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 1068103 times)

Offline danR

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #270 on: April 01, 2011, 06:49:52 PM »
My wife and I just got FR'd today for US mint coin purchases. They said their have been a bunch of coin purchases and it was in breach of agreement since they were cash purchases. That is what triggered the FR. Maybe it also had to do with increasing my credit limit on my SPG Biz account from 3,000 to 9,000. Not sure, they said it was the coin purchases and I can not buy anymore coins from the US Mint with my Amex cards.

Now I got to send in that Form 4506T.

They havent spoken to my wife yet, any suggestion on how she should explain coin purchases. I said I was using the coins for its intended purpose.

Any suggestion on how to handle this please help.

Thanks

Offline Chaikel

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #271 on: April 01, 2011, 07:01:53 PM »
My wife and I just got FR'd today for US mint coin purchases. They said their have been a bunch of coin purchases and it was in breach of agreement since they were cash purchases. That is what triggered the FR. Maybe it also had to do with increasing my credit limit on my SPG Biz account from 3,000 to 9,000. Not sure, they said it was the coin purchases and I can not buy anymore coins from the US Mint with my Amex cards.

Now I got to send in that Form 4506T.

They havent spoken to my wife yet, any suggestion on how she should explain coin purchases. I said I was using the coins for its intended purpose.

Any suggestion on how to handle this please help.

Thanks
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Offline rosie5442

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #272 on: April 01, 2011, 07:38:33 PM »
How many coins were you ordering and how do you think they caught u?

Offline danR

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #273 on: April 02, 2011, 08:43:23 PM »
I explained that I used them for its intended use. They said if you used for cash it was in voliation of credit card agreement. Basically anyone who orders coins is in violation of agreement. I probably avg. 3x per month, once every ten days, on SPG Biz and personal that includes multiple authorized users.

I think the only explaination they would take for ordering coins is that you are collector but if you say that then you are in violation of the MInt intended use. So i guess no good answer. Now i got to send in that stupid IRS form. I am done with Mint coins on Amex cards, so I warn anyone else out there doing the samething you so LIMIT you Mint orders on Amex cards, sounds like they are cracking down.


Offline danR

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #274 on: April 02, 2011, 09:17:30 PM »
Does anyone who has been under Amex Financial Review, if you could elect the send it bank statements and pay stub instead of the Form 4506T. I wonder if filling out that Form would raising any flags with IRS which is the last thing in the world I am sure any of us would want.

Offline AsherO

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #275 on: April 02, 2011, 09:22:47 PM »
Does anyone who has been under Amex Financial Review, if you could elect the send it bank statements and pay stub instead of the Form 4506T. I wonder if filling out that Form would raising any flags with IRS which is the last thing in the world I am sure any of us would want.

Wouldn't raise flags with the IRS, but it's your prerogative if you want to share all that tax data with Amex.
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Offline danR

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #276 on: April 02, 2011, 09:42:45 PM »
IS there another option I rather not send them my tax info, who would?, here is the email they sent:


American Express recently requested that you complete and return a tax form called the 4506T in order to conduct a financial review.  The 4506T authorizes American Express to retrieve tax information.  We find the review process to be a necessary requirement in order to conduct our business in a prudent and successful manner. 

Detailed instructions on how to fill out the 4506T are included below as well as in the American Express Fax Cover Sheet.  It is critical that this information be completed correctly and faxed back to us within 5 business days of the date of this email to avoid closure of the account. 

