Get help with credit cards.

Find programs and contact information for various credit card issuers.

Millions of Americans need credit card help as a result of the weak economy. They are struggling each and every month with paying their debts (even the minimum payments) and keeping up with their bills. The good news is that banks and other credit card issuers are more willing than ever to provide help with paying your credit card balance. A Nielsen Report review confirms that around 3 million customers received some type of assistance or credit card modification last year, and the number is expected to increase this year.

The companies and banks are reducing customer’s interest rates, waiving fees, lowering monthly payments, and helping in other ways. More programs are offered than ever before. These companies have decided that they would rather work with the customer as it is in their best interest to do so as well. They would rather get some payments from the customer than see the individual file for bankruptcy, in which case these banks and credit card companies would receive no financial return.

Below you will find resources, information, and services offered by various companies that can provide you with credit card help during these difficult times. Some of the programs offered include the following.

  • Debt management plans involve working with a credit counseling agency that is selected by your bank.
  • Hardship programs is a term used to describe a number of approaches. It can include interest rate reductions, settlement, payment plans, and other tactics.
  • Debt settlement is eliminating a portion of your total outstanding balance.
  • Forbearance includes a temporary suspension of your monthly payments.

Also, read real life examples on how banks and lenders are providing assistance to customers. Many people are receiving help from interest rate reductions on their credit cards, entering into settlements, and more.

Credit Card hardship programs

The primary goal of a credit card hardship program is to help borrowers restructure their debt and avoid a default or bankruptcy filing. An agreement is made between the consumer and the credit card company, and a regularly scheduled payment plan is established. In addition the creditor will often times reduce the interest rate, adjust the minimum payments, waive fees or charges, or provide other types of credit card assistance to the customer.




While every bank and lender has its own criteria for entering into a credit card hardship program, there are some tips and steps to follow that can help. Click here to read more on the steps to follow.

Debt management plans (DMP)

These plans are offered by banks, lenders and credit card companies. They will have you work with dedicated credit counseling agencies to improve your financial condition. In return you will receive a lower interest rate and additional types of credit card help. Get more details on debt management plans.

Debt settlement

This is when a credit card company will agree to reduce or eliminate a portion of the outstanding debt that you currently owe them. They will negotiate a settlement with you so that they can get some money from you, rather than see you default or go bankrupt. Some people decide to try to settle on their own and others will decide to use a company that specializes in offering this service. Find other ways how debt settlement programs can help, and compare debt settlement vs. consolidation.





Credit card forbearance programs

When a credit card company will allow you to stop paying your monthly credit card bills for a short, defined period of time, this is known as forbearance. It can be from anywhere from a few months up to a year. They may adjust your interest rate during this timeframe as well, and possibly even stop accruing the interest expense on your account. There is nothing like a break in your monthly payments from a forbearance program as a way to get credit card help. Find more information on credit card forbearance programs.

Debt consolidation

This a loan product that is offered by banks and credit card companies. While this may not always be the best approach to take as the customer will still owe the entire balance on their account, it can work in certain cases. The loan they provide you with will allow you to pay off all of your current credit card debts. The debt consolidation loan will be at a lower interest rate and therefore save you on your future interest expense and allow you to get out of debt faster. If the rate on the new loan is not lower, then you should not explore this option. Learn more on debt consolidation loans.

Automobile refinancing

While unfortunately it is not as well known, or taken advantage of by consumers, people can refinance their car loans, and potentially save thousands of dollars over the life of the car loan. Many lenders will not charge a fee to apply for their auto loan refinancing products. Read more on car loan refinancing, including which banks and lenders offer the product.




Other important steps to take for credit card help

The information above will direct you to more details on ways to get credit card help from various banks and issuers. However, there are several other steps you can take to get assistance, and other resources to use. Some of the key highlights are below.

  • Credit counseling agencies - They will provide you with financial counseling, negotiate with your creditors, etc. Many of the companies are non-profits so the fees they charge may be reduced. Some low income individuals may even receive free counseling. Learn more.
  • Negotiate your bills and debts - Anytime you are dealing with a credit card company or bank, you will need to negotiate. Learn negotiating tips that can help you get out of debt. Continue.
  • Write a credit card hardship letter - If you send your bank or credit card issuer a hardship letter, this will begin the settlement process. In rare cases the lender may even settle just on the basis of the letter itself. Find examples of credit card hardship letters.
  • Another up and coming solution to credit card problems is using the service of an attorney. Many consumers prefer this option over using a debt settlement firm. An attorney may be able to negotiate  your credit card bills, mediate a solution, or enter in an arbitration plan. Read more.

While the programs referenced above may provide you with help on your credit cards, the most important thing to do is to keep trying. Contact your creditors, counselors, and other companies to see what services they can offer and learn how they can assist you with your final goal of getting out of debt.





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