their creditors into remaining on the hook for a car loan or home mortgage through a process known as reaffirmation. ... (See Traps)

Can my Social Security benefits be garnished for credit card debt? -- Be at ease; your Social Security can't be garnished for credit card debt. But you still need to get a budget together. ... (See Garnish)

Survey: 34 million Americans admit paying credit card bills late -- More than 58 million Americans admit they don't pay their bills on time, including 34 million who were late paying credit card bills, according to an annual consumer survey. ... (See Survey)

How to react to a 'rate-jack' attack -- The bad news is in. Your credit card issuer has sent a change in term notice of an impending interest rate hike on your account. But you have options. ... (See How to handle credit card rate increases)

Credit card help -- We're featuring highlights from our new section, called Credit Card Help: The Basic Fundamentals of Credit Cards. Our goal is to give you all the information you need to become a smart credit cardholder. ... (See Help)

Is the American love affair with credit cards over? -- It's no surprise that many consumers are unhappy with credit card companies, but their unhappiness may lead to long-term behavioral changes ... (See Change)

Egg or sperm donation, medical experiments: Struggling consumers go to extremes to tackle debt -- You've given blood, sweat and tears to pay off those credit card bills, but what about your sperm and eggs? In tough times, some consumers see cash offered by participation in medical tests, sperm and egg donation as a viable way to attack card debt. ... (See Extreme)

Organizations launch sites to promote financial literacy -- As budgets tighten, bankruptcies mount, and students accrue massive debt, several consumer and banking groups have stepped in to help with new financial educational tools. ... (See Tools)

Coalition takes battle over credit card practices to issuers' boardrooms -- Religion-oriented investors, consumer groups file shareholder proposals asking major credit card corporations to examine their own practices and excise any that are predatory. ... (See Shareholders)

Top credit card issuers back new debt management plan (DMP) repayment relief program -- In partnership with a major consumer credit counseling accrediting agency, 10 of the nation's largest credit card issuers have agreed to provide additional relief to consumers struggling to repay their debts. ... (See Debt payback relief)

Ex-wife maxes out joint cards: Who pays? -- Divorce is at best unpleasant and at worse very painful. Plus, the lingering separation of finances can add to the pain for years. ... (See Maxed out)

Hybrid credit, prepaid cards may offer crunch relief -- Consumers trapped in the credit crunch may soon have another choice when hybrid credit/prepaid card combos become more widespread. ... (See Hybrid credit, prepaid cards)

Card issuers more willing to make concessions in debt deals, but fewer consumers qualify -- Realizing something's better than nothing, card issuers are OKing more generous debt management plans -- but they're still too costly for many consumers. ... (See Debt)

Retired, widowed, overcome by credit card debt -- Seniors with credit card debt who live just off Social Security may have to make some tough financial decisions in order to live within their income. ... (See In debt)

FDIC: Overdue loans on the rise -- FDIC data shows that every state experienced an increase in unpaid loans from 2007 to 2008. Use this graphic to find out how your state performed. ... (See In the red)

Credit Card Help: 10 things you must know about credit reports and credit scores -- You may have heard the terms credit history and credit score. But what exactly is a credit history, what is a credit score -- and why are they so important? ... (See Reports and scores)

Credit Card Help: 8 things you must know about credit card debt -- Credit card debt is not inevitable. Here are some basic credit guidelines to help keep you out of debt ... (See Credit card debt)

Credit Card Help: 10 worst credit card mistakes -- Making these 10 mistakes will turn good credit into bad and bad credit into lenders-won't-go-near-you credit. ... (See Mistakes)

Joint accounts: Till debt do you part -- Having a joint credit card with your spouse doesn't cause your credit histories to mix. But missing a payment will affect both credit scores ... (See Credit)

Credit card authorized users, joint account holders: Know the difference -- The differences are significant between authorized users and joint account holders -- especially in payment responsibilities. ... (See Opening Credits)

Video: The basics of debt settlement -- A credit counselor discusses what debt settlement is and how it can help or hurt you. ... (See Credit card video: The basics of debt settlement)

7 cases when it's OK to carry a credit card balance -- It's generally unwise to carry a balance, but sometimes the alternatives are worse. ... (See Balance)

Credit card interest rates - interactive graphic on APR changes -- Since coming under financial pressure, credit card issuing banks have stopped passing along rate cuts from the Federal Reserve, CreditCards.com data show ... (See Credit card interest rates)

How to handle credit card bills when pink slips loom -- For those who are struggling to make credit card payments now or will if they lose their jobs, rising interest rates could present a real problem -- but there is help. ... (See Pink slip)

10 grandchildren + $100,000 in card debt = bankruptcy? -- Even though bankruptcy may seem like the answer to clean the debt slate, if you don't change your situation, it won't help at all. ... (See $100,000)

Credit Cardholders' Bill of Rights gets 1st House hearing of 2009 -- Federal legislative would codify pro-consumer card regulations; opponents say it would go into effect so fast it would wreck the system. ... (See Bill)

7 tips for starting a credit history amid an economic crisis -- In today’s rocky economy, those seeking credit for the first time must adopt new strategies, think creatively. ... (See Starting a credit history during an economic crisis)

FTC charges seven credit repair companies with deceit -- The Federal Trade Commission filed a complaint today with the U.S. District Court of New Jersey accusing seven companies and their principals of violating federal law by falsely promising to erase all negative information from a consumer's credit report. ... (See Credit)

Credit card video: Credit card debt warning signs -- A credit counseling expert discusses signs that might indicate you're in trouble with credit card debt. ... (See Credit card debt video)

Credit card glossary terms to know when filing for bankruptcy -- Experts will tell you that bankruptcy should be a last resort after all other avenues to repay your debt have been exhausted. ... (See Credit card glossary terms)

Credit card glossary terms to know when you're in debt -- Experts advise to always pay off your balance, don't spend more than you have and keep your credit balance well below 50 percent of your available credit. ... (See Debt)

Credit card delinquencies fell year to year, TransUnion says -- Although recent data showed an annual decline in credit card delinquencies during late 2008, that trend is likely already over. ... (See Delinquencies)

Tiny payments don't keep creditors away -- Contrary to urban legend, making a small payment won't keep the creditors away; you have to pay at least the minimum payment. ... (See Payment)

