Credit card debt can often become overwhelming enough to require the benefits that bankruptcy protection can provide. Michigan consumers may be aware of the warnings about credit cards being the cause of too much debt. However, they may not be aware of the ways credit cards could be used to save money in certain instances, and optimizing the extra benefits of certain cards may help consumers to avoid overwhelming credit card debt.

Consumers who study the specific terms provided by their cards may find that one of the perks sometimes offered is refund protection, whereby certain credit card issuers allow an extended period for returns. Most people have received unwanted gifts, or bought something on the spur of the moment, only to find the item to be unnecessary. Some vendors may refuse to take back such an item due to the length of time since the purchase or lack of a receipt.

The manufacturers of expensive gadgets and electronics may offer costly extended warranties that cover products for a period after the lapse of the standard warranty. There are certain credit cards that offer a warranty for an extra year, allowing the consumer to avoid paying for more expensive manufacturer warranties. One of the worst feelings is having an expensive item stolen or damaged soon after purchase. Credit card providers may offer insurance against such occurrences, but may require police reports as proof.

When an individual buys an expensive item, only to find the product being offered at a reduced price within a short period, he or she may understandably be upset. One of the perks offered on some cards is called price protection. If a consumer provides proof that the price of an item dropped considerably soon after purchase, the credit card issuer may refund the difference.

Even after taking advantage of these perks, it is still possible for credit card debt to spiral out of control. Michigan consumers may want to keep in mind that there are options to help recover from overwhelming debt, including the protection of a bankruptcy filing. Chapter 7 bankruptcy offers the discharge of all unsecured debts, including credit card debt, while protecting the consumer against creditor harassment. Alternatively, in Chapter 13 bankruptcy the court will allow the consumer to continue paying off debts according to a reorganized payment schedule.

Source: money.usnews.com, “4 Credit Card Perks That Protect Your Purchases“, Simon Zhen, April 18, 2014

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