4 Things to Know If Your Credit Card Was Declined

Paying your bill at a restaurant and hearing that your credit card has been declined can be a deflating experience. Your best bet is to take a deep breath and address the situation.

There are a number of reasons why your credit card was declined, such as charging too much or not making payments. Whatever the case may be, there are a few things you should keep in mind if this has happened to you:

Find out the reason
There are numerous reasons why your credit card account has been cut off. It can be because there was an international purchase, you've reached your credit limit, or your credit provider believes there has been illegal activity on the card. If any of these cases happened, your account will be suspended.

If your card has been declined, your provider needs to tell you why. Your credit provider doesn't have to give you any warning beforehand, unfortunately, but they do need to offer you an explanation. They may tell you your purchasing trends have changed – perhaps you have made expensive purchases out of state – or that you have been delinquent on your payments. Understanding the reasons why your card was declined can help you asses your situation and guide you in avoiding this situation in the future.

Paying a suspended account
With a suspended account, you will have your charging privileges revoked, but you still need to pay off your balance and make minimum payments. A common misconception is that you need to pay off the entire account before getting your card reactivated, but that is not true. Your credit provider will work with you to get your payments taken care of in a timely fashion. It is important to keep making these payments because your credit score will be affected if any are missed. There are a few options when it comes to making payments on a suspended account. You can either double your minimum payments or be given five years to pay off the entire balance. Discuss the best route for you to take with your credit provider

Interest charges
Although the account is suspended, the interest charges will still be there. A good thing to know during this time is that your credit provider cannot raise your interest on a suspended account. The Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility, and Disclosure Act states that providers can only raise the interest if the borrower has missed two consecutive payments or if the introductory rate has expired.

Appealing the suspended account
If you feel that the reason your card was declined was not your doing, you have the option of appealing. The appeal process will require sufficient evidence because you will be turned away if you don't have any concrete information to back up your claim.

If the suspension is your fault because you have continuously missed payments or have been running up your limit, then there is very little chance your appeal will go through.