Federal Reserve's January 2009 G.19 report on consumer credit shows jump in spending -- Credit card balances rose in January, according to the latest data from the Federal Reserve, as workers saved their incomes and the unemployed were forced to live on plastic. ... (See G.19)

Credit card charge-offs hit record high in January -- Banks increasingly abandoned their attempts to collect money from delinquent credit cardholders in January, according to research and risk analysis firm Moody's. ... (See Bad debt)

When credit card debt ruins retirement -- When credit card debt dulls the glow of your golden years, you have options: reverse mortgages, bankruptcy or credit counseling. ... (See Retirement)

Mad at your credit card issuer? You still have to pay -- Mad at your credit card issuer? While you may resent having to pay that bill, choosing not to pay it will hurt you even more. ... (See Mad)

ID theft, debt collection top list of consumer complaints -- In the Federal Trade Commission's 2008 compilation of consumer gripes, ID Theft ran first for the ninth straight year, and complaints about credit cards jumped into the top 20. ... (See Consumer complaints)

Laid off and in debt: 5 steps to take now to keep credit intact -- Millions of Americans are now without jobs, and many most likely carry credit card debt. Here are steps to take immediately to protect your credit. ... (See Laid off)

Consumers have fewer options for using credit cards for medical expenses -- As the credit crunch deepens, using credit cards to pay for health and medical expenses may no longer be an option. ... (See Crunch)

Issuers offer new tools to aid, educate credit cardholders -- The lending industry may have played a major role in leading us into the current financial crisis, but when it comes to consumers' personal finances, credit card issuers want you to know they are here to help. ... (See New tools)

Minor's credit card contract raises legal, ethical questions -- A credit card contract with 17-year-old is likely not enforceable -- with some exceptions. However, continuing to run up debt on that card raises some tricky moral and ethical questions. ... (See Ethics)

4 reasons you should get a department store credit card -- Often (and justly) maligned, retail store cards sometimes can help. ... (See Retail)

Consumers lose access to major credit score -- Consumers have lost access to a key version of the credit score many banks use to make lending decisions. ... (See Experian )

Steps to take to pay off old debt -- Your credit report may not reveal all past debts, but contacting creditors may restart the clock on the statute of limitations. ... (See Old debt)

Lessons in paying off delinquent debt -- Settling an old debt won't necessarily improve your credit score, but it can free you of the collection process and to know that you made good on your obligation ... (See Old debt)

How to avoid debt collectors' fees -- Debt collectors often try to tack on a separate fee to your debt, which is governed by law and has to be reasonable. ... (See Collectors)

Credit card forbearance programs offer reprieve from debt -- Major credit card issuers' programs that allow temporary relief for overstretched cardholders are busier than ever, and some of the issuers are improving them. ... (See Forbearance)

Experian FICO score may soon be off-limits to consumers -- Come Valentine's Day, you will likely lose access to your FICO score from credit bureau Experian, even though lenders will continue to use that score to make decisions about your credit. ... (See FICO)

5 tips for protecting your credit during marriage breakup -- Marriage breakups are messy, messy things. However, taking these five steps can help you protect your credit during this trying time. ... (See 5 breakup money tips)

Fitch: Credit card late payments hit record high, charge-offs spike -- Fitch Ratings reports that the recession is taking its toll on credit cardholders, as a record number of them pay their bills late. ... (See Credit card delinquencies)

Income down, bills up. Time for credit counseling? -- When faced with spiraling debt, seeking advice from an accredited debt counselor will help you consider your options. ... (See Options)

When medical problems hit, bankruptcy can make sense -- Bankruptcy laws were created for catastrophic situations, not for carelessness. However, filing should be done only when other options have been considered. ... (See Last resort)

Long-awaited credit scoring revisions unveiled -- The rollout of the long-awaited update to Fair Isaac's popular FICO credit scoring model was finally announced today, but it will likely take some before the changes have a real impact. ... (See FICO revisions)

7 bad credit card habits to break now -- and how to break them -- Just about everyone has a few destructive habits to break -- and when it comes to credit, the sooner you replace them with more positive behaviors, the more money you'll save. ... (See Bad habits)

Bankruptcies surge in 2008, passing 1 million mark again -- Personal bankruptcies surged to more than 1 million filings in the United States in 2008 -- the most since a rewrite of bankruptcy laws took effect in 2005. ... (See Bankruptcy)

Canceled debts will lead to IRS tax -- When collectors discharge old debts, they will report that to the IRS as income to you, leaving you with what could be a hefty tax bill. ... (See Discharged debts)

Poll: 1 in 3 resolve to slash debt this year -- About 1 in 3 consumers resolved to reduce their debt in 2009, based on New Year's resolutions outlined in a new poll from CreditCards.com. Still, Americans are more committed to spending time with family and losing weight than erasing their debt. ... (See Debt)

The spiritual side of debt counseling: faith-based debt counselors abound -- For the devout in search of debt counseling, faith-based organizations can offer more than just number-crunching, dollars-and-cents advice. They can offer spiritually sound financial counsel that can help debtors chart a course to financial freedom. ... (See Faith)

Are you a bankruptcy risk? Enigmatic score may tell lenders -- It's a number that lenders may consider when deciding whether or not to lend you money, but it isn't the well-known credit score. Meet the bankruptcy score, the credit score's more mysterious cousin. ... (See Score)

How to keep debt collectors at bay -- No matter what your circumstances, you have the legal right to ask collectors to stop harassment ... (See Collectors)

Here's how to help young adults with bad credit -- Many young adults find themselves in credit card debt with no means or knowledge on how to get themselves out. Here's some advice. ... (See Credit lessons)

Credit card statistics, debt statistics, industry facts -- Credit card statistics, surveys and research from a variety of sources, all cited, making fact-checking and research easy ... (See Credit card statistics)

7 things not to do when you've maxed out your credit cards -- With unemployment rising and many credit card companies slamming the door on new credit and slashing current credit limits, many consumers find themselves moving ever closer to maxing out their credit cards. In this situation, the best thing to do may be to figure out what you shouldn't do. ... (See Maxed)

Take these 3 steps when bank account seized by collectors -- You can't stop or reverse the seizure of your bank account to repay outstanding debts, but you can take steps to protect your other assets and rebuild your credit. We'll lay out what you should do. ... (See Seized)

