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:
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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
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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 754694 times)

Offline Yitzter

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #45 on: June 11, 2008, 03:38:07 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.
Good point too, you are also right.
"There are three types of people in this world: those who make things happen, those who watch things

Offline lala

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #46 on: June 15, 2008, 08:45:51 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.

Totally false. Do you really think that the credit card companies have a flawed sytem? They know people do things like this all the time.

Offline coralsnake

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #47 on: June 16, 2008, 05:10:32 PM »
Good point too, you are also right.
Not everyone can be correct at the same time.

Nor do we need a post each time to tell everyone how 'right' they are.
"Here at DansDeals we donít do buses." -Dan

Offline Yitzter

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #48 on: June 16, 2008, 09:52:06 PM »
Not everyone can be correct at the same time.

Nor do we need a post each time to tell everyone how 'right' they are.
Why not, I am just agreeing with the post. Those people brought down some very valid points, and I think it's right of me to tell them what I think.
"There are three types of people in this world: those who make things happen, those who watch things

Offline D.S.

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #49 on: June 17, 2008, 02:17:47 AM »
I had the same problem.  I preemptively closed all 3 of my AmEx cards once I got word of my financial review.  I assume that my Starwoods and Delta points are all safe in their respective accounts.  But I had also just beforehand signed up for that AmEx business gold card, with the 25,000 point bonus.  Are those lost altogether?

levi

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #50 on: June 17, 2008, 02:19:13 AM »
I had the same problem.  I preemptively closed all 3 of my AmEx cards once I got word of my financial review.  I assume that my Starwoods and Delta points are all safe in their respective accounts.  But I had also just beforehand signed up for that AmEx business gold card, with the 25,000 point bonus.  Are those lost altogether?
Did you make a purchase on the card?

Offline Smirk

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #51 on: June 17, 2008, 03:32:04 AM »
Can somebody define churn and how to do it (or a link that explains it)?

Offline Avid Reader

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #52 on: June 17, 2008, 11:39:17 AM »
Can somebody define churn and how to do it (or a link that explains it)?

Signing up for a service like a cell phone, internet service, or credit card, to get the sign-up benefits and then cancel the service when the benefits are gone. Then sign up again, and cancel again etc..

Offline Mendel

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #53 on: June 17, 2008, 03:36:10 PM »
Can somebody define churn and how to do it (or a link that explains it)?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Churn_rate

Offline E

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #54 on: June 17, 2008, 03:44:05 PM »
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Churn_rate
this is the churn rate which is a measure of the number of individuals or items moving into or out of a collection over a specific period of time. not the churning everyone is referring to

Offline Mendel

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #55 on: June 17, 2008, 05:27:16 PM »
this is the churn rate which is a measure of the number of individuals or items moving into or out of a collection over a specific period of time. not the churning everyone is referring to

the link was just a joke...

Offline Avid Reader

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #56 on: June 19, 2008, 11:39:06 AM »
I got a call from Amex today they left a message on my voicmail to call them back and gave me an extension. I called back and it was the Financial Review team. Just what I suspected. I hung up. I looked up my accounts online and they all have the charging privileges suspended. :-[

Just wondering what the process is from here. Do they send me a letter in the mail or if I don't call back they will just close my accounts. I don't want to preemptively close my accounts yet as I'm still waiting for a starwood bonus to post. Also perhaps there is a chance I can send them bank statements or something and pass. Any advice would be appreciated.

BTW, I never used close to 25% and any card and I dont have any cards that are 25K and over.

Offline coralsnake

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #57 on: June 19, 2008, 06:12:15 PM »
I got a call from Amex today they left a message on my voicmail to call them back and gave me an extension. I called back and it was the Financial Review team. Just what I suspected. I hung up. I looked up my accounts online and they all have the charging privileges suspended. :-[

Just wondering what the process is from here. Do they send me a letter in the mail or if I don't call back they will just close my accounts. I don't want to preemptively close my accounts yet as I'm still waiting for a starwood bonus to post. Also perhaps there is a chance I can send them bank statements or something and pass. Any advice would be appreciated.

BTW, I never used close to 25% and any card and I dont have any cards that are 25K and over.
The first question is- Did you state your actual income on your Amex card application?Also - do you carry any balances on your Amex cards?
Have you had any late payments?
"Here at DansDeals we donít do buses." -Dan

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #58 on: June 19, 2008, 08:48:28 PM »
The first question is- Did you state your actual income on your Amex card application?Also - do you carry any balances on your Amex cards?
Have you had any late payments?

Actual income , no. If I did I wouldn't be worried. Never a late payment to anyone B"H. Yes I carry balances. In fact I made purchases totaling over 4k this month on one amex card, paid off 2k before any payment was even due. I have 3 cards.

Offline stevenk

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #59 on: June 26, 2008, 03:45:23 PM »
I have a Starwood gold card with a credit limit of 45,000. Ive never used over 15,000 monthly and spend annually 60,000. Should I have them reduce my limit to 20,000? Also I have an extra card for my wife (for the 25,000 bonus) should I cancel it since I got the bonus already?