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Forgiving penalty terms
In the same section of the Schumer Box, the issuer must also tell you what the penalty rate, or "default rate," will be if, for example, you pay late or go over your limit. (It can shoot up above 30%.)

The issuer also must disclose what triggers this rate, next to an asterisk below the box. Look for a card that allows at least one or two late payments before the default APR kicks in.

NEXT: Finance charges based on average daily balance

Last updated July 30 2008: 7:37 AM ET
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