Mon 21 Aug 2006
I hope the credit card companies are happy.
After almost a year under the so-called bankruptcy reform that Congress enacted at their behest, the law has proved to be what it appeared: a love letter to lenders.Pitched as consumer protection, it was passed after eight years of political arm-twisting by credit card issuers who didn’t want to lose fees from indebted customers when they filed for bankruptcy. You may have noticed that their concern about lending to people who can’t pay hasn’t stopped them from stuffing your mailbox with 25 offers a week for easy credit.
“All it’s done is make it more time-consuming and more complicated and, for debtors, more expensive,” says Randy Williams, a bankruptcy lawyer with Thompson & Knight in Houston. “Most people don’t believe that this accomplished anything that it set out to do.”
It hasn’t lived up to the claims of Edward Yingling, president of the American Bankers Association, who said after it was enacted that it “strikes just the right balance” and would ensure the bankruptcy system remains “sympathetic and fair.”
Other local activists have been able to excuse Price’s support for a bill that callously punishes folks whose only crime is falling prey to a asset-sapping serious illness.
Me? I’d like a representative that will consistently stand up for those in greatest need.
Tip via the excellent local academic ‘blog CreditSlips.