How to Resolve American Express Bill and AMEX Debt

I have not paid my American Express bill in full and now have a $60,000 AMEX debt that is in collections. Help!

I am the owner of a small trucking company in Texas because of all the rain i have not paid my American Express bill in full. I have been sending $300 a month on a $60,000 bill since June I have been contacted by nation wide credit and told where to get the loan and how much I can pay each month I was never sent any notification that i would be contacted by them and have been called at work once and by cell during working hours. Why am I in collections and what will happen to me?

Read full question
Bill's Answer
4.0
/5.0
(6 Votes)
Bills.com Team
Pro

By

Highlights


  • Contact the original creditor first, even when you receive notice from a collection agency.
  • Attempt to negotiate a temporary low monthly payment or a lump sum settlement.
  • Consider debt settlement or credit counseling -- both can work with American Express.

It is unusual for a person to begin receiving collection calls from a third party collection agency, such as Nationwide Credit, without first receiving written notification from the collection agency. The reason that you are in collection, however, is that you are failing to make the full minimum payments on your American Express Bill and now you have overdue credit card debt. I will explain more in just a moment.

Quick tip #1

  If you are considering some professional help to resolve your debt problems, start with a free consultation with one of Bills.com's pre-screened debt relief partners.

Nationwide Credit

Nationwide Credit is a primary collection agency used by American Express. I would suggest you not make any payments to Nationwide Credit before contacting American Express and confirming that Nationwide is handling your account. You should also contact Nationwide to ask them to send you a written statement of your account, including the balance and the account number.

Quick tip #2

  Concerned about what is appearing on your credit report now? Check your credit report today and get a free credit score instantly.

It is not too Late to Call American Express Directly

If you contact American Express directly, it may be willing to work with you to bring your account current and resume making payments. American Express may be more willing to work with you than the collection agency in helping you establish a payment arrangement you can afford.

Hopefully, your income has improved enough to let you pay more that $300 per month, as that is quite a small payment on a $60,000 account (in fact, it is negligible... your minimum payment on $60,000 is probably over $2,000 per month... and going up with late fees and jacked up interest rates).

Even if you cannot pay more than $300 right now, Amex may be willing to accept the lower payment amount for a few months if you can commit to larger payments once your income has improved.

You do not mention in your question whether or not you communicated with American Express about your financial difficulties before you started making lower monthly payments. If you did not speak with American Express before they referred your account to collections, then you should definitely do so. Even if you did talk to them before they sent your account to Nationwide, it is worth calling American Express again to discuss what you can do to pull your account out of collections and bring the account current.

If American Express will not offer you an affordable payment arrangement directly, you can ask Nationwide what repayment terms they can offer you, as they may be able to work out a payment arrangement with you as well.

If you can raise a lump sum, you may also be able to settle the account with either Amex or the collection agency. For example, if you can raise $20,000, American Express may be willing to accept that amount to resolve the account and forgive the remaining $40,000.

While the settlement amount AMEX will accept will vary depending on the status of the account and your financial circumstances, it is likely that Nationwide or AMEX will accept a settlement on the account if you can raise enough money to offer a reasonable amount.

Consider Debt Settlement

To assist you in negotiating a settlement, you may want to retain the services of a professional debt negotiation firm, which specialize in negotiating settlements for their clients with the creditors.

A settlement agency may be able to establish a payment plan to help you build a lump sum to offer to AMEX as a settlement. There is one major drawback to debt settlement programs. They will significantly damage your credit while in the program and for a period afterward. Given that you are already delinquent, your account has been assigned to a third-party collection agency, and the size of your debt, your credit is likely already severely damaged.

As you are currently unable to afford to pay AMEX, the impact of debt settlement to your credit may be worth the benefit of ridding yourself of the credit card debt. To learn more about various debt resolution options, I encourage you to visit the Bills.com Debt Help page.

Future Considerations

Another issue you must consider when deciding how you should resolve this debt is whether or not you will need this credit to continue operating your business.

