Chadwicks Credit Card & Bankruptcy: What Happens Next?

bankruptcyBeing that Chadwicks of Boston is one of the nation’s largest mail order companies for women’s clothing, it was quite a surprise when their parent company filed for bankruptcy in June 2011.

During the following several months, a lot of things have happened. So what does this mean for those who have the Chadwicks credit card?

Fate of brand unknown?

Initially when Chadwicks’ parent company (Boston Apparel) filed for bankruptcy, they did chapter 7. Under chapter 7, a company goes completely kaput – they stop operating and liquid everything.

However that eventually was changed to chapter 11 – a form of bankruptcy where the business continues, but the debts are re-organized.

A company called Distinctive Apparel Inc. scooped up Chadwicks’ assets. So far, I have been unable to find evidence to support the brand (as it currently stands) will remain in business under the new company. What I’ve seen actually hints the opposite, since their warehouse operations have closed.

What happens to your credit card?

Obviously if the Chadwicks brand is discontinued, then the operations for their credit card division will probably be wound down also.

If this happens, from my experience when a store goes out of business, the credit card’s limit is cut to whatever the current balance is and the customer can continue paying down the balance on whatever the old terms were (remember they haven’t said whether this will happen or not – I’m just speculating).

Ironically the Chadwicks credit card application is still active on their website, which I find a bit strange being that I am finding recent complaints online which are alleging their orders are not being filled and they cannot reach customer service.

Whether those allegations are true or not, I do not know. But I do know one thing and that is definitely not a good idea to apply for their card right now!

And if you do have the card, keep a careful eye on what unfolds (and please update me in the comments below). That being said, the Chadwicks Gold Card is issued and managed by a totally separate company (World Financial Network National Bank) so I don’t think you have anything to worry about in terms of whether you will be able to reach cardholder customer support, pay your card’s bill, etc.

Written Nov 2011

The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

They stole my mine as well. Same story as above, bought in June 2011, returned ($152.00 worth), found out about the bankruptcy and filed all the required paperwork with the class action lawsuit. Haven’t seen a DIME> Thieves!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



I am in the same boat as many of you. I went through the painstaking and time-consuming (at least an hour each time) of calling trying to find out about my return (over $300 on an order placed in August of 2011) and was told every time that someone would get back to me, promise, promise, pinky-swear. Until the last time I called which was the end of December of 2011 and found out about the bankruptcy. Was told them to be “patient” and someone would call me to let me know about my return/return. Apparently was too patient since I just found out about the March 31, 2012 deadline.

Unbelievable. If anyone is interested, there is a website called “” that takes on consumer complaints if enough people are interested and and sign up. I’m headed there right now and hope you join me in the hopes we can get something for our money.

Does anyone have the website address they keep saying to go to on their recorded message? I cannot understand if they say 2 or q. It is something like and you have to fill out a form to get your return money by March 30th. They won’t let you talk to a real person and I returned $260 worth of clothing on Aug. 22, 2011 that I want to get a refund for.

Ursula Fitzgerald

After 5 months I have finally received my credit for $106.00. I disputed the charges with my credit card company. Luckily this was not a Chadwicks credit card purchase. Beware of Metrostyle too as they are owned by the same company! I hope everyone gets their money back. My advice would be to not even try to speak to anyone at Chadwicks and go straight to your credit card company and dispute the charges if possible.

I placed an order on June 13, 2011 for (3) items (2) two pair of Capris and (1) one pair of Crop Pants. The Crop Pants was on backorder and they finally arrived but when I got them, none of it fitted so I sent it back on July 15, 2011 at 4:10 pm.

It was coming time for a payment so I called on July 11, 2011 to see if I needed to make a payment since I had returned all the product and Lalonee told me I had to continue to make payments so it wouldn’t be delinquent and a late charge be occurred. So I continued to make payments until the account was paid in full. So, I called again on September 16, 2011 spoke with Kim then Sue. They told me that I would be reimbursed when they finished going through the change over.

My point is if they knew this why did they tell me to continue to make payments and now I’m out of 80.46. I’m out of money and merchandise. They sent a post card telling people to go to a certain website that’s not giving us no information that we can understand and when you call the 800 number there is no one you can talk to to guide you through the process.

I really enjoyed shopping with Metrostyle but this has left a bitter feeling in my stomach and it’s sad that so many people has been taken advantaged of. So what is a woman suppose to do? Heart Broken in GEORGIA

Hi Mary, I worked for chadwicks for 14 years and the were bought by a company called distinctive apparel. I bought shoes for chadwicks and also bought apparel for metrostyle. The company went through so many changes of management. In the end they switched to a new computer system that was not good. I do believe if you do contact the new customer service people they will do everything in their power to make it right. Don’t give up on them. They do have a good team of people who want to to make things right despite prior management. All the best.

I also placed on order to Chadwick, April 2011 and returned the two items August 2011. But received no refund. I was told eventually that the Boston company filed Bankruptcy.

They instructed me how to file a claim to the city of Boston for class action litigation lawsuit bankruptcy court. I sent off all the paperwork before they required deadline.