6 new rules for negotiating changes in credit card terms -- With credit card companies slashing credit lines and raising interest rates to recoup heavy losses, cardholders face new hurdles when trying to negotiate credit card terms. ... (See 6 rules)

Statutes of limitation for credit card debt collection, all 50 states -- Creditors have a limited time in which to file suit over unpaid credit card debt. Here are the statutes of limitation for all 50 states, plus the District of Columbia ... (See Statutes of limitation for credit card debt)

U.S. bankruptcies top 1 million in '08 -- U.S. bankruptcy filings topped 1 million in 2008, according to figures released by the American Bankruptcy Institute. ... (See Bankruptcy)

7 irrational credit card fears (and 7 REAL worries) -- Are you or someone you know afraid to use -- or even obtain -- plastic? Sure, credit cards come with a series of essential cautions, but overall they are safe and useful financial management tools. ... (See Fears)

Credit card balance transfers: The landscape is changing -- Balance transfers are valuable tools, but the radically changed 2009 landscape means they're trickier and harder to find. ... (See Balance transfer)

Best credit card stories of 2008 -- The year 2008 saw unprecedented change in the credit card industry, turning card debt from convenient friend into everyone's enemy. These are the top 10 stories that helped chronicle it. ... (See 2008 review)

9 predictions for credit cards in 2009 -- This has been a tumultuous year for credit cardholders and issuers. What does 2009 hold? We'll take a look. ... (See '09 card predictions)

Credit card consolidation -- Methods for credit card consolidation and how to save money in interest and finance charges. ... (See credit card consolidation)

Strategies for escaping a too-expensive auto lease -- If you signed an lease that turns out to be unaffordable, you have a few options, but most aren't pretty. ... (See Lease)

Credit score formulas not changing as credit limits slashed -- Banks' decision to cut credit limits may hurt cardholders, but borrowers shouldn't expect any immediate help from the companies that decide how those lines of credit impact credit scores. ... (See Score)

Leaving debt behind in another country -- Although credit scores don't cross borders, don't bank on being able to just move away from your money troubles. ... (See Bailing on debt)

Your monthly credit card statement gets a makeover -- Credit card issuers have begun to roll out new monthly statements to their customers. The makeovers were required by new federal rules that take full effect July 1, 2010. ... (See Changes)

Ignoring old debt can come back to haunt -- Lenders view delinquent, but paid off debt better than delinquent unpaid debt. ... (See Bad debt)

Credit card marketer must repay customers $114 million -- The Federal Trade Commission has ended its suit against subprime credit card marketer CompuCredit Corp. with an agreement for the company to repay card users $114 million. ... (See Lawsuit)

The wisdom of bailing family members out of debt -- if that fresh start comes too easily, in a few years they can be back in line looking for another fresh start, and another. ... (See Helping out)

7 tips to avoid a credit card late fee -- Being even a minute late with a credit card payment can cost you dearly -- as much as $39 each time, according to one recent survey -- but some simple steps can help keep your exposure to these extra costs to a minimum. ... (See Late fees)

FTC settles 'Tele-PHONEY' case against fee-harvesting credit card -- Florida-based company used fast-talking computerized voice to deceive consumers, federal agency alleges. ... (See Settle)

Keeping your credit score clean before you close on a home -- Unwitting homebuyers who go on a credit card binge risk losing their pre-approval status and financing. ... (See Homebuyers)

FACTA and the rules behind getting a free credit report -- A federal law known as FACTA provides that credit reporting bureaus must provide a free copy of your credit report every 12-month period. ... (See FACTA )

10 tips for graduating from subprime to prime credit cardholder -- While most people wisely avoid subprime cards -- which feature low credit limits, high annual fees and sky-high annual percentage rates -- they are one of the best ways for consumers boost their credit before graduating to a more attractive card, experts say. ... (See Prime)

Got bad credit? Know your bad credit credit card choices -- Those with bad credit have choices -- some dangled by predators looking to make their money problems worse. ... (See Danger)

How to talk to creditors when you can't pay credit card bills -- A step-by-step guide to talking with creditors when there isn't enough cash for a complete payment. ... (See Deal)

How debt settlement works, how it affects credit scores -- Debt settlement lets you escape part of your debt, but at a price to your credit score. ... (See Score)

When collectors come after you for ex's unpaid debt -- It's an all-too-common problem: Your ex defaults on credit card debt on a joint account, so collectors are coming after you. What are your options? ... (See Ex-spouse)

Step-by-step guide to checking your minor child's credit -- If there are indications your child's identity has been stolen, these steps will help you successfully contact the credit bureaus to check. ... (See Identity theft)

Paying less than minimum won't ward off garnishment -- Paying less than the minimum amount won't ward off garnishment. It's best to contact creditors directly to work out a payment plan. ... (See Small payments)

Debt collectors to debtors: Let's make a deal -- The tough economy is forcing debt collectors to rethink how they do business. Many will now accept down payments and a little each month from cash-strapped debtors. ... (See Debt)

Consumer credit report 100-word statement sample letters -- These sample 100-word letters -- tailored to satisfy each of the Big Three credit bureaus and fit several situations -- can help you plead your case on your credit report ... (See 100-word statement sample letters)

Behind on car lease payments: What to do? -- When facing repossession of your car for falling behind on lease payments, it's best to try to ask for more time rather than steal the car. ... (See Behind)

Credit card debt forgiveness? Forget about it, OCC says -- The Office of the Comptroller of Currency issued a response to a proposal to forgive some borrowers' credit card debts. No way, OCC says. The plan was supported by the banking industry and consumer groups. ... (See No way)

CreditCards.com's credit crunch survival guide -- Credit's getting tougher to come by these days, and this credit crunch impacts virtually every American. So what is a consumer to do? It depends on how you use your card. With that in mind, we've created this guide to help you make your way. ... (See Crunch)

Disabled vet seeks relief from credit card debt -- A disabled veteran living on a fixed government income is overcome by credit card debt and seeks a way out. ... (See Help!)