If you are able work out a repayment arrangement with AMEX to bring the account current and pay if off, AMEX will likely allow you to maintain your account for future use. However, if you decide to try to settle the account, AMEX will almost certainly close the account.

In addition, the damage to your credit rating caused by not paying the account off in full could cause you significant problems in obtaining future credit from AMEX and from other creditors. If you need credit to operate your business, you probably should work with AMEX to bring the account current, in order to minimize the negative impact of this delinquency.

As mentioned previously, I encourage you to contact AMEX to discuss the options available to you to repay this credit card, hopefully allowing you to maintain the credit you need to successfully operate your business.

I hope this information helps you Find. Learn & Save.

Best,

Bill

Bills.com

147 Comments

Recent Best
1500 characters remaining
  • 35x35
    Feb, 2012
    Mary
    I went through an incredible nightmare with Nationwide! The first crime they committed against me was by using a fraudulent "check" with info they had on record from a previous payment I had made, WITHOUT my permission! I started getting all these bounced checks and looked on my statement, only to find that a payment of $1140 had been taken out of my account. When I viewed the "check"online, there was my "signature" that I NEVER made, nor was there any record of the check number. They simply made one up! Well, you can imagine how shocked I was. Also, considering my former bank, B of A, charged $35 per returned check, not only was I out the $1140, but $350 in returned checks! I first called and reported it to B of A, thinking that since it was fraud (I never gave permission for this payment) they would credit my account and launch an investigation. Wrong! The gal I spoke with, not only didn't credit my account, she didn't even recommend that I file a complaint/dispute! So then I contacted Nationwide and supposedly talked to a "supervisor." He claimed that I indeed gave permission (although the agent in charge of my case was suspiciously gone every time I called) and since I knew that these calls, giving permission, etc., are required by law to be recorded, I asked to HEAR the "permission" I granted. Well, that really got him in a tizzy and sent me to yet another "supervisor," who also claimed I gave permission, although they never allowed me to listen to ANY conversations that I supposedly had with their company. To try and make this nightmare shorter then the months I dealt with Nationwide, I will say that after threats, numerous phone calls, (never the same agent) and dealing with an enormous amount of lies on their part, I finally got my money returned, as well as the $350 from the returned checks, although nothing could be done about the embarrassment and the "bad" record of returned checks that are now on my account. Oh, and this "company" that American Express has the audacity to handle their delinquent accounts, has quite a criminal record as well! I Googled them, only to find out that in 1998, Nationwide Credit, Inc., paid one of the largest civil penalties, $1,000,000 (yes, that's right, a MILLION) for charges of repeatedly violating the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Included in these violations were harassing consumers; made false and misleading representations; failed to send required validation notices; failed to verify debts, when requested by consumers; and made impermissible third party contacts regarding consumers debts. Many of these charges were the same charges the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) made against Nationwide in 1992. The consent filed in 1992 also prohibited violations of the FDCPA and required Nationwide to pay a $100,000 civil penalty. Included in Nationwide Credit Inc.'s violations, after 1992's fine are; Used obscene or profane language to consumers; caused the consumers phone to ring, or engaged a person in phone conversations, repeatedly or continuously, with the intent to annoy, abuse, or harass a consumer; falsely implied that failure to pay the debt could result in arrest, imprisonment, or garnishment of wages; threatening to take action, such as a lawsuit against consumer; continued to try to collect debts after consumers disputed them in writing, and before Nationwide verified the debts. I would also like to add, that during this debacle, I repeatedly tried to talk to someone in their Atlanta, Georgia office. The one they advertise/use as their "home" office. Well, that was another one of their deceptions. Every number I called, in the USA, was rerouted to Mumbai, India! And as far as I can tell, there is no US office, or at least none that answer the phone numbers given for contact. When I asked their representatives in Mumbai, how to get in touch with someone from Nationwide, here in the US, I was of course given a number that sent me back to Mumbai. In addition to everything else, Nationwide took over a month to send me a reimbursement check (initially they claimed UPS and even gave me several tracking numbers, which of course were ALL invalid). Then a month later, they had the complete temerity to call and offer me a "settlement amount" to clear my debt! I won't use the language I used, on the agent who made that ludicrous phone call, and thankfully, I've not heard from them again. I will NEVER own another AmEx card, and I recommend everyone I know, to cut theirs up! Any American company, who would hire Nationwide Inc., especially after their 1992 $100,000 fine and the 1998 $1 Million dollar fine, for their outrageous behavior, toward AmEx clients, or anyone for that matter, is offensive in the worst possible way. Just imagine if you will, an innocent, elderly person, receiving a call from Nationwide Credit Inc., using not only profanity, but threatening them with prison! Can't you just see them writing a check, out of shear terror? It makes me physically ill to think what this company does to consumers, and that they are even in business, with their record, STILL! Even AFTER the 1998 fine! Here is what I recommend, to anyone who is abused, lied to, not given requested information regarding