One of the Firm’s clients learned the hard way about credit card fraud.

The client was a limited partner in a restaurant. He discovered that someone associated with the business had obtained a credit card in the client's name without his knowledge, made sure the bills were sent to the restaurant so the client would not see them, and used the card for over $40,000 in expenses for the restaurant.

With finance charges, the balance had increased to more than $47,000 when the client finally learned about the unauthorized card and unpaid balance. The tip-off: the client noticed that his very good credit rating had declined, despite paying all his bills on time.

The client contacted the credit card issuer and cancelled the card. But despite numerous phone calls and letters trying to resolve the $47,000 bill, he got nowhere.

Gary F. Torrell, who leads the Firm’s Business and Finance, Real Estate and Creditors’ Rights practice areas, then got involved on the client’s behalf. After two letters and calls from Gary, the credit card company agreed to report all charges as fraudulent, not bill the client further, and repair their negative credit reporting about him.

“I thank you from the very bottom of my heart,” the client said to Gary. “There is no way that I can adequately relate to you my gratitude to you for your work and results in my case.”

While this instance of credit card fraud had a positive outcome, says Gary, it is wise to keep a close eye both on monthly credit card statements, to spot unauthorized charges, and on credit reports that can uncover fraudulently opened charge card accounts.