Take control of debt, avoid bankruptcy -- Bankruptcy is not the easy solution to debt reduction -- it's expensive, takes time and paperwork and destroys your credit rating for almost a decade. ... (See Bankruptcy)

Credit card securities facing difficult times -- Securitized credit card debt portfolios of major card issuers are experiencing greater losses as economy slows and job losses increase. ... (See Delinquencies)

Fed report: Banks tighten lending standards even more -- Lenders are sharply tightening standards, by cutting credit limits and increasing minimum payments and required scores. ... (See Cuts)

Credit card addiction: How to break the spending cycle -- For compulsive buyers, the overwhelming need to buy is an obsession that can ruin finances, marriages, careers and even lives, say compulsive shopping addicts and researchers. ... (See Compulsive shopping)

Leaving country won't avoid wage garnishment -- Leaving the country to escape credit card debt doesn't guarantee that it will be gone if and when you come back. ... (See No escape)

Consumer, lender groups join to ask Feds for credit card debt forgiveness -- Many consumers can no longer qualify for traditional debt reduction plans, two groups have asked to test a more generous debt-reduction plan. ... (See Debt plan)

How HUD evaluates nontraditional credit for FHA mortgages -- Here are some of the guidelines issued in 2008 by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development for establishing and evaluating nontraditional credit histories. ... (See Nontraditional credit)

Surveys say: Americans report cutting back spending, debt -- Recent polls conducted by three different groups echo CreditCards.com "Taking Charge" survey: consumers are adapting to changing economy. ... (See Economy)

Using retirement to pay off high debt isn't the answer -- Using retirement funds to pay down high credit card debt isn't the best solution. Creating a budget and living within your means is. ... (See Budget)

Learn the ABCs of credit scores, credit scoring -- Credit scores are intriciate, but increasingly important for consumers to know about. We'll break down the credit scoring basics. ... (See Credit scores)

How wage garnishment works -- and how to avoid it -- Garnishment, a last-ditch effort to collect debt, can result in a court order seizing part of your wages freezing and then draining your bank accounts. Here's how it works -- and how to avoid it ... (See How garnishment works)

FTC cracks down on 'credit repair' scammers -- The Federal Trade Commission today announced the forced closure of a number of businesses that targeted consumers with false claims of boosting their credit scores. ... (See Credit repair)

Wage garnishment after unemployment -- A closer look at how wage garnishment works when you lose your job, get a severance package and get unemployment. ... (See Rules)

Moody's: Credit card charge-offs rise 48 percent in August '08 -- Moody's Investors Service reports that credit card charge-offs rose 48 percent in August 2008, and it expects charge-offs to continue to rise throughout 2009. ... (See Moody's)

Debt collection goes virtual -- Companies are trying new ways to get delinquent borrowers to pay up. One firm recently launched a 'Virtual Collection Agent' that's being rolled out by several major issuers. ... (See Virtual collections)

Don't hide credit woes from children, family -- How much should you tell your children about your financial difficulties? Experts say parents should let children know when the family is facing hard times, and maybe get the kids to help out. ... (See Money woes and kids)

5 tips for those considering bankruptcy -- Bankruptcy experts, attorneys and consumer credit counselors offer advice to those thinking of filing for bankruptcy ... (See 5 basic bankruptcy tips)

Credit recovery advice: Start slow, do it right this time -- When pulling out of bankruptcy, it's important to understand how you got there in the first place in order to avoid getting there again. ... (See Credit limits)

Three years later, bankruptcy law fails to quash filings -- On the third anniversary of bankruptcy reform law, critics wonder how much bankruptcy filings will grow in economic downturn. ... (See Bankruptcy)

When debt collectors don't play by the rules -- When debt collectors don't reveal how much you owe, you have rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act to find out how much you owe, how much you paid and what your interest rate is. ... (See Consumer rights)

Bankruptcy filings, state by state, 2005-2010 -- Interactive map shows rate of each state's bankruptcy filings, and how the pace fell off a cliff in 2005, then rebounded. ... (See Bankruptcy map)

Study: Delinquencies ramping up for those who took out mortgages recently -- It used to be that homeownership was a mark of stability, a factor that lenders took into account by opening their vaults a little wider to those who had mortgages. No more. ... (See ARMs)

Auditor will review 650,000 Cap One credit card accounts to ensure money is returned -- Capital One must repay $340,000 to credit card users because the company collected old debts that had been discharged in Chapter 13 bankruptcy. ... (See Cap One)

What credit card users need to know to survive the 2008 credit crunch -- Experts advise credit card users to pay down credit card debt and wean themselves off of credit card spending. ... (See Cash only)

Treasury, Ad Council team up to promote credit smarts among young consumers -- New educational campaign targets younger consumers with the message: Take control of your credit and personal finances. ... (See Control your credit)

Review the new interactive credit card game -- CreditCards.com asked young consumers to review a new interactive game designed to educate 18- to 24-year-olds about credit and personal finance. ... (See Credit)

Credit card penalty rates: Mistakes that trigger default APRs -- Credit cardholders should recognize that they may be just one late payment away from credit card penalty (default) rates, and sharply higher bills. ... (See Penalty rates)

False debt reduction claims unfair, deceptive -- The Federal Trade Commission has reached a settlement with four companies for allegedly claiming they could reduce consumers' debts by up to 60 percent. ... (See Debt negotiators)

Compare today's 0 percent balance transfer offers -- Comparison chart shows that 0 percent introductory periods are shorter, fees tougher to dodge. ... (See 0% offers)

Are 0 percent APR balance transfer credit cards doomed? -- Consumers' mailboxes used to be flooded with offers for balance transfer credit cards with lengthy introductory interest periods of 0 percent. Not anymore. ... (See Vanishing zeros)

Credit card debt up, delinquencies down in Q2, report says -- Americans had more average credit card debt and delinquencies were down slightly during the second quarter of 2008. ... (See Q2 debt report)

Court orders halt to Texas couple's credit repair operations -- The Federal Trade Commission has filed a complaint against a Texas couple for falsely claiming to repair credit records. ... (See Scam)

FTC wins suit against debt management company -- AmeriDebt Inc. and DebtWorks Inc. allegedly scammed consumers by claiming to be nonprofit organizations and keeping money that should have gone to pay off consumers' debts. ... (See Scam victory)

What is debt reaffirmation? -- Reaffirming a loan can be necessary, but too many consumers say debt collectors tricked them into doing it accidentally. ... (See Old debt)

6 bad reasons debtors reaffirm debt -- Emotions, lack of knowledge and even deception can play a role in a debtor's decision to reaffirm a debt. ... (See Old debt)