your "debt" or anything else, that is suspicious or denied per your request, from ANY credit collection company. Immediately notify the FTC (Federal Trade Commission) @ (877) 382-4357, TTY: 1-866-653-4261. Also, PLEASE document EVERY phone call with date, time, agent calling, and what is said. I wouldn't bother telling Nationwide (or any other credit collection company) about your plan. I did and it didn't have any effect. Probably because the FTC doesn't have any authority outside the USA. Although, most debt collection companies are American owned, so you will get results and of course the more complaints, the faster the action against them and the bigger the penalties too! Oh, and according to law, if you tell them to cease and desist with any further calls, they are required by law to STOP any further phone calls! Won't work with Nationwide, probably, but will with the majority of debt collectors. Keep in mind, the law is on YOUR SIDE! Go to the FTC website (www.ftc.gov) and you will find a list of your rights, with almost any industry that is doing business in the US. Good Luck to ALL of the abused consumers out there and don't give up hope! And if you have ANY doubts, as to the validity of their claims, whatever you do, PLEASE DO NOT GIVE THEM A CENT! That would work against you and could imply that you indeed DO owe them money! Not to mention, they would then have your checking account and routing numbers, to use against you, like they did to me. Keep in mind as well, if you DO OWE them money (who doesn't in this economy)? 99% of collection agencies will accept A LOT less then you actually owe, without any negative effects to your credit score, as long as you get the arrangement IN WRITING, SIGNED ORIGINAL, etc., for any future questions! Before the economy went to hell, I owed AmEx roughly $4K and their last offer was around $600! Generally speaking, the collection companies have bought your debt, much less then you originally owed, so they want to get as much of their money back as they can. Try and get them to make the original settlement offer (then you have an idea of where they are coming from), then just INTIMATE that you MIGHT be able to go as high as 25% of their first offer. If you don't have to peel the debt collector off the ceiling, then you have a good idea of what you can pay. Just make sure once an agreement is made, get it in writing, with proof of the debt being removed from your credit report immediately upon receipt of settlement money, without any negative comments regarding settlement. Again, GOOD LUCK!
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Nov, 2011
    WS
    I just received a email from American Express stating that my account has been closed. The reason was that i was not able to pay the balance due of $6000 in full payment in four months. I was paying them every month and the remaining balance was 1600$ till date which i am able to make the payment at end of this month. I found that they have sent my account to collection agency. is this going to effect my credit score? Should i make the remaining payment directly to AMX or collection agency.Thanks.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Nov, 2011
      Bill
      It is likely the case that the collection agency is contracted by AmEx to collect on the account, as opposed to the collection agency owning the account. You can try calling AmEx to make the payment arrangements and if they won't accept payment, then call the collection agency.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2011
    SG
    I closed my account in 2009 with a balance owed. Paid every month on time whether it be the minimum or more .... then in the Fall of 2010 I found out my husband's company was being purchased so we started getting our affairs in order, expecting the worse...I tried contacting AMX to see what assistance might be offered in the event my income was not enough (my husband's position was executive) also keep in mind .. I never asked for any debt forgiveness but inquired if with provided proof they would lower my interest rate from the teens.. down to a single digit.. so that I could still continue to pay the debt that I owed but without the excruciating ridiculous high interest rate.. and mind you I stopped charging way before I closed the account back in 2009 ... I was met with resistance, lack of service and a series of uneducated service representatives.... who at the end of my call left me exhausted and wondering should I really wonder about this so much if no one will listen? They told me repeatedly there is nothing to offer you .. I am current by the way .. on a closed account .. non active for years ... but no one cares that I am actually trying to tell American Express that I may be at risk for imminent default and seek assistance in advance to avoid this....no assistance.... I then filed a BBB complaint after repeated calls ... no response. Here we are in October and it has now been 8 full months of my husband being out of work. After 11 years of employment at the same job he was denied unemployment due to his job being completed... and it's just me .. trying to pay our BASIC .. and I mean BASIC bills ... We have sold everything .. cut off stuff not needed and we are selling possessions too .. all the extra's .. I have called American Express several times recently since as of the end of September I am officially unable to pay the monthly minimum at the 17.99 % .. ( i could afford to pay monthly at a single digit interest rate ) remember I closed this account in july 2009 and stopped charging way before then.. they asked me to agree to pay THE SAME MONTHLY MINIMUM PAYMENT I AM UNABLE TO PAY NOW ... FOR 12 MONTHS WITH NO INTEREST BUT LATE CHARGES OR SOMETHING .............AND REFUSED TO SEND IT TO ME IN WRITING TO REVIEW BEFORE I WOULD AGREE ...THEY SAID I MUST AGREE -- BEFORE I READ THE DETAILS ---- BEFORE THEY CAN SEND ME AN AGREEMENT ..........................I now refuse... this is the reason Americans are in trouble because when they want to do the right thing they get the short stick .. I will be quite honest here ..........my situation is one of millions .. and my situation is nothing compared to the others.. I am sure of it but no one cares ....
    1 Votes

