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 996967 times)

Offline Dan

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #600 on: September 03, 2011, 09:14:38 PM »
Bottom line: I got a FR notice after opening a few cards, and my tax last year (and my income) is much lower than this year. Should I send in the form? Is there another way around this? Would be a real shame to lose the 180k points pending...
Tell them that.  They will also take pay stubs and bank statements into consideration.
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 smart brit

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #601 on: September 08, 2011, 03:23:17 AM »
bh i got the phone call from amex saying that all my cards are available for use again but they put a limit on one of my personal cards but now i have another spg business card that i didnt activate yet do u guys think i should activate it???

Offline Avid Reader

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #602 on: September 08, 2011, 11:30:53 PM »
bh i got the phone call from amex saying that all my cards are available for use again but they put a limit on one of my personal cards but now i have another spg business card that i didnt activate yet do u guys think i should activate it???
Congrats! Sounds like you're safe now. Maximum, they'll just put a limit on the biz one too.

Offline Yos

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #603 on: September 09, 2011, 08:06:00 PM »
Safe!
After 2 weeks of back and forth with them, they finally realized that I didn't file for taxes for the year that they wanted to see (I was a dependent), so they said to just send in 3 bank statements.
They put a spending limit on the cards, but it doesn't really bother me, and now I can still get my signup bonus :)

Offline ChMo

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #604 on: September 10, 2011, 12:59:47 AM »
Safe!
After 2 weeks of back and forth with them, they finally realized that I didn't file for taxes for the year that they wanted to see (I was a dependent), so they said to just send in 3 bank statements.
They put a spending limit on the cards, but it doesn't really bother me, and now I can still get my signup bonus :)

Sweeet!  Good to hear of your F/R success!

Offline Swizard210

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Amex Financial Review
« Reply #605 on: September 10, 2011, 01:43:21 AM »
Safe!
After 2 weeks of back and forth with them, they finally realized that I didn't file for taxes for the year that they wanted to see (I was a dependent), so they said to just send in 3 bank statements.
They put a spending limit on the cards, but it doesn't really bother me, and now I can still get my signup bonus :)

Congrats! I'm sure you're very relieved!

Offline dans fan

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #606 on: September 10, 2011, 09:57:40 PM »
Safe!
After 2 weeks of back and forth with them, they finally realized that I didn't file for taxes for the year that they wanted to see (I was a dependent), so they said to just send in 3 bank statements.
They put a spending limit on the cards, but it doesn't really bother me, and now I can still get my signup bonus :)
would you mind sharing 1) about how much was you ending bal in the statment you sent ? 2) how much waent thru the acc in that statment (how much was deposited and withdrawn)?

Offline ashers

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #607 on: September 11, 2011, 05:00:23 PM »
Wooooooooops
Grandma came to Israel, did some spending on her card and triggered an FR
so add Israel to the FR trigger list
it CAN be done!

Offline elikay

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #608 on: September 11, 2011, 05:14:56 PM »
Its there already.

Offline sky121

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #609 on: September 11, 2011, 06:10:53 PM »
Wooooooooops
Grandma came to Israel, did some spending on her card and triggered an FR
so add Israel to the FR trigger list

If you call to tell them beforehand you are going to be spending does that help prevent it?
"Not all who wander are lost"

Offline Yos

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #610 on: September 14, 2011, 09:03:41 AM »
would you mind sharing 1) about how much was you ending bal in the statment you sent ? 2) how much waent thru the acc in that statment (how much was deposited and withdrawn)?
I had to send in 3 months worth of bank statements. The average balance was around $3,000 and I deposited about $2-3k per month for 2 of the months and the other month 18k.
I received a letter from them saying that they put a limit on the account because the average balance was too low.
Just happy they didn't close my accounts and make me lose my 220,000 MR points and 35,000 Starwood points.

Offline fetcher

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #611 on: September 14, 2011, 06:21:59 PM »
Just curious.  Is Amex doing FR on people within certain age group?  For the people who got FR'd can you give us your age limit?  20's, 30's 40's 50's and etc.

Offline dans fan

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #612 on: September 14, 2011, 10:45:59 PM »
I had to send in 3 months worth of bank statements. The average balance was around $3,000 and I deposited about $2-3k per month for 2 of the months and the other month 18k.
I received a letter from them saying that they put a limit on the account because the average balance was too low.
Just happy they didn't close my accounts and make me lose my 220,000 MR points and 35,000 Starwood points.
tks
  20's, 30's 40's 50's and etc.

yes. yes. yes. yes. ect

Offline sr

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #613 on: October 10, 2011, 09:42:54 AM »
Been with AmEx since 2003 and always got approved with crazy credit limits 25k+ for each new card - never carry too high a balance and always pay on time... Just went to Israel for 3 days and came back to a F/R...

I have no clue what I wrote on my app for income but I usually dont exaggerate too much... Am I better off preemptively canceling some of my cards (2 biz 3 personal) or trying to first go through with the f/r? Will I have a chance to cancel myself if I don't pass the f/r or will they cancel automatically if I don't pass?

Thanks for your help!!

Offline Avid Reader

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #614 on: October 10, 2011, 10:02:32 AM »
Don't cancel the cards. Go through with the FR and give them what they want, you stand a 99% chance of passing. At worst, they would lower you CL, but based on what you're saying, they probably wouldn't even do that.