Judge rules to stop credit card ‘warning’

By Jessica Brice, The Associated Press
Saturday June 29, 2002

SACRAMENTO — A federal judge Friday temporarily blocked the implementation of a law that would require the nation’s biggest bankers to include credit card payment “warnings” in monthly customer statements. 

The ruling, handed down by U.S. District Judge Frank C. Damrell, came three days before the law was set to go into effect. 

A group of high-powered financial corporations, including Chase Manhattan Bank USA, CitiBank and MNBA America Bank, filed a lawsuit a month ago to stop the law, which would require the companies to warn customers about how long it takes to pay off credit card balances by just making the minimum monthly payment. 

The ruling came as a shock to many consumer advocate groups, which said the credit card companies never raised any concerns before, even though they actively participated in designing the legislation. 

“We’re disappointed,” said Hallye Jordan, spokeswoman for Attorney General Bill Lockyer, named as a co-defendant in the case with the state Department of Consumer Affairs.