Have you ever accidentally missed a credit card payment and ended up with a late fee plus finance charges? If so, you should definitely try calling the card issuer and pleading your case. Unless you’re chronically late, odds are they’ll agree to refund both the late fee and the finance charges. And if not, you’re only out the few minutes that it takes to make the phone call. This actually happened to us recently with our Citi Driver’s Edge MasterCard…
Last month I somehow failed to make the payment on our card. Naturally, we got whacked with a $39 late fee as well as finance charges — wow, that credit card interest sure piles up fast!
I was, of course, really bummed. After all, we’ve never paid a late fee or an interest charge to a credit card company. Was the streak about to end? Not if I had anything to say about it!
I picked up the phone, called up Citi, explained that we’ve never been late on a payment before, and asked them if they could do anything about the fees. The CSR said he’d check and see if he could get it automatically credited back, paused for a few seconds, and then said he’d taken care of it.
Thus, our streak is alive… We’ve still never paid a late fee or interest charge to a credit card company.
53 Responses to “Ask for Credit Card Fees to be Reversed”
Recently happened to us too. Dh had bought some things that his work was supposed to pay for. He gave them the bill to pay and they got it there a day late. Dh called and they reversed the $39 fee. There was no interest b/c it was interest free for 3 months or something like that.
Plus he gave the ladies in the office a talking too and told them not to let that happen again!
I recently had a refused payment (they tried to pull it from a bank account that we closed) and since I don’t always read my wife’s mail and she doesn’t go through it more than once every month or two I didn’t see the notice until the next statement arrived. I called them up, had them remove the old checking account, reactivate my ability to pay online, and asked if they would waive the fee for having a payment attempt refused. It was a $10 charge we had been trying to pay, so we wound up paying a few cents in interest fees, but we got out of the $30 or $40 charge they had stuck us with. This month it got paid off completely and the card is now locked in our safe.
I’ve had a similar experience, though I don’t remember the details. I guess not all credit card companies are the evil, twisted, devils some people would like you to believe, eh? Some of them are staffed by reasonable, understanding human beings. Go figure.
I’ve done this a few times. The last time though, I made the call, got the charge taken off, then I had another ID 10-T error and was late on the next payment! I just payed the late fee on that one.
One caveat: note that for a new credit card with low introductory rates, missing a payment can automatically kick you out of the low rates and into a “normal” rate (i.e. 20%-plus) structure. That may not automatically be reversed if even if the late charge is recinded. You may have to ask about it specifically.
This just happened to me. I had transferred a balance to my wife’s Chase Visa and was paying $50 more than the minimum payment while enjoying 3.9% for the life of the loan. I missed the payment date by 12 hours during the last cycle. The latest bill shows a minimum payment of $70 more than what is was as well as a finance rate of 18.75%.
She called Chase (as I am not on the account) on my behalf and she explained the situation. The CSR kept saying “sorry ma’am” as he claimed there was nothing he could do for her.
I’m now shopping around to transfer the balance to my Citi card and receive 6.9% for 6 months. In the meantime, I’ll also look for another offer for low interest on the life of the loan.
Obviously it’s better not to miss a payment, but we’re not perfect. Like you say, it can’t hurt to call and see if they’ll help you out. Don’t be shy, it may or may not work out, but in the end you haven’t lost anything.
We missed a payment in January (my wife and I both cannot for the life of us remember getting the bill…it’s on a card we don’t use much because our main card denied us as a “fraud protection courtesy” because we spent a lot in December…who knew ppl spent more in December? but I digress). Long story short, they wouldn’t waive the $35. They did give us enough points for a $15 gift card, so as soon as we get that, we’ll be canceling that card. If they want to lose us over $20 I’m more than happy to oblige.
If you call Citi because you were late on a payment their policy is to “forgive” you twice – this was told to me by a rep. However, if you make a late payment after those 2 times they will increase your interest rate probably to 32.24% and they will not even think about lowering your APR for 6 months even if the balance on the card is 0. Also, they will not allow you to transfer any balances to your citibank card. So, don’t think they are being nice to you and that this will not potentially come back to bite you in the butt later on.
