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 1071216 times)

Offline argo

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Re: Questions for Dan
« Reply #120 on: February 04, 2010, 03:01:29 PM »
Are you serious?

Offline mordys

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Re: Questions for Dan
« Reply #121 on: February 04, 2010, 06:30:09 PM »
Apparently (from good source), logging in online very often to check your statement/balance with amex isn't a good thing, as they keep track of it (no the customer support don't know about it), but it shows to them that you are nervous about it.

That's very hard to believe.
Especially becuase there are many sites (I.e. Yodlee) that you put in your log in info and check your account automaticlly daily.

Offline Dan

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Re: Avoiding AMEX F/R Questions
« Reply #122 on: February 04, 2010, 06:48:50 PM »
That's very hard to believe.
Especially becuase there are many sites (I.e. Yodlee) that you put in your log in info and check your account automaticlly daily.
+1.
What the good source?

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 SuperFlyer

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Re: Avoiding AMEX F/R Questions
« Reply #123 on: February 04, 2010, 06:54:43 PM »
+1.
What the good source?



The good source is a very senior supervisor by amex. Im not going onto more details, as errhhhmm he helps me a lot.

It is only applicable to the USA Amex, and according to his info, more and more credit card companies start working with lots of factors, with which they base reports and queries on, to detect accounts at risk.

Its not because your account is being checked automatically by some site that it doesnt count.

i wasnt talking about the IP, just about the fact that people who check "too" often their account, might be up to something.

Im sure they combine it with different checks to get a picture.

Today they are very much based on statistics to prevent fraud.

Offline moish

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Is it possible to get fr'ed twice?
« Reply #124 on: February 07, 2010, 02:15:15 PM »
a few years ago when i got fr'ed for my two amexes, i somehow finagled my way out of it. im looking to now open a third but concerned that i might not be able to get out again in the event they fr me. does anyone know how their policy works? if i passed once am i good for life?

Offline SuperFlyer

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Re: Is it possible to get fr'ed twice?
« Reply #125 on: February 07, 2010, 02:25:02 PM »
normally yes, as they are all interconnected, even from different countries

Offline moish

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Re: Is it possible to get fr'ed twice?
« Reply #126 on: February 07, 2010, 02:30:30 PM »
what does different countries have to do with anything? as far as them being connected, im not sure what that has to do with it. basically id like to know if a new reason for them to fr me comes up, namely opening another card (and with that my total cl goes up) do they look at the past and see that i once passed or do they look at each instance separately?

Offline SuperFlyer

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Re: Is it possible to get fr'ed twice?
« Reply #127 on: February 07, 2010, 02:37:04 PM »
leave 6 month in between, if you want to be sure.

Im not american so im not sure of all the roshe teyvos.  "fr" means fried, frozen or something else?

Offline moish

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Re: Is it possible to get fr'ed twice?
« Reply #128 on: February 07, 2010, 02:45:44 PM »
financial review

Offline SuperFlyer

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Re: Is it possible to get fr'ed twice?
« Reply #129 on: February 07, 2010, 04:15:45 PM »
my answer is still correct.

Offline Mikeoracle

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Re: Financial Review
« Reply #130 on: February 21, 2010, 01:02:10 AM »
Hi,
I need some advice/guidance on how to proceed. I got a call at home and on my cell this weekend from Amex and the rep left a message for me to call her back to discuss an important business matter and this was not a solicitation etc... I went to my account online and there is a message that "Charging suspended. Please call 1-800-678-0738 if we haven't already spoken with you".
Before I call back I want to prepare myself with as much info and guidance on what to expect and what are the right things to say. Here are my credit details and usage;
I have 3 personal cards and 1 Business card (all credit-none are charge cards) total credit is about $70K
I applied with REAL income numbers and have the tax returns to back that up
The red flag probably was that I use a very high percentage of my credit every month- sometimes up to $60K or so but my problem is that the bulk of the charges are not my personal charges but a friends business charges and he pays my card direct from his bank account.

What would be the best way to explain my big charges without making it worse and how much of what I was doing should i not tell them etc....?
Is there any point in canceling my cards right away or should i call them first to see how it goes and hope that worst case they just lower all my limits...?

Thanks for any tips.

Offline jmail

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Re: Financial Review
« Reply #131 on: February 21, 2010, 02:25:16 AM »
I don't know what you should expect, but I would think that they will not be happy hearing that your friend is using your account for his charges. They issued the card to you.

Offline MOSES

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Re: Financial Review
« Reply #132 on: February 21, 2010, 05:27:16 AM »
why are you so sure it is a FR? maybe they just want to verify your card is not stolen?

Offline Dan

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Re: Financial Review
« Reply #133 on: February 21, 2010, 10:13:56 AM »
If you've got the income to back it up you've got nothing to worry about as long as you're willing to fork over your tax returns.

Just tell them that the spending is for your own business which is becoming more profitable and currently has a high spend rate.

Using such a high percentage of your credit line is definitely what triggered the FR.

At worst they'll cut some of your credit lines.
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 Mikeoracle

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Re: Financial Review
« Reply #134 on: February 21, 2010, 12:35:44 PM »
What about the high charges and where the payments came from? I read that they can sometimes ask for past few months bank statements to make sure I carry balances that can pay off the size of the charges i put through.
Can I tell them that my "customer" pays me from their bank account direct to my amex? or is that a no-no?