Aug. 9 (UPI) -- Chase Bank announced it is forgiving all credit card debt held by Canadian customers more than one year after the company decided to close all credit card accounts there.
Chase closed the credit cards, which were co-branded with Marriott and Amazon, in March 2018, but continued collecting on balances due.
"Chase made the decision to exit the Canadian credit card market," Chase spokeswoman Maria Martinez said in a statement. "A further business decision was made earlier this year to forgive all outstanding balances in order to complete the exit."
Martinez said Chase determined it was better for all parties if the company forgave the debt rather than try to sell the debt to a third-party debt collector.
Some customers said they were left stunned when they learned of the debt forgiveness.
Douglas Turner, who owed $6,157, said he was initially panicked when he received a letter from Chase.
"I'm thinking, 'OK, I missed a payment,'" he told the CBC. "It's crazy. This stuff doesn't happen with credit cards. Credit Cards are horror stories."
Chase declined to reveal how many customers had their debt forgiven or how much total debt the company wiped clean.