I understand you are upset that the card company wouldn’t waive the fee. However, canceling your card may hurt your credit rating. I would just keep the card open with a balance of zero.
I have done this in the past were I got mad that a card wouldn’t understand so I closed the account – this in turn dinged my credit score on various levels. 1. You are potentially closing established credit history. 2. Your amount of debt in accordance to your available credit may increase (that’s bad) etc etc.
I had a bill due on a Saturday and used Bank of America’s transfer program to transfer the funds. BoA charged me a late fee because the transfer didn’t go through till Tuesday – even though the bank’s own website states that transfers from BoA accounts to BoA credit cards are automatic, same-day. The first time I called I got stonewalled. The customer service agent was very unhelpful and said it was their policy to NEVER reverse late fees. I asked to speak to a manager and she refused to transfer me. I hung up on her. I’m rarely rude to CS people, but she was being so unbelievably unhelpful that I couldn’t stop myself.
I called back a few hours later and explained the situation again, quoting their website, and voila…late fee was gone. I was about 10 minutes away from transferring my balance to one of my other cards and cancelling my BoA account altogether because of the way I was treated the first time around. I wish customer service agents
Frustrated over a late fee on a brand new credit card, I did a quick Google search on how to reverse late fees. (I like to know my options!!)
Armed with some tips, I called customer service, spoke clearly and calmly, and told him I wasn’t getting my statement soon enough to make a timely payment. (They’re required to give you 20 days before the end of the billing cycle).
The guy didn’t even ask questions. He simply removed the late fee of $25 and the finance charge of $1.50.
Mom always said, “The worst that can happen is they say ‘no.’”
Yes you can always call to that good men from bank and try to negotiate better conditions! Particularly, old clients can hope to get new features. The best way is to find other credit card offers (that suits your history) and tell it to bank supervisor, Oh don’t lie, please! Be sure they know their competitor’s offers well.
1. To avoid credit card late fees and a possible increase in your interest rate, simply send the minimum payment as soon as you receive your credit card statement. Send a second payment near the due date to pay off the balance.
2. To help avoid paying credit card late fees, keep a calendar with your normal monthly payment dates listed. As your normal payment due date approaches (generally 10 days before), if you haven’t received a statement you should call the credit card company for the payment due and put it in the mail.
I had set up automatic weekly payments with Bank of America and for the first time they didn’t cover the entire monthly minimum (oops). I got a $35 late fee the next day and was really bummed, as it was my first ever (4 years with them).
Anyway, I called 7 days after it happened to ask for a reversal, expecting them to say it was too late for such a thing. The CSR was really nice though and claimed that they can only reverse it completely if it is a bank error (as with comment #13 perhaps?), but she agreed to cut it in half to $17.
I considered threatening to leave but since I called a few days after the fee and she was nice I decided $17 was acceptable. I was, after all, legitimately late on the payment.
Well, I just tried this with my Chase credit card. It used to be a FirstUSA AOL card which used to give me points towards free AOL Dial-up service when I initially got the card back in the mid-1990s. Although I’ve been without AOL for almost a decade now, I’ve kept the card out of convenience.
In the last decade I’ve been late with a payment twice: once in 1998 and once in April 2007. Yes, it was my fault completely — things just got out of hand that month and I missed the payment date. I was slapped with a $39 late fee.
So I tried doing exactly what was stated above. I spoke to a very nice customer service representative named Ravena. I reiterated that, in my past eleven years with the account I’ve had an excellent payment history, and that I’d like to ask if the fee can be waived.
Yes, she was very nice. Even when she declined this, stating that Chase’s policy is “no courtesy waives” unless it was a bank error of some sort.
I then paid off my account in full and requested to close the account. Which she did with a “Yes sir. I understand. I’m sorry that you’re doing so because of this policy.” Again, very nice. I was surprised that they didn’t even attempt to keep me.
Oh well… This was a credit card solely for gasoline purchases and several online transactions. I’ll be shopping around for another card that will do better in valuing me as a customer for the long haul.
Shiny: That’s too bad. The only thing I would’ve done different would have been to ask to speak to her supervisor when she couldn’t help. While that may be their policy, there is almost certainly someone there that has the ability to override it if they wish.