I have to receive a response or any kind of refund. I purchased two bathing suits at $50 each, total of $100 plus tax

Can you please help or advise where I should go from here. I really need the money since I am not working.

former associate

Still waiting for w-2. Would like to file taxes. still problems

I ordered two blazers that did not appear as pictured so returned them. After a couple of months, I did not receive a credit to my major credit card. The call center is always with “high call volume” and when you do get through they always say “our system is down and cannot see my order”. That obviously is a crock. I finally disputed the purchase with my credit card company and the monies were credited back to my account and Chadwick’s had 45 days to appeal which so far they haven’t. They have about two weeks left so I think my case is closed. The executive leadership of Chadwick’s should be ashamed of how they have treated their customers who paid their salaries that they obviously mismanaged.

I ordered 3 items back in June 2011. By July, 2011, I received 2 of the 3. The third item was never sent. I sent back on my dime, the 2 items. Didn’t like either of them. I spoke with someone in the catalog center on September 2, 2011. He verified that those items were received. He even gave me a return confirmation number. I chose to pay the minimum due. He told me that by the next billing cycle with WFNNB, it should be reflected. In total, I have paid $96.35 on merchandise that I DO NOT OWN!!!!! Just got off the phone today, after many run arounds, I was told that Distinctive Apparel is now the owner of Chadwicks and others. Was told that in about 30 days, I should receive notification of merchandise credit. I kept asking 30 days from when? I am appalled that Chadwicks knowingly took orders and now we customers are having to fight hard to get back what is rightfully ours. I DO NOT WANT A CREDIT FROM THIS COMPANY!!!! I want a refund certified check in the amount of $96.35!!!! There is no excuse for this poor customer service. Everything is computerized. With one click, the catalog center should have been able to tell WFNNB that items were returned on this account so do not bill them.

Another Old Associate

The Chapter 7 was changed to 11 on the day the company was to go to auction. The landlord took exception to being stiffed. It was all supposed to be handed over to Distinctive at a bargain price in a tidy package. As we received our layoff letters we were then told your not laid off, get back to work it is business as usual by the CEO Steve Lightman. Tim Mayes from Distinctive Apparel was on site long before 6/30/11 as well as Blackstreet Capital who was financing Chadwicks and calling the shots.

It then played out as a very long drama for customers as well as the customer service associates that answered the phones who were ordered not to say the “B” word. Once we were told we could not cash our paychecks until instructed as the bankruptcy court Judge froze all assets. Numerous system issues only sped up the final day of work. The poor customers who never got their refunds ordering before of after 6/30th should not hold their breath.

According to Distinctive they are not responsible for anything under Womens Apparel Group. Although Steve Lightman is no longer the CEO of Womens Apparel, he is coincidentally on the Board of Directors for Distinctive. Personally I hope people will file suit against Mr. Lightman and all associated with the dirty backroom deals!

FYI: Chadwicks still exists. however they were bought by a different company in June out of the bankruptcy. I heard anyone waiting for anything before that purchase will not get any refund. People after this new company bought it will get merchandise guaranteed. (I use to work for Chadwicks.) I worked on the catalogs and to answer questions about why items are in the catalog and not there anymore is the catalog gets printed months in advance so its very difficult to change and cost a ton of money. FYI I was laid off in June when the company was being bought. They are down to about 40 or so people (when i started with the company over 5 years ago there was thousands of employees.) Its sad to see that’s what happened. I do not think the company should be allowed to exist anymore but for my friends that are still working for them, i am happy they have a job.

You should contact the BBB and the attorneys generals office because the company is not only scamming customers it is scamming everyone else too. (I went through a bunch of lay-offs and got the same things said, we need to be leaner and smarter) we all ended up working ourselves out of a job because they cut the positions that matters Quality Control and Customer Service. That no longer exists in the company.

Good luck to all trying to fight it. I am glad i no longer work for that pathetic company.

My mother (81 years old) was not aware of the bankruptcy filing and mailed Chadwicks a check for a couple of pairs of boots back in late October–months after the bankruptcy filing–which of course she has not received, although the catalogues keep on coming. She (and I) have called and emailed repeatedly and have experienced the same lack of response noted by others above. The really infuriating thing is that they continue to send out catalogues, trolling for more unsuspecting customers who will place orders for merchandise that Chadwicks apparently has no intention of sending!

If this isn’t fraud, I don’t know what is, or why the Attorney General of MA can’t shut these crooks down. Is there no enterprising attorney out there who would take this on as a class action lawsuit?? It would be great if all of us who’ve been victimized could organize somehow for some relief, because otherwise I fear that all of our individual filings with the bankruptcy court will simply get shuffled down to the bottom of the pile if/when creditors are finally paid.

I placed an order in June. received it and didnt like the stuff so sent it right back and since then I have got the run around. first was told the company was going through financial restructure and would be about 4 months to get my refund. every time I call its a long wait. one time I waited 20 minutes and the person who answered said they were having computer problems that day and she promised someone would call me back the next day. that didnt happen so I called back and waited almost 30 minutes and someone pick up the phone then hung up. now there is a recording where to send information to the bankruptcy court in Boston for help in getting money back. I am waiting for $75 and would have settled for a credit but that was never offered to me. Sad about how this was handled and the lies.

