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Credit Cards - Offers by Third Parties
When evaluating a credit card solicitation, determine if it is from a bank which actually issues credit cards or if it is from a company claiming to guarantee that it can get you a credit card, regardless of your credit history. If the offer is not from a bank which issues credit cards, but rather from a "credit card processing or procurement firm", you need to carefully evaluate what is involved in the offer.

Many such third party credit card offers involve a fee just to get a credit card application. Once you receive the application, you may learn that you will need to deposit money in an out-of-state bank before getting your credit card. This money will serve as a credit limit or collateral for your account. A collateralized account can, in fact, be a way to prove responsibility in paying credit card bills, but you may be able to get such a card without paying a fee to a third party. Other companies may send a credit card which can be used only to make purchases from the company's own merchandise catalog, rather than the expected Visa or MasterCard.
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