HELP! Amex Closed All My Accounts

Old Aug 6, 19, 5:01 am
  #1  
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Unhappy HELP! Amex Closed All My Accounts

To all with experience with American Express cancelling all of your accounts - I need your help!

I've been with Amex since 2011 and have had several cards over the years (Delta Platinum, Marriott Bonvoy, Marriott Bonvoy Business, etc.).
I was put on financial review because the authorized user has been submitting more than a usual amount of disputes. Once, Amex explained this to me I removed the AU. During my time with Amex, I have always paid my account in full with only 1 late payment (only 2 days) because of the AU again. Yesterday, a different AU paid a payment to their balance (before the due date) and the payment was returned because a check on their account bounced. Amex immediately cancelled all my accounts.

They left a voicemail for my on my house line and I called them back within 5 minutes just to tell me that they cancelled my accounts. They said they can not reinstate them but I can re-apply for another card with no guarantees that I will be accepted. I asked if I paid off all my accounts would they be able to reinstate my accounts and they said thank you but we can not reinstate your accounts.

With all the years, I've been with Amex I have never made any late payments and my credit score ranges from 770-810.

Any advice on what I can do here will be much appreciated!
Mark Kazakov is offline  
Old Aug 6, 19, 5:27 am
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Sounds like you should get rid of the AU!

I'd add, I'm not sure what a 'normal' number of disputes is on a credit card. I run maybe $2M a year on cards, and I don't know if I've ever disputed a charge?
Maybe once, but, not that I can ever recall. What are you buying that you could possibly dispute enough charges?

Also, see my first reply.
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Old Aug 6, 19, 5:32 am
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Hi WestCoastPDX - I did get rid of the AU when I heard about the FR. In the last 3 years, I personally disputed a $150 charge but lost and didn't fight it again. The AU puts about 20-25K a month on the card for personal uses. Once they disputed a good amount of charges, I spoke with Amex and they recommended that I remove them so I did.

I also, didn't see your other response...
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Old Aug 6, 19, 6:07 am
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Originally Posted by Mark Kazakov View Post
Hi WestCoastPDX - I did get rid of the AU when I heard about the FR. In the last 3 years, I personally disputed a $150 charge but lost and didn't fight it again. The AU puts about 20-25K a month on the card for personal uses. Once they disputed a good amount of charges, I spoke with Amex and they recommended that I remove them so I did.

I also, didn't see your other response...
What proportion of the total spend on your account came from the AUís purchases?
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Old Aug 6, 19, 6:08 am
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GUWonder - For one of the cards, it was most of it. For my other cards, I primarily used.
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Old Aug 6, 19, 6:55 am
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Do not think there is anything you can do. Credit card banks can decide if or not they want you to be their customer.

1. You open CCs on behalf of AU and you do not even use some of your own cards.
2. The $20k to $25k per month spending is beyond normal (for most of us) and this from AU alone. It raises more than just one red flag. We do not even know what charges those are. Personal uses?
3. Excessive disputes from both primary and more AUs. With the lost dispute, it means the dispute was not even legit.
4. Bounced payment.
5. Multiple AUs.

It is worse if those AUs are not your immediate family. We do not even know who they are. Clearly you did not manage your AUs well. The AUs ruined your finance. You need to get rid of them and just move on with another CC bank.
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Old Aug 6, 19, 7:01 am
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Card issuers, Amex in this case, are a for-profit business. If issuer is losing money on you or your credit risk profile shows that it will likely do so, it fires you as a customer. That is what likely happened here.

1. Disputes. Whether by you or an AU does not matter. Those cost Amex a small fortune and require manual processing. Disputes ought to be rare in normal usage.
2. Insufficient funds - That is a huge red flag. People who write checks when they lack the funds to do so are committing a fraud and if they don't pay now, raise the chance of it happening again.

Above and beyond all of that is your entire risk profile, which seems odd and very high.

Forget Amex and move on. Next time, use AU's for the purpose which they are intended and closely monitor their activities.
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Old Aug 6, 19, 7:34 am
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  • You ran excessive balances
  • You paid via 3rd party checks
  • A 3rd party check bounced
  • You had excessive disputes
  • You had a late payment
Amex deems you to be a huge risk to them and they're not wrong. The disconnect is that you don't feel like you did all these things, your AU did. Even in your OP, you claim to have never made a late payment even though you admitted to it earlier in the post. But of course it was "because of the AU again". I echo the earlier comments: learn from this and move on.
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Old Aug 6, 19, 8:29 am
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All of the replies make sense, and are good reasons for Amex to cancel you.