I recently had a late payment on a Chase card. I have two of them. One I just paid off in full at $1629 that I had transferred a balance to with 0% APR and then the card I use for day to day purchases. Well I misplaced the bill and got hit with the $39 late fee. I called and talked to a CSR and she refused to remove the fee. I called back and talked to a second one who looked into it but still refused to do it. So I said calmly, I would like to close both of my accounts out. She transferred me to an account mgr and he looked at what I spend on their cards, saw I wasn’t late but still refused to remove the charge. I told him to close them and that I hope the $39 is worth losing the $8-10k of business from me. He close the one cause it was $0 balance and I would never be using it anyway but right at the end he said as a courtesy I will remove the $39. Even though they removed it, I feel that Chase didn’t value me as a customer after 5 years. I pay my bill off in full each month and have excellent credit. I make them too much money per year for them to give me a hard time so I am going to go with another company. I have had other companies take a late fee off without any hassle.
I just had the same problem with Chase. I have 3 cards with them and have been a very good customer for a long time. I was told by the first customer service lady that removing the fee was not an option on my account. When I asked what that meant, and why it was not an option on my account, she had no answer. I asked to speak to a supervisor so she transfered me back to the main number! The second woman told me it is not their policy to refund the money unless it was their error. I am incredibly frustrated and am considering cancelling the cards. I think Chase is making a big mistake by not providing good customer service. I don’t just mean the refusal to remove the fee, but also, the people themselves were not quite clear on what I was asking and I felt like I was passed off.
I have held a Chase Amazon Visa for 2 years. It has a $500 limit and I only use it for online purchases with Amazon. I pay the balance at the end of each month and have never been late. Last month I went over the limit by $40 and was charged a $39 fee. One two separate attempts talking to a “mangaer” I was denied my request to remove the fee. I conveyed my dissatisfaction and payed the balance of my card and canceled it on the spot. I agree that Chase is making a big mistake with their policy in this area and I will never bank with them again.
Having been in the banking industry for many years, I can offer an explanation as to why some or I should say most banks will not waive fees unless it’s due to banking error. Some will waive it as a one time courtesy if you are worthy of keeping. If you are a high risk customer, don’t bother wasting your time waiting to get through and then requesting for a manager and then threatning to close the account because it is highly likely that they will be more than happy to close it for you. It doesn’t matter if you have been with the bank for 5, 10 or 20 years. It doesn’t matter if you pay in full every month. There is a system behind the scene that will allow or not allow the customer service agent to waive the fees. You are just a number and how much of a risk you are to them. It’s sad in a way that banking is not what it used to be anymore.
i’ve been turned so many times all the credit cards that i have they say i am behind in all my payments i give up on them i trying to fix my credit as we speak but any way is ther an credit card out for someone like me with bad credit and is trying to build her credit back up they also go by your scores why do we hav ecredit scores to beagin with please help me and i donot want an debit card no i donot thank annamrie email@example.com
Got the Advanta credit card bill 2 days after the due date. We’ve had some crazy mail delivery problem in this city. Immediately went online and made payment, then called their rep and explained that mail just arrived. She said she would take care of it, unfortunately, I will have to wait and call back during next billing cycle. When I received next bill, with huge late fee and finance charge, I was reminded to call again. And with another rep, he refused to remove the late/finance charges.
Do you think Advanta is scamming? Providing promotional rate, then send out late statement to collect on fees? I’ve had bills arrive late before and others were nice enough to forgive, but not Advanta. 3.9% promo rate was great deal for consolidating, but it turned out to over $500 in late/finance charge due to late mail arrival.
The Advanta rep also lied to me that they had automatic payment system. I always paid their bills online, and I know for fact they didn’t have automatic payment feature. If they did, I would of used it.
i had scheduled a payment on my chase credit card to be delivered by feb 17 and the transaction didnt take place until the 19th since 17th was a sunday and 18th was presidents day. and they are refusing to reverse the fee. this is something that is not my fault and i am seriously questioning cancling all of my chase cards. but we will see if they will actually give in and realize im right.
