Topic Wiki

1)   What is a Financial Review?
In short - American Express occasionally freezes the credit card accounts of individuals with high-risk patterns, or for new account holders.
They request a lot of personal information, such as IRS tax returns, bank statements, letters from Banks ectÖ

Letís break it down into 2 different types of Financial Reviews
A)   Mini Financial Review
B)   Financial Review

A)   Mini Financial Review

(please fill in info) This form of financial review, is usually a short process, it could be as short as one phone call. American Express might feel a need to verify your finances for whatever reason, and they could call you to verify information. Your accounts could be suspended from using until you get in touch with them, typically they will restore your accounts after a simple phone call.

B)   Financial Review
This type of Financial Review is very common. It often happens when opening a new account for the first time, usually if you are opening a Charge Card, or a Business Card or if on a new account you start off will a lot of high spending.
American Express will suspend your account/s, they will not remove the suspension until the review is over, which takes around 2 weeks.

If you cannot provide the required information, shut down your account right away.

2)   Triggers

Look below for a list of triggers and links.
 
3)   What will happen?
Your accounts will get suspended. You will be able to log in online, and see account activity, but you will get a message that charging is suspended.

They will contact you via phone and email. Once you get in touch with them, (typically) you will be assigned a specific representative to work on your case.

The will require mainly IRS Tax returns. The point of a Financial Review is to verify your income. They may also require Back statements, a letter from a Bank to verify your address, and other documents. People have reported that they did survive a Financial Review with just bank statements.

As long as you could provide the documents they request you will be fine, they might lower your credit lines, but you should be able keep your account open. Even as low as a $6000 tax return people have been able to survive a Financial Review.

In cases of a Financial Review after opening a Business Card, you will need proof of Business income.

If you cannot provide the required information, shut down your account right away.

As long as you could provide the documents they request you will be fine, they might lower your credit lines, but you should be able keep your account open. Even as low as a $6000 tax return people have been able to survive a Financial Review.

4)   What Steps Should I take?

Get in touch with Amex as soon as you could. Send in the request inform promptly. You will have a rep that will be working with you, and telling you what documents are needed. 4506-t is a transcript request from the IRS for you last tax return. You will need to fill out this form, fax it to Amex, it will take them 24-48 hours until they receive this form, they will request the tax return from the IRS that could take about a week.

Important: you only have 2 attempts to send them the fax, if they reject it after 2 attempts you will get shut down. You don't get more than 2 attempts. (source)
You may be able to get 3 attempts if you ask for a manager.

You need to be on top of it, if you donít follow thru, they could shut your accounts down.


5)   What to do if American Express closed your accounts?

Once American Express closes your accounts, the only way to get back on is if you have the required information needed to pass a Financial Review. They will require you to request a 4506 form from the IRS (which will cost you $57) before they even approve any of your future applications.


To start you may want to read up here:

F/R triggers:
[/color]


Credit line of $25k or more
http://www.dansdeals.com/forums/index.php?topic=1438.msg10906#msg10906

Family member receiving FR can cause other family members to get Fr'ed as well
http://www.dansdeals.com/forums/index.php?topic=6223.msg74003#msg74003 http://www.dansdeals.com/forums/index.php?topic=8.msg24759#msg24759

Living at same address as someone who was FR'ed
http://www.dansdeals.com/forums/index.php?topic=8.msg77046#msg77046

Using majority of CL
http://www.dansdeals.com/forums/index.php?topic=7526.msg87716#msg87716

Large cash advance
http://www.dansdeals.com/forums/index.php?topic=5908.msg82906#msg82906

Nothing...
http://www.dansdeals.com/forums/index.php?topic=2723.msg30062#msg30062

Changing name on business card
http://www.dansdeals.com/forums/index.php?topic=3589.msg38101#msg38101

Mint purchases
http://www.dansdeals.com/forums/index.php?topic=146.msg22932#msg22932

Amex Gift Card Purchases
http://www.dansdeals.com/forums/index.php?topic=2422.msg26670#msg26670
http://www.dansdeals.com/forums/index.php?topic=8.msg40106#msg40106

Unusual spending
http://www.dansdeals.com/forums/index.php?topic=8.msg7627#msg7627
http://www.dansdeals.com/forums/index.php?topic=3710.msg39597#msg39597

Amazon payments (possibly)
http://www.dansdeals.com/forums/index.php?topic=3657.msg88656#msg88656
http://www.dansdeals.com/forums/index.php?topic=3524.msg42436#msg42436

Using close to reported income
http://www.dansdeals.com/archives/2537

Logging in online too much (!)
http://www.dansdeals.com/forums/index.php?topic=8.msg13741#msg13741

Prepaying
http://www.dansdeals.com/forums/index.php?topic=1712.msg13732#msg13732
http://www.dansdeals.com/forums/index.php?topic=3710.msg39725#msg39725

Adding Cardholders (many?)
http://www.dansdeals.com/forums/index.php?topic=8.msg49318#msg49318

Refunds exceeding total payments made on the card since it was opened
http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=8.msg845606#msg845606
[/font]
Though not exactly F/R, it's worth mentioning that Amex takes returned payments very seriously.
They often shut all accounts without going through the F/R process.