But one combination of factors seems especially suspicious: You've got multiple AU's (at least two - were there more, currently or in the past?) AND "they" are the ones "causing trouble".

This suggests several concerns, mostly involving, "Who ARE these AU's?"
You don't seem to be in frequent contact, in addition to their being "problems" for Amex.

If they are paying their own bills, why don't they have their own accounts, perhaps guaranteed by you, IF you really trust them... and if not, why are they AU's?

Anytime we've had AU's, the bill has been paid with the primary, including the AU charges (but perhaps this isn't the norm??).
But our AU's have always been people like a spouse or adult (or almost adult) children. That is, they were people we knew very well, and we were also aware of their use of the card. (Even for children away at school, we could track their usage; no surprises...to us, and certainly not to Amex or other card vendor.)
For occasional others, there were occasional *separate* accounts (including joint), but they didn't have access to "MY* account.

If the others were indeed appropriate business users, why not give them separate accounts (whether labelled as "corporate cards" or not)?
Then, for example, the disputes, etc., would not have directly affected *your* account.

All of the above might make the "AU's" seem like some sort of sketchy arrangement...and that is probably a huge red flag of its own.

But mostly, it was YOUR account, and you let it get out of control, more than once, and in more than one way.

GC
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Old Aug 6, 19, 8:58 am
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I have one suggestion for the OP. He mentioned there were outstanding balances. Pay them off in full immediately.

About 20 years ago a friend got into financial reversals and ended up having their credit card accounts closed and sold to collection agencies. Visa/Mastercard/etc sold their accounts to regular bill collectors. AX sold their debt to a debt collector from He!!. Massive numbers of phone calls from mean aggressive nasty people. AX appears to have a corporate philosophy of "If we have to close your account, we are going to punish you for forcing us to do such a thing." Perhaps since then they had a change in corporate policy and become good Christians. Perhaps not. Don't find out.
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Old Aug 6, 19, 9:49 am
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Get the Amex accounts paid in full and after some time ó perhaps measured in years ó apply for Amex cards again.

I know a very high credit score person whose Amex card account was shut down for no apparent reason ó other than perhaps there being some very old Amex account default (as in over a decade earlier from the account closures) for the account holder or an AU (perhaps on the AUís own account) ó but a few years later the person and their AUs had multiple, new Amex card accounts. Never did figure out what exactly caused the forced account closure, but it definitely didnít have to do with chargebacks, bounced checks, or extensive use of the cardsí benefits for purposes beside the loyalty program aspects of the cards.

Having AUs doing way more spend on an account than the primary account holder can be a flag, but that isnít a show stopper if Amexís concerns are addressed by an Amex-demanded financial review.

Last edited by GUWonder; Aug 6, 19 at 9:55 am
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Old Aug 6, 19, 9:52 am
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How much was your credit limit each month to be able to charge $20-25K consistently? Did the charges go over your limit?

Was the AU a family member? Even though my husband and I each have cards where we are the other's AU, I'm the one who does most of the shopping/buying/travel reservations so most charges are in my name, now I'm wondering if I need to be concerned?
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Old Aug 6, 19, 9:55 am
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I appreciate your response. Let me clarify a few things...

My balances were always paid and was only reaching it's limit on one card.
I never paid via 3rd party check. The AU user paid via his bank account and one of the checks they deposited bounced which caused non-sufficient funds.
The late payment was once in the last 8 years by 2 days.
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Old Aug 6, 19, 9:59 am
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Originally Posted by Eujeanie View Post

Was the AU a family member? Even though my husband and I each have cards where we are the other's AU, I'm the one who does most of the shopping/buying/travel reservations so most charges are in my name, now I'm wondering if I need to be concerned?
This is not normally a problem for spouses using the same Amex accounts that are paid on time without issue. If there is an Amex concern related to AU spend and account use, Amex seems way more likely to demand a financial review than to close an account. At least thatís the experience for my family where an AU on an account can be doing the vast majority of the spend on the account while the primary account holder barely uses the card themselves for purchases.
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Old Aug 6, 19, 10:00 am
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The outstanding balances are always paid in full on the due date. I always pay the remaining or statement balance on the or before the due date. I made two payments yesterday as two of the cards have payments due this week.
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