You may remember a few weeks ago I wrote about the new Kardashian Kard. This pre-paid debit card, which was initially targeted to teens, is full of ridiculous fees and should be avoided at all costs!
Well, now the Kardashian sisters no longer want to be affiliated with the card. Immediately there was a lot of negative press calling the Kardashian Kard a ripoff! Now Yahoo Finance is reporting the following:
An attorney for the sisters sent a letter Monday to parties affiliated with the card asking them to immediately stop using the names and images of the three sisters.
The notice came after Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal warned on Friday that he would investigate the program to see if it violated state laws to protect consumers. He called the card’s fees “predatory.”
It’s not just the fact that the card includes these awful fees, but that the card is being marketed toward young adults who have little to no experience with debit cards or even bank accounts.
The fact that the Kardashian’s are so popular with teens and young adults could have made this a great opportunity to teach them about personal financial management. Instead, they used this as a way to rip them off!
If you don’t remember how terrible the fees actually are, I’ll repost them here:
The Kardashian Kard’s Pricing and Fees
Initial Purchase Options:
- 6 Month Payment Option (save $2.70) – $59.95
- 12 Month Payment Option (save $10.40) – $99.95
These options include the following charges:
- One-Time Card Purchase – $9.95
- Card Arrives Loaded with $5 – $5.00
- Monthly Fee – $7.95/month
So, when you first purchase this card, you can either buy a 6-month package or a 12-month package. Then after that initial period, you must pay $7.95 each month! This means that in the first two years of owning the card, you will have to pay at least $195.35. Keep it for 3 years and you’ll be out almost $300 in fees!!!
There are fees for the following:
- ATM withdrawals
- ATM Inquiries
- ATM Declines
- Point of Sale Declines
- Transfers to or from an external bank account
- Transfers to another Kardashian Kard
- Adding Money to Your Account
- Canceling Your Account (when requesting a refund by check)
- Calling Customer Service
- Paying a Bill
- Replacing Your Kardashian Kard ($25!!!)
It is because of this list of fees why the Attorney General threatened to investigate the card! These fees put the card in the same category as payday loans in my eyes!
Don’t expect to see a long drawn-out battle over the Kardashian sisters’ contractual obligation to promote and be associated with the card:
In a statement late Monday, card-issuer University National Bank confirmed that it had ended the sale of the Kardashian cards. Consumers who bought the card will get their money back, including fees that they might have incurred, it said.
MasterCard, which was a partner in the card, said in a statement that “the decision to end the program affirms that consumers did not find value in this particular prepaid offering.”
“Did not find value in this particular prepaid offering”?!?!?!?!? They wanted you to pay $100/year for this card and expected you to find value in it? At least the misguided (I’m being extremely kind here) people who purchased this card will get their money back.
The website has already been shut down, so I guess it’s really official. Of course, my wife just asked me, “why didn’t they just improve the deal?”. All I can do is laugh, because that would have been the sensible thing to do. They could still have the Kardashian name to back them, but just not gouge kids as much as before!
What are some ways that you are working to teach your kids about personal finance?
Did you buy this card for yourself or your kid?
What do you think about all of these fees?
Why do you think they decided to shut the card down rather than rework the fee structure?