Author Topic: Amex F/R Master Thread  (Read 647158 times)

Offline coralsnake

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #30 on: June 02, 2008, 03:23:57 PM »
Of course people do....if you would be honest then you have nothing to fear from a FR. I got FR'd and had no problem getting out of it as I was being 100% honest......bottom line is be a good Jew. And I don't mean to say you are not.
I knew it.
So there is someone on here who got through a FR successfully!
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Offline lala

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #31 on: June 02, 2008, 03:44:27 PM »
Being a good jew has nothing to do with it. Do you ever churn cards? If you do, thats not jewish either. This has got nothing to do with that.

I knew that was a mistake to say, I didn't mean to put you down and Im sorry you took it that way. All I meant was that if you are honest (which you should be -and it wont hurt your application) you can get by an FR easily.

Why is churning cards not honest?

Offline Avid Reader

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #32 on: June 02, 2008, 11:21:54 PM »
Of course people do....if you would be honest then you have nothing to fear from a FR. I got FR'd and had no problem getting out of it as I was being 100% honest......bottom line is be a good Jew. And I don't mean to say you are not.

And your 8 only years old!  :D

Offline Yitzter

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #33 on: June 02, 2008, 11:28:12 PM »
I knew that was a mistake to say, I didn't mean to put you down and Im sorry you took it that way. All I meant was that if you are honest (which you should be -and it wont hurt your application) you can get by an FR easily.

Why is churning cards not honest?

Because the company states that it's a one time bonus, and you are taking advantage of a flaw in the system. Thats being DISHONEST which is kind of like stealing.

When you wait and sign up again the system doesn't realize and gives you another bonus which in reality you shouldn't be getting.
"There are three types of people in this world: those who make things happen, those who watch things

Offline AsherO

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #34 on: June 03, 2008, 11:57:38 PM »
Because the company states that it's a one time bonus, and you are taking advantage of a flaw in the system. Thats being DISHONEST which is kind of like stealing.

When you wait and sign up again the system doesn't realize and gives you another bonus which in reality you shouldn't be getting.

With all due respect, I disagree.

I churned the Starwood card, got a bunch of StarPoint bonuses, a few years later, I applied for a Starwood business Amex (legit, Tax ID and all), I was approved and got the bonus.

For this last bonus, should I call them up and tell them to take the points back?
Noooo....
Why Not?
Because they gave them to me....

I don't think the CC companies are dumb, they have all kinds of promotions to get people to apply for accounts. They reserve the right to limit some of those promotions, and sometimes the excercise that right, but if the beancounters let it fly, rest assured it's in their best interests.
HTs are the new post-count.

Offline ash

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #35 on: June 04, 2008, 02:14:32 AM »
i agree
they definitly make alot of money from people like us so even if we play a game its one that they put out there and they have the potential to make allot of money from us

Offline Yitzter

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #36 on: June 04, 2008, 05:39:44 AM »
With all due respect, I disagree.

I churned the Starwood card, got a bunch of StarPoint bonuses, a few years later, I applied for a Starwood business Amex (legit, Tax ID and all), I was approved and got the bonus.

For this last bonus, should I call them up and tell them to take the point back?
Noooo....
Why Not?
Because they gave them to me....

I don't think the CC companies are dumb, they have all kinds of promotions to get people to apply for accounts. They reserve the right to limit some of those promotions, and sometimes the excercise that right, but if the beancounters let it fly, rest assured it's in their best interests.
i agree
they definitly make alot of money from people like us so even if we play a game its one that they put out there and they have the potential to make allot of money from us

Ok, I hear what you guys are saying. I am just trying to say that normal and regular people don't sign up/cancel/signup etc.

The idea is, you are getting something without paying for it. My point was that they say clearly that it's a one time bonus. Many people were denied the 2x bonus on the starwoods card, it just so happened to be that they looked into that account.

The reason why people are getting 2x is because they can't check every account and the system passes it. I don't think they are "Making money" off people when they churn cards repeatedly, and get thousands of extra points.

