House Approves Credit Card Reform
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 30, 2009 4:44 PM CDT
Members of the House of Representatives of the 111th Congress.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – The House today approved legislation to protect credit card holders from hidden fees and sudden rate hikes, Reuters reports. Legislators voted overwhelmingly for the Credit Cardholders' Bill of Rights, a measure banks complain will tighten the amount of credit available and make holding a card more expensive. The Senate is expected to pass its own version next, and President Obama hopes to sign the bill in May.

Among other things, the bill would outlaw retroactive rate hikes and the issue of a credit card to anyone under 18, the AP notes. Much of the legislation would not go into effect for a year, except for one provision that requires companies to give customers 45 days' notice before rates go up. That would take effect 90 days after Obama signs the measure.