What can be done?
The Cast: We are a family of four (including very young children) who daily fight the battle to stay afloat financially. My wife and I have found it very difficult to reistablish our credit and regain financial freedom considering our past financial mishaps (during those college years) and our currently increasing debt (cost of living + housing and transportation maintenance + medical bills + etc. = More than we make and a checkbook in the red)
The Bait: My wife recieved a "preapproval" letter for a new "Platinum Card" with a "$10,000 credit limit." The mail carier delivered this ray of sunshine a few weeks prior to Christmas and right on the heals of other similar credit card offers with smaller limits and strict credit requirements. Considering our need for the proverbial "leg-up" financially and laxed lending requirements to aquire credit, we saw nothing but our first step of progress towards our goal of financial freedom.
The Line (Strings or Catch): The only thing required of us to achieve such a monumental boost to our financial resources was our "$37 annual fee by check or money order" for immediate activation. After much discussion, rereading the offer, and sleeping-on-it (remember that a red figure checkbook does not allow for $37 splurges) my wife and I agreed that this was just the offer we needed to get our lives back on track; $37 seemed like a small price to pay to straiten out our lives financially.
The Barded Hook (Deeply Imbedded in the Lips of my Family): Suprise...the "Credicorp Platinum Card Membership" was simply a MEMBERSHIP to a bottom rate catalog order company rather than the jump-start needed in my family's finances, as we had hoped. These days the word membership is used by numerous companies, including major banks and credit card organizations, to evoke the nostalgic emmotions of acceptance and belonging in order to promote good consumer relations; this is the rationality we, as I'm sure countless others, used to decipher the encrypted message behind this offer.
The Catch and Release: Now my family is only out $37 of non-discretionary income (not life threatening), our prideful self-image of non-gullibility (we can get over this one, too), and our elevated sense of hope for the near future (a harder pill to swallow). Like a barb through the lip, this was a painful experience and situation. Luckily, our family is strong, our pride will heal, and we will live to swim the waters of life another day.
That still does not make this scenario ethical, morally right, or just. Are we all simply fish in a shallow pond for wealthy companies to lure and catch at will? It is understood that there is something to be said for the positive affect of thorough research backing decision making. However, is that the responsibility of we consumers to thoroughly educate ourselves to the reputations and on-goings of every company we do business with or are we concumers simply relieving the wealthy businesses of America from their responsibilities to us.
The lack of regard for the consumer, and other human beings for that matter, demonstrated by Credicorp, Inc. is perturbing and disturbing. Is there any recourse for vulnerable consumers to combat this type of manipulation and trickery or has Credicorp, Inc. gotten away with murder, so-to-speak, by covering their legal loopholes with proper terminology?
No matter the outcome of my family's turmoil, these words of advice come to mind for all consumers (and fish): do not allow yourself to be reeled in and remember to always question the appealing bait and examine it for hooks.
U.S.A. Click here to read other Rip Off Reports on CrediCorp CLICK HERE to read about Credit Card Scams... find out how to get your money back. *Rip-off Report Investigation provides valuable information.