I had a late fee of $39 from a Bank of America credit card. I forgot about the bill and was late on payment by 2 days. I called customer service, mentioned I had just paid off the full balance online and was wondering if they could take off the fee. She checked my payment history, saw that this was my first late payment and took care of the fee. She also reinstated my promotional rate. If you have a good payment history with your card, I’d suggest to anyone in a similar situation to take the time to challenge the fee.
I think what Kristine said in her comments is true, “There is a system behind the scene that will allow or not allow the customer service agent to waive the fees. You are just a number and how much of a risk you are to them.”
Iwas accidently late on my Bank of America acct. by 9 hrs. I called to dispute the charge–not because I wasn’t guilty–but based on I had a good record (Never been late) and I was a good customer. I actually had a couple reasons for my tardiness, but the customer service rep didn’t even allow me to get through my “story” before she said it was being reversed…
I was recently late w/ my Chase card pymt. I have excellent credit history, but had major foot surgery and overlooked the pymt. Upon noticing a few days later I made a pymt online. I expected to get a late fee anyway, but could call cust. service and state my case. They WOULD NOT waive $39 fee as a courtesy! I have 3 cards and never been late! I asked for supervisor and she said they don’t do courtesy waives anymore, and she was sorry. A bank error would be the only exception. I said it is unfortunate, and we would both lose because I will transfer my balance and not use any of my Chase cards! She said she understood. WHAT’S WRONG W/ THESE GREEDY A-HOLES, DON’T THEY VALUE THEIR CUSTOMERS?? I won’t close them out because it can have adverse credit score consequences.
I had almost the same experience as the last person. I have been with them for years and have never missed a single payment. For some reason, I didn’t get the bill this month and missed the payment by 2 days. I paid the full amount the moment I realized it, and called to see what they can do for the $39 fee. They were very unhelpful and won’t do anything to adjust the fee. I am quite upset, given the tough economic situation, and being a loyal customer, they just won’t be sympathetic at all, and just take your money on the slightest mistake, in this case, it wasn’t even my fault given the postal office missed the bill. This is by far the most unhelpful customer service I experience with the 6-7 credit companies I used. I am cancelling my card and refuse to be treated like this as a good customer. I would recommend that you avoid their service if you have other options.
I was 5 days late in paying $600 on a Chase Card. I have never been late before. I called “customer service” and they refused to waive the $39 late fee. I told them that I am terminating my banking relationship with Chase. They said ok. I will no longer do business with Chase. They are arrogant and greedy.
One time I purchased items using my debit card worth more than I had in my checking account several times. The bank charged overdraft fees for each transaction (I think for 6 total) adding up to over $200. I gave them a call, and they waived all the fees. So if you just be courteous, they will try to help you. I won’t name the bank because I know ppl will abuse the system. That was the only time I ever got charged fees.
This typically works in the situation where you have usually payed all of your bills in full. If someone misses their payments often, good luck on getting them to waive the fee. If you do pay on time, you have leveraging power, and can always threaten to go elsewhere if they don’t waive the fee. Just remember to be nice when you give them the call =).
I always pay all my credit cards on time and I was able to ask for a waiver for one time when payment did not arrive on time on one of my cards.
I have a new Chase card that I open because I want to get the discount on Amazon.Com. I just used it twice and send the first payment on time. Unfortunately, the second payment was late and I was asking for a waiver as I have other Chase card accounts with good standing. They won’t waive the late fee…I cited that other credit card issuers has a courtesy waiver for one time only late fees but the supervisor told me that they only waive fee when there is a bank error.
I think because of the economy, they are changing their policies regarding late fee waivers.
I am so upset with the late fee (hate it!!!) that I paid my bill in full and close the account.
For those having problems with Chase or i guess any CC company, you need to threaten to cancel the card and if they still don’t waive it, follow through. Mae- did you tell the supervisor, you are going to cancel the account? They might have waived it depending whether their goal is to keep customers. When I racked up $200 of fees in BoA a few years back, I was ready to cancel my checking account if they didn’t waive it, but at that time I didn’t even have to threaten canceling.
Also a few months back I forgot payment on my Citi card and I called them up and they waived it no questions asked.
