Care Credit / Billing scam!
I had dental implants done, with treatment starting in September 2007. The dentist office offered 0% financing through GE Money (Care Credit). I set up a recurring payment through my Online Banking service to pay the balance in 12 equal installments on the 5th day of each month (3 days prior to the due date of the original invoice). Within 3 months, I was being charged a "late fee" of $39 per month, even though my payment was sent on the 5th day of each month, for well above the minimum payment requested. When I finally noticed the late fee charges, I contacted customer services and was told that the fees could not be waived since I had 3 consecutive late payments. When I asked how the payments could be late, when the 0% financing only required me to pay in full by Sept of 2008, the response was that I had to make a minimum payment within the billing cycle, which was actually 24-days, not a full month, which resulted in my "late" payments.
This is a deliberate tactic to scam consumers hoping they will be late so they can charge extra fees. Obviously, I should have read their boilerplate on the back of the invoice, rather than listen to my dental office personnel.
FYI: My dental office has confirmed their understanding that the credit plan does not require set payments, only that payment is made in full by the end of the term. So, there is a breakdown somewhere. I will never recommend use of this credit plan to anyone, or utilize it for myself again. I would prefer to pay in full or pay interest rather than deal with bad-faith financial institutions like this one!
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