Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) has introduced the Prepaid Card Disclosure Act of 2014, which would demand greater transparency from banks about prepaid card fees. If passed, the bill would require that issuers provide consumers with a schedule of basic fees and possible charges before they purchase a card.
The card itself would have display a toll-free number and website where consumers can access additional fee information. Banks are increasing their presence in the prepaid card market, even though the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has indicated that it may broaden its oversight of this market later this year. "At nearly $700 billion in sales each year, prepaid cards are one of the fastest growing parts of the financial industry," Warner said in a press release. "It's important that young people and people without credit history or access to traditional banking tools have access to prepaid cards, but we can't let the technology outpace smart consumer protections."