I’m still waiting for a refund from July for an item that was no longer available. First they said I’d get a refund check, then after several calls I was told I’d get an in-store credit WHICH I DO NOT WANT!! Every time I call the recording says due to high volume of calls the wait time is long. I wish I knew a good lawyer!!

I’m still waiting for a refund from last July for an item that was no longer available. First I was told that I’d get a refund, then after several calls I was gold I’d get an in-store credit WHICH I DO NOT WANT!! Every time I call the recording says that ” due to an increased amount of calls, the wait time is long”. I wish there was some legal action I could take.

Please understand that the card services company will not give you any assistance if you have problems with your order. I ordered three items from Chadwicks and returned two. They were delivered and I have confirmation of that. I am going to dispute the charges for the other two items and provide proof they were returned. I was told that I must have proof in order to get my account credited. We will see what happens but I am NOT going to pay for items returned to a company that I no longer have.

I placed an order quite some time ago and when it never showed up I started doing some checking. That’s when I found that they had filed bankruptcy. I called and canceled the order but had read about all of the their misdealings. “Shady” is an understatement. This is downright criminal! One of the items actually arrived 3 weeks after I canceled the order. Knowing that I would be charged anyway, I opened the package hoping that it would be right just so I could avoid all of this hassle. The item was the wrong size, wrong color, and was a damaged return from a prior customer.

I returned it but insured it and got a tracking number. It was received by them over two weeks ago but they are still charging my Chadwicks credit card. I will not pay one red cent and I have kept very good records of all of transactions. Good luck trying to get someone there to answer an email or telephone call. It ain’t gonna happen! RUN from this company because they are certainly not about trying to please their customers

My experience is similar to all mentioned above. I ordered a specific sweater back in August. I have to wear certain color tops for work, and it is hard to find. When my order, which was backordered, did not arrive, I called and told that it was no longer available.

A catalog arrived, same sweater, same style number appeared in catalog, so I ordered it again along with a cotton top in the color I needed. Last week the cotton top arrived, but the order receipt stated that the sweater backorder had been cancelled. YET – the same sweater is in the latest catalog and also on line. Why would they be advertising something that does not exist?

I ordered quite a few things from Chadwick’s in the past and the customer service was excellent. I am not out any money, but surely feel bad for those of you who were stiffed, and the employees whose checks bounce.

Ursula Fitzgerald

I ordered a coat from them and returned it and instead of issuing a credit they charged my account again. It was charged in October and then again in November 2011. It has been a battle to get it straightened out with long hold times, broken down computers and just plain ignorance, it is still not right. I did not know they filed bankruptcy until now and this new company is shady!!

former employee


The credit card product is owned by a third-party company/processor called Alliance Data Systems. They offer private label credit cards for numerous companies. World Financial is the bank. If you have purchased From Chadwicks or Metrostyle you owe the money to this company not Chadwicks. If you have returned the product or dispute ever receiving it, the liability is ADS. They must return your funds just like any other credit card. It is up the ADS to get the money back from Chadwicks/Distinctive Apparel Inc. Be forceful. It may take a little effort but ADS is legally required to issue you a refund for any disputed purchase.

6 months ago I paid for an order, they cashed my check then made it impossible to get in touch with anyone. They never even told me they filed for bankruptcy. I want my $126.97 back from Chadwicks. They had no problem cashing check on June 1, when they knew they were filing. I was also given the wrong case number,when finally talked to supervisor. I cant file a claim without it. ALL CUSTOMERS SHOULD BE SENT CLAIM FORMS WITH CASE NUMBER. this is so shady

I do not have a Chadwicks credit card. However, I do have an outstanding order with Chadwicks. It was on “backorder” in September; Scheduled to ship Nov. 5, 2011. The on-line order tracking (and website) are (and have been) unavailable for weeks. The call-center personnel have been saying for 3 weeks that it will be up “in a couple of days”. The bigger problem is that – even speaking to a rep – NOONE can tell me if my order has shipped as scheduled. I was on “hold” last week for a total of 45 minutes during which time I spoke to 2 different reps (1 in the call center and 1 in another department) and was cut off twice, The second time I called back after being cut off, I asked to speak to a supervisor and was AGAIN cut off (deliberately, I presume). Nothing was resolved. There’s not a sole there who has any authority to tell customers anything. It begs the question…WHY IN BLAZES are they still taking orders that they – apparently – have no intention (or provisions) to fulfill? Frustrated in Illinois!

What about returned merchandise that I am due a credit? Do you see I will ever see this money?

I am not confident that I will ever see my refund in the amount of $126.00.

I cannot believe that this company is taking orders when they have no intention of refunding your money if you send anything back. The Attorney General in MA needs to be involved and help people to get their money back, this is a case of theft. Everyone needs to contact the Attorney General in MA for resolution of this deplorable situation. Chadwicks is stealing a great deal of money from people and we are helpless to stop it.

To M.M.

Give the contact information on the AG for MA so we can load the office with many complaints.

Thank you.