    • 35x35
      Oct, 2011
      Bill
      Maybe you would benefit from speaking with a credit counseling service or debt settlement firm. I believe the credit counseling interest rate for AmEx is 9.99%. It may be able to lower your monthly payment, too.

      Debt settlement could lower the total amount you owe, though you need to be able to make the monthly payment the debt settlement program demands. You don't pay a fee to the debt settlement company, if you choose the right one, until after your account is settled.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Oct, 2011
      SG
      Why am I not able to pay them directly at a 9.9% interest rate? I don't have any other credit cards or outstanding bills .....only my normal monthly electric, water, insurance and such ....I don't understand when you contact a company and are willing to work with them in a reasonable fashion that they would rather ignore me and allow default...I am sure too that I am only speaking with the "front office" if you will of American Express ... the customer service representatives that are only trained with the collection model and will fail their call if they actually listen and hear the real problem ....
      1 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2011
    sal
    I have Amex since 2006, always pay on time. Recently I received a letter saying that the have put a limit of $16,200 on my account and that I can not use the Pay Over Time feature anymore, I use a platinum card. What I'm scared of is that next month they will ask me to pay all my balance in full which is about $14,000 or to pay a huge minimum payment of more that what I'm used to which is about $2,000 a month. I'm scared that if I'm not able to make the payments that they will go and put a lien on my car or even levy or freeze my bank account. Any advice on what should I do? Thanks.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Oct, 2011
      Bill
      The creditor may have decided to lower your limit for a variety of reasons, some having nothing to do with you. For instance, it could be trying to reduce its risk exposure across a wide number of accounts. Sometimes creditors reduce credit limits when customers balances creep up each month toward the limit.