9 questions to ask before you reaffirm an old debt -- You need facts to decide whether to reaffirm a debt. These questions will ferret them out. ... (See 9 questions)

Identity theft sample letters -- If you've been a victim, this step-by-step guide and set of printable letters can help retrieve your name. ... (See ID letters)

Can credit repair companies ruin your credit score? -- With $23,000 in credit card debt, can a credit repair company erase or reduce that debt legally without hurting your credit score? ... (See Repair)

Pros and cons of using social lending for credit card debt consolidation -- Social lending can be a good choice for consolidating and retiring credit card debt, but has drawbacks ... (See Pros and cons)

How to use social lending to consolidate credit card debt -- Shedding credit card debt is the most common cause that people seek loans on 'social lending' sites such as Prosper. ... (See Debt)

Patience is key to credit score repair -- It takes time and patience for your credit score to rise after you pay off neglected credit card debt, says CreditCards.com columnist Todd Ossenfort. ... (See Raising your credit score)

It's fraud when an ex opens credit cards in your name -- It's theft when an ex uses your Social Security number to open credit cards in your name, and should be reported to the police and credit bureaus. ... (See Fraud)

Unpaid car lease fees can ruin your credit -- When the lease is over, but over-mileage fees remain, don't leave them unpaid or your credit will take a big hit. ... (See Car lease fees)

CreditCards.com 'Taking Charge' survey, part 2: People adapt card use to changed economy -- A new CreditCards.com survey suggests the financially fit are surviving the economic downturn, but others are not. ... (See Coping)

CreditCards.com 'Taking Charge' graphs, part 2: People adapt card use to changed economy -- These graphs show how Americans are adapting to a changed economic landscape. ... (See Card usage)

Cancel that credit card, take the credit score hit -- Yes, canceling a credit card can hurt a credit score, but it's worth it if you're struggling, says The Credit Guy. ... (See Credit score)

Tinsel meets plastic: Top 10 Hollywood credit card movies -- Plastic plays a key role in these films -- and teaches money lessons, too. ... (See Top 10 card movies)

Taking Charge poll: Nearly 3 of 4 Americans favor government regulation of credit cards -- The second annual CreditCards.com 'Taking Charge' survey says Americans mistrust but need credit cards. ... (See 2008 poll)

Hiding credit card debt -- The exact number of men and women who hide credit card debt from a partner isn't known, but anecdotal evidence and interviews with financial planners suggest that the problem is widespread. ... (See Secret debt)

Could you live without credit cards? Here's how some people do -- Forgoing credit cards and leading a cash-only lifestyle today seems as foreign as mailing a handwritten letter: We know some people do it, but it's hard to understand why. ... (See Opting out of credit)

Surprise! Unexpected items can appear on a credit report -- Hoping to keep your credit score up? You’ll not only want to stay current with your credit card bills, mortgage payments and student loans -- you may also need to pay any outstanding library fines. ... (See Credit report)

Fed leaves rates unchanged; card rates to stay put -- The Federal Reserve, as expected, left a key interest rate unchanged. ... (See FOMC)

What to do when a family member forges credit card applications in your name -- When a family member forges your name on credit card applications, you have two choices: Pay the bill or prosecute, says Maturing Loans columnist Alan Klayman. ... (See Family forger)

Authorized user 'piggybacking' for better credit score given reprieve by FICO -- A controversial score-raising technique that had been slated for phase-out gets new life. ... (See Authorized user)

Steps to take to repair your credit -- When repairing your credit score, it's best to just start making payments on bad debt rather than trying to negotiate the balance down, says Todd Ossenfort, 'The Credit Guy.' ... (See Credit score)

Lending crisis leads to cutting credit limits, hurting consumers' scores -- Cowed by the lending crisis, card issuers are quick to cut credit limits, an act that lowers the ratio of used to available credit, which hurts credit scores. ... (See Card limits)

What to do if a credit card issuer cuts your credit limit -- You have alternatives to regain your limit -- and a higher credit score. ... (See Credit limit)

How one spouse's good credit score can boost a poor credit score -- There are ways your good credit score can boost your spouse's poor credit score, but make sure you both set up solid financial goals first and don't stray from the plan, says To Her Credit columnist Sally Herigstad. ... (See Credit score)

When is a debt too old to go into collection? -- Saddled with an 8-year-old credit card debt, a senior citizen living on just Social Security wants to know what her rights are. ... (See Old debt)

Proposed credit card rule changes draw massive public comment -- Consumers have turned out in force to support proposed Fed rules reining in the practices of credit card issuers. ... (See Credit card rules)

After creating a debt management plan, stick to it -- CreditCards.com columnist Todd Ossenfort strongly recommends that once you're in credit counseling, stick to the goals set up in a debt management plan and avoid temptation to get into more debt ... (See Debt management plan)

Is selling your house to pay down debt a good idea? -- A reader who has $75,000 in credit card debt wants to know if selling her house to pay off debt is a good idea. ... (See Credit card debt)

12 debt questions to ask before getting married -- Before you say, "I do," you should get to know each other's financial health, and nothing says it better than your credit report. Here are 12 questions to ask your betrothed. ... (See Debt questions)

Who's responsible for a deceased spouse's card debt? -- When a spouse dies, credit card debt may or may not be passed along to a widow. ... (See Credit card debt and death)

Don't say 'I do" to bad credit: Navigating financial waters before you say 'I do' -- Financial mismanagement tops the list of reasons why couples seek divorces, so check out your partner’s creditworthiness before tying the knot ... (See Wedding)

Five-year-old credit card debt has debt collectors calling -- With a job loss and 5-year-old credit card debt and only Social Security income, a reader needs a lot of help -- starting with knowing her rights, says Maturing Loans columnist Alan Klayman. ... (See Old debt)

Credit checks for job applicants become more common -- Increasingly, job hunters are required to allow credit checks during the application process. It's legal, but the applicant has rights, too. ... (See Employment credit checks)

Credit repair good guys: How to find legitimate reselling and rescoring firms -- Credit repair firms say they can boost your credit score, but it's credit resellers who do the job for less hype, less money and less mystery. ... (See Credit resellers)

Evils of 'fee harvesting' credit cards known for a long time -- Consumers should beware of cards that charge upfront fees and carry low limits. ... (See Fee harvesting credit cards)

