In April, 2012, I did a Laser Eye Surgery at TLC, Madison, WI. TLC recommended me to use the 24-month no interest financial plan with CareCredit for the $4390 I should pay for my surgery, sounds like a reasonable deal and I did not see any catch. So I did. I applied and got approved. CareCredit set everything up. The only thing I did was to link it to my checking account. Every month, they take out money from my account and today, I was wondering is I had paid off everything so I checked. Guess what I found......
CareCredit did not set up a schedule for me to pay off in 24 months, two years later, that is this April, 2012, they claimed that my "promotional rate" (which I was never informed of) expired. Based on the payment schedule they set up for me, I have paid $2394.85 from April 2010 to April 2012 and owe $2068.97 as of April, 2012. CareCredit then back charged me 24 months for the $2068.97 at the rate of over 25%, calculated on a daily basis. Then starting May, 2012, I are charging $86 extra interest per month. CareCredit automatically change the amount I have paid in the past 2 years, which is $2394.85 to interests that they claimed that I owe them. So now, after two years payment out of my hard working earned money, I still owe CareCredit $4071.
It took me some time to figure out how CareCredit earn their money. They work with laser eye surgery clinic, dental clinic, and animal clinic with a deal. When patients and customers come, those clinic lured them with 24 month no interest payment plan with CareCredit. It is introduced by those clinics, so who would think it might be a fraud? Then CareCredit set up minimum payment so patients thought it is the amount they should pay off so they will be continue paying. What CareCredit does not tell you is that rather than a 24-month payment plan, the minimum is calculated on a 48-month basis, which means, you won't pay off everything after 24 months, and somehow, they think they are entitled to charge 25% rate for the rest of the money by back counting from day 1. So that is why they firmly believed that I owe them over $2000 for the $2000 balance after 24 months.
So here's the catch:
1) I was not told that the minimum monthly payment is based on 48 months not 24 months. They set this up for you so you won't pay off everything after 24 months.
2) I was not told that there is a "promotional rate" for the first 24 months, the clinic people and the CareCredit people that I talked in the phone when I started the account only said 24 months no interest, nobody mentioned this "no interest" is a promotional rate that will only be good for 24 months.
3) I was never told that CareCredit will back counting till day 1 for the balance when the 24 months end. So if you don't pay off everything in 24 months, they assume that the money you owe after 24 months are the amount you owe from day one, and the rate is over 25%.
4) There was never a warning that I will owe over $2000 for a $2000 balance. I asked the customer service why and he said, "because we are not expecting our customers don't pay off everything".
So the customer service at CareCredit firmly said there is nothing they can do and "there is no way to stop accumulating the interest if not paid off". They threatened that this will hurt my credit score and they will sell my case to a debit collective company (you know how horrible they will be). Bravo, CareCredit, you borrowed $4000 to me 2 years ago, after paying for $2000 to you, I still owe you $4000. You certainly made a lot of money but have you thought about that who will borrow money from you? Will rich people care about using you? No! Will dishonest people bother paying you, no! You are hurting individuals who need physical care and honestly pay for what you tell them to pay. By setting up misleading minimum payment amount and back counting interests, you make 50% of profit. I can't believe this kind of business can exist in the U.S. We should start a law suit. I would rather pay lawyers than paying this shameless company. Giving them more money is to encourage them to rip off honest but financially disadvantaged people. Please write to me if you would like to join me. My email is email@example.com
PS: Clinics that work with CareCredit should be gone after as well. I would never know about CareCredit if TLC did not recommended.
Product or Service Mentioned: Carecredit Account.