SOL Definition question

Discussion in 'Credit Talk' started by Erica, Aug 4, 2001.

  1. Erica

    Erica Well-Known Member

    Is a credit card considered a written contract or an open ended account for SOL purposes?

    This is the definition of both at the creditinfocenter site:

    Written Contract - You agree to pay on a loan under terms written in a document, which you and your debtor have signed

    Open Ended Accounts - These are revolving lines of credit with varying balances. The best example is a credit card account.

    Now I know what the definitions say, but I technically signed a document for a credit card that says I will pay on the card until the balance is zero and there are terms attached. So which one is it?
  2. dave

    dave Well-Known Member

    A credit card account would fit the definition of an open ended account. While technically it might be construed also as a written contract, the narrower (more specific) defintion would prevail over the more general one--a standard principle of statutory construction is that where a statute addresses a specific subject matter, it controls over a more general statute that would otherwise include it. Of course, the difference between the two defiinitions may not be of any consequence if the limitations period for open ended accounts and written contracts is the same, as I suspect it is in many states.
  3. Erica

    Erica Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the reply Dave. The SOL for these different accounts is not the same in NY. The SOL for written contracts is 6 years while open ended is 4.

    Thanks a bunch!

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