Instructions to help ensure quicker review times
1.   Print out the American Express Fax Cover Sheet
2.   Print out the Blank 4506T Form

Instructions for completing this American Express Fax Cover Sheet
1.  Fill out the FROM field with your name as it appears on your card.
2.  Fill out your 15 digit account number (this is used for internal processing, your account number is not given to a third party)


Instructions for completing the Blank 4506T Form
1.  Please refer to your copy of the tax return you filed for accuracy.   Information you provide must match IRS files, or the documents obtained may be insufficient and your account could be canceled. 
2. Please write legibly by hand.  DO NOT do any of the following: type out the form, write your account number on the 4506T, or make corrections by whiting or crossing out (you must print out a new form).  These will cause the 4506T to be rejected and could result in cancellation.
3.  Complete lines 1-4
4.  Complete line 6. Line 6 must contain the name of the form you filed.  Box 6C should be checked already.
5.  Leave lines 5,7,8 blank
6.  Line 9 must be completed as requested.  Please do not add years not requested.  Use mm/dd/yyyy format. If you are asked to fill in multiple years, please ensure you use the correct format mm/dd/yyyy for each date (place dates on separate lines)
7.  If you filed using a Tax ID instead of your Social Security Number, please put your Tax ID number in the Social Security Number filed.  Names and socials must be on corresponding lines for the IRS to accept this document.
8.  Sign and date the 4506T
 
3.   After completing instructions for the American Express Cover sheet and Blank 4506T Form, return BOTH of the completed forms to: 
     1 800 219 8549 

Once the forms are received, they will be processed in 5-7 business days.  If you have questions regarding your review, please call 1800-230-1289 and enter your account manager's five digit extension (listed at the top of this email) to avoid long wait times. 

Thank you,
The American Express Financial Review Team

Offline elikay

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #277 on: April 02, 2011, 09:50:27 PM »
I know someone who did not send in the right form and they did not accept it. (I think it was the same form just without the T at the end, the one he sent did not cost anything? and it did state his income but they did not accept it, the T one is itemized I believe).

Offline rosie5442

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #278 on: April 03, 2011, 07:10:17 PM »
instead ogf going thru the review what if you just cancel the cards.  Does that have any effect on your credit or credit report?

Offline Cholentfresser

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #279 on: April 03, 2011, 07:19:21 PM »
if u don't have any income and they'll close your account, its for sure better to close it yourself first.
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Offline Monsey

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #280 on: April 03, 2011, 07:28:10 PM »
instead ogf going thru the review what if you just cancel the cards.  Does that have any effect on your credit or credit report?
if you close your accounts then in order to apply for another amex in the future you will have to go through a f/r when applying so it might be worth it to send in your forms and just tell them that if they are going to close your account to tell you first and let you close it yourself. Good luck

Offline YudiG

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #281 on: April 04, 2011, 11:14:14 PM »
oi oi oi

i opened an amex pat, amex gold and starwood for my wife and tried buying $1k in us mint coins and got an F/R....the amex man didn't seem to happy...they want the tax form but as we weren't married her stated IRS income of $8k is nowhere near the 6 digits it is now...

does it just make sense to cancel all the cards now and not bother sending in the form? will they really give us the chance to cancel the cards first in the event they decide to close all accounts? what will be worse for her credit?

oy eibishter!!

Offline Dan

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #282 on: April 04, 2011, 11:42:21 PM »
oi oi oi

i opened an amex pat, amex gold and starwood for my wife and tried buying $1k in us mint coins and got an F/R....the amex man didn't seem to happy...they want the tax form but as we weren't married her stated IRS income of $8k is nowhere near the 6 digits it is now...

does it just make sense to cancel all the cards now and not bother sending in the form? will they really give us the chance to cancel the cards first in the event they decide to close all accounts? what will be worse for her credit?

oy eibishter!!
So was opening 3 cards at the same time the trigger or the coins?  Hmm...

When will you file your taxes?
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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #283 on: April 04, 2011, 11:43:50 PM »
So was opening 3 cards at the same time the trigger or the coins?  Hmm...

When will you file your taxes?
i really hope it was the coins  :-\

Offline Dan

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #284 on: April 04, 2011, 11:50:27 PM »
i really hope it was the coins  :-\
I think either are F/R triggers.  The combo of a trip-app and coins though is definitely a no-no IMHO.  I don't think an AMEX trip-app is safe unless unless you have an income.
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