Another tip, is to try calling again, and maybe a different agent will waive the charges.
Hello, well same as all the others. We sent pmt on 12/29. They posted to 1/1 and nailed me with $39 and $7 in finance charges for a $215 bill. They don’t seem to have any problems losing me, which they will. Going back to Discover.
Received Bank of America bill and was shocked to see late fee and that my payment was not received. When I researched I found that I did not get the bill last month and never made payment. I called and got disconnected, called back and human rep disconnected me when I explained situation, but I remained calm and called back and explained again. The rep asked the reason and immediately reversed the charges. Considering I’ve only had nightmares with Bank of America in the past, they pleasantly surprised me today. Maybe it was the fact that I have never paid late in 10 years or that I was just really nice. Whatever the reason I was very glad for their assistance.
Thanks guys for your help. I just spoke with my credit card from Bank of America and issue was resolved. I was 4 days late on my payment because I have been so busy with school that the statement was under my folders. Long story short.. I just called them and she asked what my reason was for being late and resolved the issue as I was telling her my situation since I haven’t been late on payments since i been with them.
We have been very loyal Discover Card holders for 20+ years and whenever we have asked for them to reverse a late fee, they have been more than willing. Not that it happens often, but at times things happen.
We also carry a VISA card from Barclay (LL Bean Visa), as not all establishments take Discover. We were late this month by 5 days (thought I posted an online payment and it didn’t go through).. and they refused! Stated that it was late, and they will not waive the fee. We alway pay in full and on time.
I think there are certainl credit card companies that are more ‘forgiving’ than others. We also hav CitiCard, and they are easy to work with as well. Discover has fantastic customer service!!
I will be only using my Visa(Barclay) card in the future for LL Bean purchases. Eventually these credit card companies will get the message!
I have credit cards to pay for my books and tuition (Don’t qualify for federal aid and can’t get approved for loans so unfortunately, I have to rely on credit cards). I had my first late fee for a Bank of America card and also some old over limit fees due to finance charges from Amazon Chase. Tried calling Chase to see what they would help me out with and the rep was very stern and clear on addressing, “No, I will not remove any of your fees”. I think I should have read the comments on here beforehand as it seems to be set that Chase isn’t lenient on reversing fees.
Having my confidence shattered, I attempted to call Bank of America and they were very quick and easy on reversing my fee. I didn’t even ask for a reversal. I just stated that I forgot about my payment by one day and said that I was charged a fee and the rep automatically said that it would be reversed within two days. I’ve had pretty good experiences with my checking account but I wasn’t sure about their credit department. I’m happy with BOA.
I’m looking forward to the day that I pay off my Amazon card and will for sure not work with Chase again.
Wife became terminal. Borrowed $10,000. Before it was over (a few months) the CC bank had jacked the interest rate to 50% and taken $600. I paid them off, and closed the account. The way I see it is, basically, the whole fees and interest rates business is wrong. People should not be further victimized by the banks when tragedies (even small ones like late payments) happen. The banks should be made to suck up the inconveniences with us. Late fees should have a minimum 10 day window before they can be applied, and no late fees should be applied if payment is made in the same month the bill is due. The banks are getting a free ride in my opinion, and they don’t deserve it.
I had the same thing happen on a Chase account. The payment was received a day late which means it was obviously in the mail. Called twice to plead my case of having the account for nearly 20 years and never having a late payment before and requesting the $39 fee be waived. Both said â€œthere nothing I can doâ€. I even requested to speak to a supervisor and was told, â€œthere is nothing they will do eitherâ€. I made the point that if I was six months behind, they would find all kinds of ways to help me but because I pay my bills on time (for 20 years) â€œthere is nothing they can doâ€. Perhaps there was nothing they could do but there is something I can do. I immediately transferred the balance to another card and cut up my Chase card. After 19 years, I have used that account for the last time.
For Chase Credit card late fee & interest charge waivers, my sister always gets them via e-mail request without breaking a sweat ever since Indian service reps started answering the e-mails in 2011. Prior to that, she has to make several LONGGGGG calls just to get a $25 LATE FEE waiver. Now she even gets interest charge waivers along with the late fee without asking for it.
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