Senator Menendez's Prepaid Card Bill Would Restrict Underserved Consumers' Access to Much Needed Financial Tool, Says NBPCA

Prepaid Card Consumer Protection Act of 2010 Calls for Anti-Competitive Price Controls, Overlooks Existing Consumer Protections Offered by the Cards

Dec 17, 2010, 12:20 ET from Network Branded Prepaid Card Association

WASHINGTON, Dec. 17, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- Reloadable prepaid debit cards offer financially underserved consumers without access to traditional banking services a safe, cost efficient way to participate in our card-based economy. The Network Branded Prepaid Card Association (NBPCA) is concerned the Prepaid Card Consumer Protection Act (PCCPA) of 2010, sponsored by Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ), mandating fee caps and bans on certain fees, among other provisions, could reduce consumers' choice or increase pricing, and potentially lead to prepaid cards being withdrawn from the market.

As a trade association representing the branded prepaid card industry, NBPCA and its members seek to set the industry standard for prepaid cards, ensuring consumers have choices in which features and products best fit their needs, and providing clear disclosures with strong protections.

"NBPCA fully supports disclosures of material fees prior to purchase so consumers can pick the card that best fits their individual needs and lifestyles. Regulation that prohibits or eliminates certain fees doesn't recognize that consumers use prepaid cards differently and they choose services based upon the costs for these features," said Kirsten Trusko, NBPCA President and Executive Director.

Fees associated with network branded reloadable prepaid cards are driven by consumers' behavior such as ATM usage, card reloading and lost card replacement. Fees cover not only card production, but fraud and theft protections, anti-money laundering requirements, and consumer services such as online tracking of expenditures, phone or text balance checks, and ATM or point-of-sale cash access.

"NBPCA remains committed to supporting a regulatory framework that preserves consumers' access to prepaid cards while maintaining a sustainable business model for companies to provide these products.  We look forward to working with Senator Menendez and sharing facts around the full landscape of prepaid reloadable cards, how they are used and by whom," added Trusko.  

About the NBPCA

The Network Branded Prepaid Card Association (NBPCA) is a non-profit, inter-industry trade association that supports the growth and success of network branded prepaid debit cards and represents the common interests of the many players in this new and rapidly growing payments category. For additional information visit or the NBPCA Facebook page.

SOURCE Network Branded Prepaid Card Association