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After 16 Years, A Credit Card Account Gets Closed Without My Knowledge.

Since 1993, when I was still in college, I have had a credit card with a certain company. Right now they call themselves FIA/IBS, but over the years they have been called various things. Well, as I said I have had this card on my credit report for 16 years, making it the longest line of credit I still have had open – until last week when they decided to close my account without even telling me. The card hadn’t been used in about a year, as I only use my Chase Amtrak rewards card now, but I still wanted to keep the card open (due to how long I had had it) and figured I would use it every once in a while to make sure it stayed that way. But FIA/IBS did not see it that way and proceeded to just cancel and close the account…and the only way I found out was because I called to change the address on the card in preparation of my move to Colorado.

When I called the (of course) automated phone tree and entered my credit card number, the robot voice on the other end told me my account was closed. Thinking there must have been a mistake and knowing that I never canceled the card, I waited patiently for 11 minutes until a human came on the line. I asked him about this account and he confirmed that the company closed it a while back due to inactivity. I asked him when they were planning on letting me know this, and he didn’t know if they were ever going to. I was pretty pissed – not because I lost some of my open credit but because I was a customer of theirs for 16 years and they couldn’t even bother contacting me to see if I wanted to keep the card open by using it. No phone call, no email, no letter…nothing. They just decided one day to close the account and ding my credit score a little bit. Thanks FIA/IBS!

cutcreditcards

The moral of the story? You don’t matter – not that you ever did, really. But I did figure that a 16 year relationship with a company mattered enough to warrant a phone call, but I guess I figured wrong. So if you have any open lines of credit that you haven’t used in a while, I would call and ask about them. You don’t want to go to use it and have it be closed on you, do you? I will be sticking with my Chase card (not that they care either, but I have never had any issues with them) for now, and as for FIA/IBS/Whatever you are called, thank you for breaking up with me. I have no interest in being with a company that couldn’t care any less about a 16 year customer.

Photo from Shutterstock


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Comments (13)

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  1. JoeTaxpayer says:

    Bummer. I have an FIA card as well, curious how long it went unused? I’ve been using an alternate card the last 6 months, but don’t want to lose the FIA.

  2. Miranda says:

    That stinks. And I hate that the credit industry has us all over a barrel — even if we are responsible. The sad thing is that a “good” customer isn’t one who uses a card sparingly and pays it off. Nope. For credit card issuers, a good customer is one who carries a balance and can just afford to make the minimum payments for years on end.

  3. Ron says:

    “Right now they call themselves FIA/IBS, but over the years they have been called various things. ”

    Just thinking that isn’t what YOU’RE calling them right now …

    Citibank gave me the shaft by charging me an inactivity fee and an annual fee even though I had been with them about 10 years and had charged upwards of $20,000 at one time. My credit limit was cut last year from $65,000 to $10,000 (credit report zinger) so when they hit me with these new fees — before the new CARD legislation goes into effect — I took the opportunity to give THEM the heave ho.

    I just wonder what kind of business a credit card company could get if they treated people like they themselves want to be treated. I bet they would have more business than they could handle.

  4. Chase closed my card without telling me, and FIA cut my credit limit in half (not that I came anywhere close to either limit). But Capital One recently doubled my limit after 6 years. You’re right, loyalty doesn’t get you anywhere anymore — they just want your money.

  5. David says:

    Funny, Ron – you got that right. 🙂 Citibank is another company that seems to really enjoy screwing people over lately. The govt should have put these new CARD laws into place the day they passed the legislation, not months later, which gave the companies time to do this crap.

  6. David says:

    Yea, it does stink Miranda – pretty soon responsible borrowers might not even get to use credit cards anymore!

  7. Ron says:

    I agree — if it was so important and so good, why wait?

  8. […] Since 1993, when I was still in college, I have had a credit card with a certain company. Right now they call themselves FIA/IBS, but over the years they have been called various things. Well, as I said I have had this card on my credit report for 16 years, making it the longest line of credit I still have had open ““ until last week when they decided to close my account without even telling me. The card hadn’t been used in about a year, as I only use my Chase Amtrak rewards card now, but Source: My Two Dollars RSS Feed […]

  9. You’re right–you don’t matter. Never have, never will. They say the only thing you can do is to use these cards once every few months to prevent this.

    I have had cards closed, I had the limit on one cut from $21K to $5K and other loads of crap.

    As far as I can tell, not a thing I could do about it.

  10. Tim Moon says:

    This happened to my BofA credit card. Not that I really needed or used it but it was nice to know I could use the card if necessary. At least they told me though…I received a letter in the mail.

  11. I made the mistake before of not using a credit card for a long time and they ended up canceling my card without warning too. Pretty sad that they didn’t even bother to get a notice to me first.

  12. Ally says:

    I have had a Bank of America card since I was in college 8 years ago. It was called Clout when I first got it but BOA bought them a year later. Anyways, I had a small paycheck this week and needed some extra money to pay a bill. I decided to take the money out of my credit card. I went to the bank and asked to transfer the money into my account. I was surprised when the bank teller said that the credit card was declined. I called BOA and they told me that the card had been closed. I don’t ever remember being told about it. I don’t use the card very often but I thought I used it enough so they wouldn’t close it. They told me that I could reinstate it but I would need to provide proof of my annual income and whether I rent or own. They would then evaluate my situation before they re-open the card. I’m self employed so I’m pretty sure they wouldn’t re-open it for me. I might try though because this is the only card I have ever had so my credit score will go down if I don’t.

  13. ku says:

    CHASE will shaft you by closing every “free”card without warning–even in constant use for far below credit limits. Even those listed as “open” with a limit if you check the Your Accounts Chase website will have been cancelled with no notice except when merchants decline.

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