I don't think they "let it pass". They just don't have the manpower to stop it.

The fact that you know that it's stated that it's a one time bonus and still trying to get it twice, is being a little dishonest. I'm not perfect and have done the same.

If you guys remember I was actually arguing with someone who said that we should be good jews and not lie. Anyway it is way past my bed time.

Take care everyone.
"There are three types of people in this world: those who make things happen, those who watch things

Offline travelguy

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #37 on: June 04, 2008, 09:36:06 AM »
I and my wife got FR'd at the same time.  We each had strawood cons and bus cards, gold  card, and Hilton card.  We let them have our tax return, and we had no problem afterwards.

Offline AsherO

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #38 on: June 04, 2008, 09:45:17 AM »
Yitzter,

if I had to guess, their systems are automated (it would me a huge waste of manpower to manually each account). The same system that loops through every account and posts the bonus can surely be programmed to check if the same person (SSN?) already received the bonus.

P.s. The mobile version of the forums is great, but I can't quote...
HTs are the new post-count.

Offline Yitzter

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #39 on: June 06, 2008, 03:19:11 AM »
Yitzter,

if I had to guess, their systems are automated (it would me a huge waste of manpower to manually each account). The same system that loops through every account and posts the bonus can surely be programmed to check if the same person (SSN?) already received the bonus.

P.s. The mobile version of the forums is great, but I can't quote...

Listen, the reality is, you aren't supposed to get them. Why people do, I don't know, but your not. So by you doing it, it's kind of being dishonest.
"There are three types of people in this world: those who make things happen, those who watch things

Offline Dan

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #40 on: June 06, 2008, 03:49:14 PM »
Because the company states that it's a one time bonus, and you are taking advantage of a flaw in the system. Thats being DISHONEST which is kind of like stealing.

When you wait and sign up again the system doesn't realize and gives you another bonus which in reality you shouldn't be getting.

I strongly disagree.


You are absolutely allowed to open up multiple credit cards of the same branding. The fact that they give you the signup bonus each time you open another card is a totally moot point.  If they didn't want to give signup bonuses multiple times they would have better systems in place not to allow it, or not to allow people to open the same card more than once.

There's nothing remotely dishonest (and obviously not stealing!) about having 2 Starwood or AA cards.
« Last Edit: June 06, 2008, 03:51:24 PM by Dan »
Save your time, I don't answer PM. Post it in the forum and a dedicated DDF'er will get back to you as soon as possible.

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #41 on: June 06, 2008, 05:15:43 PM »
There's nothing remotely dishonest (and obviously not stealing!) about having 2 Starwood or AA cards.
How about a few hundred cards? ;D

Offline Dan

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #42 on: June 06, 2008, 08:05:10 PM »
How about a few hundred cards? ;D
Unless I missed the memo that stated the limits of the number of credit cards one can open, I don't see what the issue is here.
Save your time, I don't answer PM. Post it in the forum and a dedicated DDF'er will get back to you as soon as possible.

Offline Yitzter

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #43 on: June 08, 2008, 04:54:07 AM »
I strongly disagree.


You are absolutely allowed to open up multiple credit cards of the same branding. The fact that they give you the signup bonus each time you open another card is a totally moot point.  If they didn't want to give signup bonuses multiple times they would have better systems in place not to allow it, or not to allow people to open the same card more than once.

There's nothing remotely dishonest (and obviously not stealing!) about having 2 Starwood or AA cards.

Good point. Your are right.
"There are three types of people in this world: those who make things happen, those who watch things

Offline Eli

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #44 on: June 08, 2008, 11:36:13 AM »
I agree with what most of the ppl are saying here. If a company allows it, you can do it. If they were so Makpid, they would make sure not to allow it. What happens when Cingular tells you "ok sir, this is a one time credit and you cannot get another courtesy credit for 12 months", and you call the next day and get more credit. It is their responsibility to realize that you are not entitled to it, but they don't, so Kol Hakovod, take advantage. It's like taking advantage of Nordstrom's return policy (please don't let this thread start a Nordstrom discussion). They allow returns no matter what, no matter when, as long as you have the receipt, and many times even when you don't have the receipt. People tell me it's a Chillul H to do it but I don't see how it could be if I'm just taking advantage of their policy.

Either way, I think we should all get off the subject of whether what we are doing is Halachically and morally right or wrong. Everyone has their own views of things, and everyone will have to give a Din V'Cheshbon for what they do. We all know that. So live and let live and don't bother people about what they are doing.
-Eli