Tips for choosing fee harvesting credit cards -- People with bad credit may have few options for getting a credit card. Experts advise doing a lot of research before signing up for fee harvesting credit cards. ... (See Fee harvesting credit cards)

5 sneaky credit card tricks -- and how to beat the bank -- Just like Three-Card Monte, these tricks can clean out your wallet faster than you can pick a card, any card. ... (See Magic tricks)

Consumers could see refunds from $200 million for 'fee harvesting' credit cards -- Federal regulators are seeking $200 million in restitution for consumers from a major credit card marketer and two banks for how they marketed and issued subprime credit cards. ... (See Fee harvesting credit cards)

9 tips for dividing credit card debt -- Got credit card debt? Going through a divorce? These steps will help you cope -- and not get stuck with your ex's tab. ... (See Debt and divorce)

Free credit report and notice of potential interest rate hikes could be required in proposed new rules -- New proposed rules would require credit card issuers to send notices and provide free credit reports when consumers are subject to interest rate hikes based on credit reports. ... (See Credit card APRs)

Top 10 ways students ruin their credit -- College can be a great time to enjoy independence and build a foundation for the future, or an opportunity to begin their careers with unnecessary credit card debt. ... (See Student credit)

Questions to ask to check out your credit counselor's credentials -- Before you hire a credit counselor, make sure you check out their credentials. ... (See Credit counseling)

Two years behind on credit card payments -- How do you even begin to pay back credit card debt that is two years old? ... (See Credit card debt)

Credit card etiquette: How to politely win credit disputes -- Etiquette experts say that when credit disputes and problems arise, don't reach out and crush someone. Win with courtesy. ... (See Credit card etiquette)

Self control and credit cards -- Don't shun credit because you've had trouble with overspending in the past. A strategy of taking on credit in small doses is better for you, says Sally Herigstad. ... (See Credit card management)

Credit issuers becoming less willing to cut deals with debtors -- Credit counseling agencies could once negotiate lower interest rates on behalf of debt-ridden clients. But credit card issuers are no longer willing to be as forgiving. ... (See Credit card APRs)

What happens to credit card debt after death -- When someone dies with credit card debt, state laws and the original contract terms dictate who owes, and what must be paid ... (See Debt and death)

How to handle collection calls for a dead person's debt -- After a death, creditors may come calling. Here's a checklist what to ask, say ... (See Handling debt collection calls for a deceased relative or friend)

To co-sign or not to co-sign -- A mother wants to help her daughter buy a house, but due to the daughter's bad credit, will have to co-sign the loan. 'To Her Credit' columnist Sally Herigstad weighs the benefits and the risks of co-signing on someone else's loan. ... (See Joint credit)

Understanding how credit scores work -- Find out all the different elements that are considered when your credit score is compiled. ... (See Credit scores)

Establishing credit after divorce -- A stay-at-home mom who finds herself divorced with no credit of her own gets a path to her own credit history from 'To Her Credit' columnist Sally Herigstad. ... (See New credit)

Improving credit to refinance a truck or auto loan -- Steps to take to build a strong credit score. ... (See Rebuilding a credit score)

Deep in debt? You may be able to cut a better settlement deal -- A recent drop in prices that debt buyers pay for bad credit card debts may give consumers negotiating settlements more room to negotiate. ... (See Debt settlement)

While paying off debt, learn investing, says 'To Her Credit' columnist Sally Herigstad -- If put off investing, you may get bogged down in trying to pay off your debts and never be able to start your portfolio. ... (See Saving for retirement)

Trying to thwart recession, Fed cuts rates by 0.75% -- The Federal Reserve, as expected, slashed a key interest rate, but whether that cut will be passed along to individual cardholders depends on the bank, the card agreement and the credit standing of the consumer. ... (See FOMC)

1099-C surprise: Canceled debt often taxable as income -- Many consumers aren't aware that forgiven credit card debt may be taxable income, and it shows up on an IRS 1099-C form ... (See 1099-C)

Consider all options before filing for bankruptcy, says The Credit Guy -- The reason that bankruptcy is recommended only as a last resort is because of the personal and financial toll a bankruptcy has on a person or family, The Credit Guy advises a reader. ... (See Bankruptcy)

Car's too small, loan's upside down -- A woman who needs a bigger car but who is upside down on her car loan should focus on paying down the debt before looking at bigger vehicles, says The Credit Guy. ... (more)

Q&A: Credit counselor urges consumer education -- Too few people know about or talk about debt, says the head of one of the major counseling accrediting agencies. ... (more)

Consumer credit woes mean boom in debt collection -- If you've never been contacted by a debt collector before, chances are growing you will. Collection activity has increased sharply as the economy swoons, and it's more important than ever for consumers to know their rights. ... (more)

Best to skip most 'skip-a-payment' offers -- Offers by credit card issuers to skip a monthly payment can seem like a godsend, but if cardholders think such payment holidays are a free ride, they'd better think again. ... (more)

Keeping up credit while in jail may not be possible -- It's noble to want to help a jailed friend keep up his credit score while serving time, but unless you want to pay his bills, some things just aren't possible, says The Credit Guy. ... (more)

Credit card balance transfers -- This series of articles will help you figure out the best way to transfer and consolidate the balance of your debt. ... (See Guide to balance transfers)

Dad co-signed, I messed up his credit. Now what? -- You ruined Dad's credit score by running up a big debt on a card he co-signed for you, but no, you didn't cost him his house, The Credit Guy advises a reader. ... (more)

CreditCards.com poll results: Credit and health care costs -- A CreditCards.com poll finds a majority of Americans realize that inability to pay their share of health care costs has the potential to wipe them out financially. ... (more)

15 tips for paying high medical bills -- Savvy consumers should comparison shop for payment options when paying for medical expenses. Here are some helpful tips to cope with high medical bills. ... (more)

Comparing health care credit options -- Credit card issuers are offering a growing number of options for financing medical expenses. Use this table to compare and find the best deal. ... (more)

Pay off credit card debt or declare bankruptcy? -- It's painful, but a reader who took $13,000 in credit card cash advances and lost it to an Internet scam needs to pay the money back, says The Credit Guy. ... (more)

Q&A: Pawn off $10,000 credit card debt on son? No way! -- The Credit Guy, who answers readers' questions for CreditCards.com, thinks this parent can pay off the delinquent bill. ... (more)

