How to Cancel a Store Credit Card

You can close store credit cards over the phone, by mail or through the internet. In fact, it's no different to closing a regular bank credit card. The process seems simple enough, but you have to carefully follow specific steps to ensure the account is closed.

Store Cards

While store cards feature the names and logos of retailers, they are issued and serviced by banks. The name of the issuing bank appears on the back of the card. Failing that, you can find the name of the issuer listed on your credit card statement.

Customer Service

Account closures and other maintenance requests are typically handled through customer service hotlines. You can usually find the contact number on the rear of the card. You must pay any balance owed first. Ask the customer service representative to ensure there are no pending interest charges or transactions that have yet to clear the account. Service representatives may offer to cut your interest rate or increase your perks if you agree to keep the card, but can't force you to take them. As an extra precaution, request confirmation of the closure in writing.

Written Requests

Some banks require written requests to be notarized. Send requests by certified mail just to ensure the letter gets to the bank. Written closure requests don't work as well if you're paying down a balance and closing an account. You can clarify pending charges when closing an account over the phone but obviously you can't have such a discussion via the mail. Therefore, assume the card is open until you receive written confirmation that your closure request has been received and processed. Some banks allow emailed requests as a quicker and cheaper alternative to mailed closure letters.

Rewards and Score Impact

Check your available rewards before you close your account. In many instances, you lose unused points and benefits when you cancel the card. Closing any card can also adversely affect your credit score. Part of that score depends on your average length of account history. You run the risk of reducing that average when you close a long held card.

references & resources