      You may be able to close your account and keep the same terms that you had. If you want to continue to keep the card open, then you have to accept the new terms.

      The Credit Card Act of 2009 addresses what happens when a creditor hikes a customer's interest rate or increases fees, but not what happens when the credit limit is reduced. If your interest rate was hiked, you can close the card and keep the interest rate at the current level, but there is no similar provision listed for a credit limit reduction.

      The Fair Credit Reporting Act does address the issue somewhat. If your limit is reduced due to information on your credit report or based on an evaluation of your credit score, then the creditor must notify you of this.

      I suggest that you contact AmEx and ask what terms they will require for minimum payments. I believe they can increase and potentially double your minimum payment, but I don't believe they can ask for payment in full. If they ask for a payment that you don't feel you can make each month, try to negotiate better terms.

      From my experience, it is highly unlikely they will move to sue you, without giving you some sort of payment option. The only way they can get a levy against your wages or bank accounts or file a lien against you is if they first sue you and obtain a judgment.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2011
    Ted
    Due to a failed business, two of our Amex accounts went to Zwicker. After a short time of negotiating, we were able to settle $34K for $10K. Always had a great relationship with Amex and made full payments until our income significantly reduced. Zwicker people were professional and accommodating and helped us avoid a BR.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Sep, 2011
      Bill
      That is great to hear. It is nice when a collections process (even a legal collections process with a professional firm like Zwicker and Associates) is handled amicably. We applaud you on managing your way through the process and congrats on becoming debt free!
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2011
    Vanessa
    Hi, I just want know what's gonna happen if I can pay my American express in full amount? Owe 2,000
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2011
    heidi
    Amex gave me a cc while in college. knowing full well i was a fulltime student. I racked up a bill about $7k, (1/3rd was finance charges/fees) went to collections and its been 12 years since the account has been closed. Silly me, tried to open a small starter cc with Amex 4 years ago. They mailed me a letter immediately that they are willing to re-instate me and that they reduced the pay off amount to $30%. I called them up to get more info, but they only wanted the 30%, about $2500, paid in full over the phone. I said I couldnt do that right now and hung up. Now that I can afford to pay them off the 30% in full, can I still use the offer from 4 years ago (even though i dont have the letter anymore)? I do want to be reisntated b.c my job only uses Amex corporate cards. I was denied when i was hired, my company does not bond. You have to pay the balance in full, yourself; and then be reimbursed by the employer.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jul, 2011
      Bill
      I cannot speak for American Express. I doubt any judge would force Party A to honor an offer it gave Party B X years ago, unless the offer contained language stating, "This offer is good for X years." Contact American Express and open negotiations. What have you got to lose?
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jul, 2011
      Katie
      I have racked up an $8,000 AmEx bill. I am a not a US resident or Citizen. I have 2 houses in the US one without mortgage and one with negative equity. My account has been passed onto collections and the company is calling the numbers on both houses which have renters in them Yesterday they called my mother in Europe looking for me. I want to come to some sort of settlement but at the minute I am in the process of moving countries and changing jobs in Europe and I will not be be able to get any mail from them as I have not secured my new address yet. I have read terrible things about the collection agency GC and I afraid to ring them to get abuse and as I have not secured my new address yet I'm sure they will not be understanding of this. I also will not be in the position to start paying back for at least a month. Should I jut let it sit for now and maybe the longer it goes on they will accept a lower payment? Any advise would be appreciated.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jul, 2011
      Bill
      You could be sued for the debt, which could lead to a lien on your homes. When you don't have the money to pay for a settlement, that you it seems pointless to try to negotiate one.

