When Congress passed the Credit Cardholders Bill of Rights yesterday we breathed a sigh of relief for the scores of entrepreneurs who live and die by their small business credit cards. That is until we found out that the bill leaves them out:
“The House just passed the Credit Cardholders Bill of Rights, which restricts some aggressive tactics by credit card companies, like arbitrary rate changes, applying payments in a way that maximizes interest charges, and double-cycle billing,” reports BusinessWeek. “But the bill as written doesn’t apply to small business credit cards, even though such cards are personally guaranteed and function exactly the same way consumer credit cards do. An amendment that would have made this change explicitly apply to cards issued to businesses with fewer than 500 employees did not make it out of committee yesterday.”
That’s naturally a blow to some of the foundering entrepreneurs we’ve written about who are struggling to pay their small business credit card bills. Here’s hoping that the Senate, who will vote on the bill next, actually sneaks in something for small business. Because, as Business Week notes, if they don’t, that means small business will be left open to the whims of credit card companies, something six-pack Joe will be protected from. Stay tuned.