In 2005, Congress passed the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act (BAPCPA). Consumer advocates strongly opposed this bill, warning that it was designed only to profit credit card companies while harming consumers. A study ordered by Congress when the passed the bill has proven these advocates right, unfortunately.
According to this summary (PDF) of the study, “although bankruptcies and credit card company losses decreased, and although credit card companies achieved record profits, the cost to consumers of credit card debt actually increased. In other words, BAPCPA profited credit card companies at consumers’ expense.”