The Ministry of Economy, Industry and Commerce (MEIC), through the Directorate of Consumer Support, conducted an analysis of 12 credit-card, issuing banks that apply special programs, specifically on installments purchase without interest or preferential rates. In all cases, authorities found breaches that are affecting consumers’ rights. Some detected breaches are the following: no clear information, the financial fees (commissions, administrative fees) are not clear, it is known whether the consumer has been able to understand and accept the conditions of these lines of credit before taking them, the penalties that affect this type of credit are not reported due to delays in payment, there is not a clear procedure to make advance payments.
Among the documents analyzed, there are the regulations of financial institutions that explain these special programs, statements, contracts and credit card advertising.
The issuing banks included in the study are Bancrédito, BCT, Banco de Costa Rica, CrediSimán, Credix, Credomatic, Davivienda, Lafise, Banco Nacional, NovaScotia, Scotiabank and Promérica.
In order to change the situation, a series of precautions have been taken to the entities, where many of them have been correcting these problems or have committed to do so in the short term. However, the MEIC will guarantee that adequate information is provided.