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We're the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), a U.S. government agency that makes sure banks, lenders, and other financial companies treat you fairly.

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I applied for a credit card with one set of terms, but was turned down and offered the chance to apply for a different card with different terms. What is the credit card company required to do in this situation?

Answer:

If you were turned down for one card and offered a different card with different terms that you do not expressly accept, the credit card company has to tell you the reasons it denied your application. In addition, the card company generally is required to provide you the name, address, and telephone number of the credit reporting company that provided the credit report the card issuer used to make its decision. 

If the credit card company used a credit score to make its decision, it also must provide you with the credit score it used. The company also has to provide you with information to help you understand the credit score, including the key factors that adversely affected your credit score. If the credit card company based its decision on information contained in your credit report, the card company also is required to provide you with the name, address, and telephone number of the credit reporting company that provided the report. You have a right to get a free copy of your credit report from the credit reporting company within 60 days after you receive the notice. This free copy does not count toward your right to one annual credit report per 12-month period. You can also request that the credit reporting agency investigate any information you believe is inaccurate or incomplete.

If the credit card company says you can apply for a different card with different terms than the card you applied for, the card issuer must provide key disclosures about the new offer on or with the application. 

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