Finance Quick Answers
I received an application in the mail for a credit card which said I was "Pre-approved." However, when I sent in the application, I was rejected. How could that be?
Buried in the fine print of your credit card application, agreements, and correspondence from the card company are provisions that can cost you plenty. Here is one trap to look for in tiny type. Pre-approved cards often come with hidden catches, don’t assume you’ll automatically get the card. Under a new law recently passed by congress, card issuers can now reject pre-approved applications based on credit criteria. Reasons can include your bill paying record, and how short a period of time you’ve lived at your current address. If you don’t meet the criteria for the promoted lower rate, the issuer may reject your application or send you a card with less attractive terms. Although the fine print warns you that your credit will be reviewed, most people have no idea that additional credit factors will be considered before the card is issued.
Source: Bottom Line Personal - Oct 15, 1997
Sandra McKinnon, Consumer & Family Economics Specialist, University of Missouri Extension
Cynthia E. Crawford, Ph.D., Consumer & Family Economics Specialist, University of Missouri Extension
Last update: Monday, July 28, 2008