Holiday credit card debt solutions -- Climbing out of holiday debt isn't easy, but it has to be done. Here's how to assess the damage and get a plan together. ... (See Regret)

Cure the debt hangover, shed credit card debt -- This set of articles will help you understand why you keep finding yourself in holiday debt, how to get out of this mess and how to prevent it from happening again next year. ... (more)

Expert Q&A: Budget for debt, but not too tightly -- A recent college graduate saddled with debt needs a spending and paydown plan, but it's bound to fail unless it includes some fun, says The Credit Guy. ... (more)

Disclosures would increase on subprime credit card fees -- Subprime cards carry upfront fees that the Federal Reserve board contends are not clearly disclosed to customers. ... (more)

Regulation Z proposed changes for minimum payments -- Credit card companies and credit issuers would have to tell account holders how long it would take to repay loans if they make minimum payments. ... (more)

Regulation Z amendments would require changes in credit card terms -- Regulation Z amendments would require changes in credit card terms to be displayed in a table for easy reading. ... (more)

Rules for credit card periodic statement disclosures -- Under proposed federal rule changes, monthly credit card statements would include tables to clearly disclose fees, interest, purchases and other details. ... (more)

Credit card reform: The fine print of proposed changes to Regulation Z -- Regulation Z requires creditors to disclose all costs and terms before a new credit card's first use. However, according to the board, "Currently, there are few ... (more)

Regulation Z rules proposed for credit card fee disclosures -- Credit card companies would have to clearly disclose fees charged to credit cardholders. ... (more)

Regulation Z would require credit card APR disclosure rules -- Regulation Z would require credit card companies to clearly disclose APRs. ... (more)

Regulation amendments propose fixed rate credit cards -- Fixed credit card rates would actually be fixed under Regulation Z amendments. ... (more)

Reg Z proposes credit card notice of term changes to 45 days -- Changes in terms of credit card contracts would need 45 days' advance notice. ... (more)

'Regulation Z' overhaul to change credit card fine print rules -- The Federal Reserve Board has proposed the most sweeping changes in nearly 30 years to credit card disclosure rules, known as Regulation Z. ... (more)

Regulation Z: Feds move to change credit card rules -- The Federal Reserve Board is likely to decide on final credit card disclosure rules in 2008. ... (more)

How the public feels about Regulation Z proposed changes to credit card disclosure rules -- Comments from consumers, credit grantors, payment processors and others on proposed changes to credit card disclosure rules ... (more)

Ask The Credit Guy: Should I do credit rehab myself? -- Credit counselor Todd Ossenfort, aka The Credit Guy, answers a reader's question about whether it's wise to embark on do-it-yourself credit repair. ... (more)

The short, unhappy life of a credit card -- On average, a card lasts must three years before delamination, degaussing or (ulp!) scissors, so CreditCards.com asked one credit card to reminisce about its short unhappy life. ... (more)

Anatomy of a credit card -- Ever wonder what all those numbers mean, or what's on that black stripe? Find out here. ... (more)

Feds propose new right for consumers in credit disputes -- It will become a bit easier for consumers to dispute changes in their credit reports directly with banks or companies, according to a newly published federal regulation. ... (more)

8 ways to compare credit cards -- Compare credit cards with ease and use the information to get the best deal. ... (more)

Disaster preparedness: Using credit cards wisely after catastrophes -- These nine questions and answers will help you use credit and credit cards wisely after a catastrophe ... (See Financial FAQs)

11 steps to help older debtors get out of credit card debt -- Experts list 11 ways for middle-age adults to get finances in order and pay off credit card debt. ... (more)

Older Americans' credit card debt rising -- Bankruptcy filings up among older credit card users, but experts offer quick ways to rein in debt. ... (more)

Establishing credit for your children -- The demise of so-called 'piggybacking' has closed one avenue to getting kids a credit head start, but there are others. ... (more)

Bill Pay Priorities: Mortgage payment takes precedence over card payment -- The majority of homeowners will make house payments even if it affects other bills. Learn why at CreditCards.com. ... (more)

9 ways to avoid the subprime spillover problems -- The tightening of credit in the mortgage world has had limited effects so far among credit card issuers, but there are ways to make sure it won't hit you at all, experts say. ... (more)

Subprime mortgage mess eludes credit cardholders, so far -- The credit tightening caused by the subprime mortgage meltdown has so far only singed credit cardholders. ... (more)

Credit card offers continue even after bankruptcy -- It used to be difficult to get credit card offers after bankruptcy, but it has changed. ... (more)

4 ways to re-establish credit after bankruptcy -- Most responsible consumers who go through bankruptcy hope to borrow money again at reasonable rates. It can be done. Here's how. ... (more)

Fair Isaac to stop recognizing authorized user accounts -- FICO score developer Fair Isaac plans to introduce a new credit scoring model that does not recognize credit card accounts for authorized users. ... (more)

Defaulting on student loans: Advice from CreditCards.com -- Defaulting on a student loan can have a number of negative consequences, including leaving the borrower with bad credit. ... (more)

Bank Loans and Credit Card Debt - CreditCards.com -- Consumers may be focusing their repayments on credit cards instead of bank loans or mortgages. ... (more)

Credit checks are required before iPhone activation -- Consumers wanting the iPhone must submit to credit checks and may be required to pay up to $1,000 security deposit if credit's no good. ... (more)

Credit card issuers may reduce credit limits -- Learn the reasons why an issuer may decide to reduce the credit limit on a consumer's credit card. ... (more)

Canadian gets 11 years for bad credit credit card scam -- A Canadian man was sentenced to 11 years in jail for a scam that fraudulently promised bad credit credit cards to U.S. consumers. ... (more)

Avoiding bad credit when you lose a job -- Unemployed? Take these steps to avoid getting slapped with bad credit after losing a job. ... (more)

Credit cards for bad credit: Improving your credit quality -- Managed responsibly, credit cards for bad credit can help you improve your credit rating. ... (more)

Debt restructuring through a mortgage broker -- Learn how debt restructuring with a mortgage broker can help improve bad credit. ... (more)

The silver lining: new options for clouded credit -- Consumers with bad credit will welcome the relatively recent popularity of prepaid credit cards and secured credit cards. ... (more)

