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Senate close to vote on CARD Act fix
WASHINGTON (10/22/09)—Just a week after House members approved H.R. 3606, the CARD Act Technical Corrections Act, by voice vote, their colleagues in the Senate appear poised to take up that bill. After the House vote, Credit Union National Association (CUNA) President/CEO Dan Mica urged quick Senate action, saying it was needed urgently to “save credit unions and their consumer members both money and peace of mind." CUNA, the leagues, and credit unions have worked closely for weeks with lawmakers and their staffs to explain credit union concerns about a 21-day late notice requirement found in section 601 of the Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure (CARD) Act. H.R. 3606, if passed by the Senate and signed into law by the President, will clarify that the 21-day applies only to credit card accounts and not to all open-end credit. CUNA has warned lawmakers that the CARD Act, as currently written, would prevent credit unions from granting biweekly payment plans to their members, from sending members consolidated billing statements, and would force them to change payment due dates for members that had previously chosen due dates based on their specific financial circumstance. The situation is particularly problematic for Home Equity Lines of Credit (HELOC) because the due date of a HELOC is often a contractual term. CUNA has maintained that the 21-day provision was originally intended to cover only credit card accounts and was inadvertently changed during the legislative process. A Senate vote H.R. 3606 could come this week.
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