Like it nor not, credit cards are becoming increasingly popular in today's world. [Photo: fininformer.com]
Like it nor not, credit cards are becoming increasingly popular in today's world. Some view it as a benefit since credit cards allow overdrafts but others think it is a drawback as overdraft can lead to financial trouble. Here is a story whose protagonist got involved in two lawsuits due to one credit card. After the card holder's death, his credit card was found to be overdrawn. The guarantor was sentenced to pay the money back. But he won't let the matter go at that.
Fu Pengwei teaches Chinese in a middle school in east China's Shanghai. On June 30, 2006, he was correcting his students' papers when suddenly the phone rang.
"I got a call from the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China and I was asked to promptly go to the bank and pay some money back."
The call took Fu Pengwei by great surprise. He was at a loss as to what kind of money he might have owed the bank.
"I was rather baffled. I didn't buy a car nor did I have housing loans or any other loans. Why would the ICBC China ask for me? The staff member told me over the phone that there was a credit card for which I was the guarantor and it had been overdrawn two or three months ago. He asked me to pay off the credit."
On hearing this, Fu Pengwei became even more perplexed. Since when has he become a guarantor? And for whom? He asked these questions and was told that back in 2001, he was the guarantor for a credit card applied by Chen Ze.
The name of Chen Ze finally rang a bell for Fu Pengwei. They once both worked in the same school, Fu Pengwei teaching Chinese and Chen Ze fine arts.
"We were friends. At that time we were together for quite some time, which helped us build up a close relationship."
Later Chen Ze left the school and worked for an insurance company. But the two kept close contacts. One day in July 2001, Chen Ze asked Fu Pengwei to be his guarantor as he wanted to apply for a credit card from the ICBC China. Fu Pengwei recalled.
"He wanted to buy a house. Fearing that he might not always have enough money at hands, he considered applying for a credit card. This way, he could occasionally make overdrafts to make ends meet."
According to the rules of the bank, close relatives could not be one's guarantor when one applies for a credit card. So Chen Ze turned to his friend for help. Learning that it took little trouble to provide the guaranty, Fu Pengwei agreed for the sake of their friendship.