What is credit counseling? -- Have bad credit? Learn how credit counseling can help you. ... (more)

'Piggybacking' your way out of bad credit -- Consumers with bad credit can pay to 'piggyback' onto the credit card accounts of others in an effort to boost poor credit scores. ... (more)

Credit scores and who they impact -- Consumers with bad credit should not feel alone, since millions of other Americans also fall into the subprime lending category. ... (more)

Know your rights under the Fair Credit Reporting Act -- The act and its amendments give consumers powerful rights in credit reporting, guaranteeing free access to the credit data and the right to fix errors ... (See Fair Credit Reporting Act)

Missed payments cause credit issues -- Bad credit, as the result of missing a single credit card payment, can end up costing lots of money. ... (more)

Bad credit and divorce -- There's a link between bad credit and divorce. Learn how to avoid the pitfalls. ... (more)

Predatory lending often targets consumers with bad credit or low incomes who may have fewer options when borrowing money -- Predatory lending involves unfair interest rates and fees and often targets consumers with bad credit or low incomes who may have fewer options when borrowing money. ... (more)

Unemployed? Poor credit can leave you jobless -- Poor credit could affect whether you get hired for a job, since many employers look at applicants' credit reports. ... (more)

What to do if you have no credit history -- Struggling with no credit history? Find out who else has no credit at CreditCards.com ... (more)

Credit card comparisons: Lower rates for bad credit -- Credit card comparisons show that bad credit credit cards can have lower interest rates than other cards. ... (more)

Turning bad credit to good credit -- Consumers can go from having no credit to good credit of they follow some basic strategies and always make their payments on time using bad credit credit cards. ... (more)

Secured credit cards offer consumers a low-cost way to rebuild their credit -- Secured credit cards offer borrowers access to a line of credit, even if those borrowers don't have good credit histories. Here's how they work. ... (See Secured cards)

MasterCard Continental Finance Gold Can Build Your Credit Rating -- Bad credit? The Continental Finance Gold MasterCard can help you repair damaged credit or build credit history. ... (more)

Prepaid Credit Card: The All-Access Prepaid Card from Mastercard -- No bank account, credit check, or monthly fee required. Is a prepaid credit card right for you? ... (more)

How corporate credit card can affect personal credit scores -- Do you have a corporate credit card in your name? If not handled right -- by you or your company -- it can affect your credit score. ... (more)

Advance fee credit cards -- Advance-fee credit cards target consumers with bad credit, but charge massive fees, don't rebuilt credit and can't be used like real credit cards. Avoid them. ... (more)

Bad credit history and delinquent credit cards -- Having delinquent credit cards can quickly result in having a bad credit history and other repercussions. ... (more)

Avoid higher credit card interest rates -- Consumers are not powerless when it comes to their credit card's interest rate. Careful complaining can lower the rate; learn how. ... (more)

4 ways to improve your credit score (without going crazy) -- Perfect credit scores are not necessary to get lenders' best rates. ... (more)

The truth about credit reporting -- Learn things you may not know about credit reporting at CreditCards.com. ... (more)

Credit card debt collection and third party agencies -- Learn how credit card debt collection may be aggressively pursued by collection agencies. ... (more)

No Credit Credit Cards - Repair credit after declaring bankruptcy -- Declared bankruptcy? Learn about how to apply for damaged or no credit credit cards. ... (more)

How credit card debts are bought and sold -- How credit card debts are purchased by debt collectors, often resulting in problems for consumers and the debt collectors themselves. ... (more)

Credit card debt information (2006-2007) -- Listing of facts and statistics related to the credit card industry and personal debt. ... (more)

Rebuild your credit with the Eufora Prepaid MasterCard -- Learn about rebuilding credit with a credit card that reports directly to the credit bureau. ... (more)

Improving credit scores: Steps to get your credit back -- Credit repair and how to get back your credit; steps involved in using credit cards to improve your credit report and credit score. ... (more)

Credit Card collection agency: What to do when old debt calls -- Haunted by credit card debt? Learn what the credit card collection agency is looking for. ... (See Old credit card debt)

Universal default: What it is, how to avoid it -- Universal default allows credit card companies to periodically check your credit and increase rates if deemed appropriate. ... (more)

Bad credit credit card applications from Orchard Bank -- Orchard Bank offers credit cards for those with bad or no credit. ... (more)

Credit report: It should be reviewed on a yearly basis -- Learn how pulling your credit report yearly can keep you protected from errors and identity theft. ... (more)

You might have credit card problems if... -- Find out if your credit card debt and problems are bad enough for a financial advisor. ... (more)

Bankrupt and still getting credit card offers? -- Bankrupt and still getting credit card offers; how bankruptcy and damaged credit doesn't always stop credit card solicitations but there are options for appropriate cards from First Premier Bank, HSBC and Eufora MasterCard. ... (more)

Orchard Bank offers credit cards for people with bad credit -- Orchard Bank offer credit cards for bad credit. ... (more)

Secured credit card: Building credibility and getting needed credit -- See why a secured credit card or a prepaid debit card can build your credibility. ... (more)

Credit score repair - It's not too late to clean it up -- Worried about your credit score? Let CreditCards.com teach you how to repair it. ... (more)

Rebuild credit: Credit card can help repair damaged credit -- Advice on repairing credit card debt, including contacting creditors, dealing with debt collectors and debt counselors. ... (more)

0% APR Credit Cards May Help Consumers in Record Debt -- American families are looking to 0% APR credit cards and debt consolidation to reduce costly debt. ... (more)

Bad credit vs. good credit: Their definitions and comparisons -- Learn what bad credit and good credit mean and how they affect your financial future. ... (more)

Bankruptcy law updates close loopholes in repaying debt -- A new bankruptcy law update has closed loopholes that previously left people unaccountable for repaying all debt. ... (See Bankruptcy law provisions)

Eufora prepaid credit card may be a wise option -- Learn how the Eufora prepaid credit card can help consumers improve poor credit. ... (more)

How to compare bad credit credit cards: secured cards not the only choice -- While credit card companies reserve their best rates for those with pristine credit, people with less-than-perfect credit have choices, too. ... (more)

Online credit card applications: FAQ about CreditCards.com and your card application -- If you're wondering whether it's safe or smart to apply for a credit card here at CreditCards.com, it's both. Here are answers to frequently asked questions ... (more)