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 996449 times)

Offline Wolf

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #930 on: January 22, 2012, 01:27:18 AM »
If you have another card by them try to use it, if its blocked or on hold then you will know you're fr.

Offline robi

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #931 on: January 22, 2012, 01:41:22 AM »
If you have another card by them try to use it, if its blocked or on hold then you will know you're fr.
don't. Am an AU though
"I'd rather be hated for who I am, then loved for who I'm not"

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #932 on: January 22, 2012, 03:22:05 AM »
Is paying your bill with a check out of someone's account a trigger, or only ACH transfers?
I think it is, especially large amounts. It'll at least by an issue if something else triggers an FR and then they notice that.

Anyone know why payment by/from another individual is an FR trigger? What doesn't AMEX like about that?

Offline Saver2000

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #933 on: January 22, 2012, 03:25:14 AM »
Anyone know why payment by/from another individual is an FR trigger? What doesn't AMEX like about that?

Because then Amex assumes that someone (else, besides the card holder)  is doing the spending on your cc.

Offline AsherO

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #934 on: January 22, 2012, 03:26:14 AM »
Anyone know why payment by/from another individual is an FR trigger? What doesn't AMEX like about that?

Perhaps for the same reason I stated above.
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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #935 on: January 22, 2012, 03:26:34 AM »
Because then Amex assumes that someone (else, besides the card holder)  is doing the spending on your cc.
I think they fear you're spending for someone else and if that person doesn't pay then they'll be out the money.
If they fear you're spending for someone else who might not pay back, why aren't they afraid of AU's?

Offline AsherO

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #936 on: January 22, 2012, 03:28:26 AM »
If they fear you're spending for someone else who might not pay back, why aren't they afraid of AU's?

Interesting question, I don't know the answer to it. During my recent FR (obligatory  :'( :'() they clearly told me they fear I won't pay when I told them I use my cards for household expenses that other people chip in for.
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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #937 on: January 22, 2012, 03:30:57 AM »
During my recent FR (obligatory  :'( :'() they clearly told me they fear I won't pay when I told them I use my cards for household expenses that other people chip in for.
...while at the same time whenever they have you on the phone they try to stuff in another AU into your account. Ironic, no?

Offline Saver2000

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #938 on: January 22, 2012, 03:33:18 AM »
If they fear you're spending for someone else who might not pay back, why aren't they afraid of AU's?

They sure do. When I was fr'ed they told me that that was one of the triggers.

I barely used the card and the AU was doing a most of the spending on the card. The fr rep told me that amex extended credit to me based on my credit worthiness - not my AU's. So how do they know that he's going to be able to pay the bill every mobth.

Offline AsherO

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #939 on: January 22, 2012, 03:36:52 AM »
...while at the same time whenever they have you on the phone they try to stuff in another AU into your account. Ironic, no?

Different departments. I say this all the time:

But like I say, these banks have different departments which sometimes have contradictory priorities/objectives.

The answer to your question about the 75k CL is simple: The dept. that approves the CL isn't the same one that does the AA/FRs. As I often say, the various departments have different (and often contradictory) objectives.

Yup. As I like to say, large corporations typically have multiple departments which often have conflicting priorities, this is especially true with banks.

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #940 on: January 22, 2012, 03:37:55 AM »
They sure do. When I was fr'ed they told me that that was one of the triggers.

I barely used the card and the AU was doing a most of the spending on the card. The fr rep told me that amex extended credit to me based on my credit worthiness - not my AU's. So how do they know that he's going to be able to pay the bill every mobth.
I can understand that. In your case the AU was doing most of the spending.

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #941 on: January 22, 2012, 06:43:56 PM »
Because then Amex assumes that someone (else, besides the card holder)  is doing the spending on your cc.
(they do  fear extending credit) but they olso fear that you cant make the payment (oto dont have money) and your borrowing from a friend to make your payments,

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #942 on: January 22, 2012, 06:50:59 PM »
It's widely reported that prepaying an account is an FR trigger. Can anyone explain why? I assume the logic behind an FR is that they are getting concerned that you may be a credit risk. So if you've got the cash to prepay an account, doesn't that indicate to them that you're less of a risk?
some times there is no a clear explanation why its a risk its more like "irregular  activity" just doesnt look right something must be going on thats making you do it. this month you may have the cash but soon you may not they want to close your acc before that happens

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #943 on: January 22, 2012, 06:53:55 PM »
Thanks, makes sense. And I guess why some CC companies (e.g. Chase) don't allow prepaying.
its not that they dont allow it. it just wont up your credit line, i dont see a direct connection.imho

Offline Saver2000

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Re: Amex Financial Review
« Reply #944 on: January 22, 2012, 06:55:29 PM »
(they do  fear extending credit) but they olso fear that you cant make the payment (oto dont have money) and your borrowing from a friend to make your payments,

It seems you missed this post

They sure do. When I was fr'ed they told me that that was one of the triggers.

I barely used the card and the AU was doing a most of the spending on the card. The fr rep told me that amex extended credit to me based on my credit worthiness - not my AU's. So how do they know that he's going to be able to pay the bill every mobth.