If you’ve missed a credit card payment, your head is probably spinning with all the questions and concerns running through it. What will happen to my credit score? Will my creditors sue? Will I go to jail? Relax. While missing a payment is not ideal, it’s not the end of the world. In this blog post, we’ll discuss what happens with unpaid credit cards and what you can do to get back on track.
What Are The Consequences of A Missed Payment?
If you have a track record of not paying, you may not be let off the hook easily. One of the most immediate consequences of missing a credit card payment is that your credit score will take a hit. Depending on how late the payment is, your score could drop anywhere from 50 to 100 points. This can make it difficult to get approved for new lines of credit. Additionally, your credit issuer will charge a late fee. These fees can range anywhere from $25 to $35 and will only add to your balances owed.
Other consequences include higher interest rates and credit limit decreases. More seriously, if you miss two or more payments in a row, your account will likely be classified as delinquent, which means that your creditors could start taking legal action against you. While this is unlikely to result in jail time, creditors can garnish your wages or seize your assets.
What’s The First Step After A Missed Payment?
The first thing you should do is assess the situation and figure out why it happened. Was it an honest mistake? Did something come up that prevented you from being able to make the payment? Once you know what happened, you can take steps to ensure that it doesn’t happen again. If it was a simple mistake, call the credit issuer. Depending on the type of account, they can wave late fees and penalties for you. Sometimes they may even delete late payment reports on your credit score.
How Can You Prevent A Missed Payment?
Going forward, make sure to set up automatic payments or reminders so that you don’t miss another payment. Be sure to keep an eye on your account balance and make sure you have enough money to cover your bills each month. Finally, if something comes up that prevents you from being able to make a payment, contact your credit card issuer as soon as possible to let them know what’s going on. By taking these simple steps, you can avoid the consequences of missing a credit card payment.
Do you have any questions about what happens when you miss a credit card payment? Leave us a comment below and we’ll be happy to help!
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Shatel Huntley has a Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from Georgia State University. In her spare time, she works with special needs adults and travels the world. Her interests include traveling to off the beaten path destinations, shopping, couponing, and saving.