      It seems the best course is to try to save up some money as quickly as possible and then call and negotiate a settlement. While it is possible that the longer you wait, the lower the amount that they collection agency may accept, it is also possible that the longer you wait the likelier you are to be sued.
      1 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2011
    Tom
    I have an AMEX Delta card with about 10k outstanding. The account has been in good standing for many years but I'm having trouble making the minimum payments. I called Amex and they offered to settle the account for 75% of the owed amount. The problem is I only have 5k that I could possibly tap for this. Do you think they may be able to better their offer if I try negotiating?
    1 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jun, 2011
      Bill
      The credit card issuers negotiate settlements on a case-by-case basis. In some instances, readers report paying 40 cents on the dollar to original creditors. Others report that 60 cents is the best they can do. Keep negotiating, and consider sending the person on the other side of the table your bank statement showing how much you have available.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2011
    RODITAS
    MY FRIEND JUST PASSED AWAY LAST WEEK AND SHE HAS AN AMERICAN EXPRESS CARD. WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO HER UNPAID STATEMENTS?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      May, 2011
      Bill
      A decedent's assets (things he or she owned and rights he or she had) and liabilities (unpaid bills and obligations) are called the decedent's estate. In a process called probate the estate's executor will tally all of the assets and liabilities. If the assets are greater than the liabilities, all of the decedent's bills and obligations are paid. The remainder is distributed according to the decedent's will or the laws of the decedent's state of residence. If the decedent's liabilities are larger than the assets, then the executor will follow the state distribution rules. This is a simplified explanation, but it conveys the general idea.

      Some unscrupulous collection agents will telephone the spouse or family of the decedent and say they owe the decedent's debts. As discussed above, this claim is almost certainly untrue. If you receive such a call, refer the collection agent to the executor, and do not pay the caller a dime unless the executor explains why you owe the debt.

      In summary, the decedent's estate must go through the state's probate process. Consult with a lawyer in the decedent's state who has probate experience to learn how to begin this process.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      May, 2011
      steve
      Hello. Years ago my wife added her brother to amex gold. He run up 17K and stopped paying. We could not afford payments either and it went in charge off status in 2006. We do not recall who called back then but she does not receive any calls to our current phone or mail. We need this resolved somehow, her credit is not too bad, middle fico 690. Should we call amex to settle? Any ideas? Much thanks
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      May, 2011
      Bill
      American Express almost certainly sold or assigned this debt by now. Call American Express to learn who has the right to collect the debt. Alternatively, get a copy of your credit report. It may contain information about the party with rights to your collection account.

      You wrote that the debt was from 'years ago.' If the debt went into charge of status in 2006 and you have not made any payment on it since, the debt may have expired due to the statue of limitations. If that is the case, you won't have to pay the debt. That won't eliminate it from the credit report, but will allow you to decide if it is more important to pay the debt to improve the credit score or to not pay the debt and suffer the harm to the credit score. Given the size of the debt, I would speak to an attorney about the statute of limitation for debt in Texas.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      May, 2011
      Nick
      I currently owe about 25k on a personal Amex charge card. I also have a separate Corp. Amex charge card through my employer. Due to a temporary change in income it will be impossible to pay off the balance of the personal card at the end of this month. Ideally I would want to get a 6-12 month payment plan with the goal things will be back to normal sooner than later and pay it off well within the plan. Is this something they would agree to? Should I request a hardship plan before or after the billing period is due? Will they negotiate a smaller monthly payment with the expectation of a lump sum at some point during the period of repayment? For a balance of that size what is typically the smallest monthly payment accepted? How would something like this be reflected on a credit report? Will this impact my ability to use my corp. card for work?
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      May, 2011
      Bill
      How American Express handles the type of situation you described is a bit of a mystery. Some Bills.com readers report its customer service representatives will negotiate a reasonable repayment plan to help long-time customers get back on track. Other Bills.com readers report the company has a hair-trigger to send delinquent accounts to rabid collection agents.

      Your only reasonable option is to call, explain your situation, and emphasize your desire to repay the debt as quickly as possible. Please return here to share what you learned.
      1 Votes

    • 35x35
      May, 2011
      Noor
      hi, I have debt with American Express for $16,531 in my business account (it dont show on my personal credit report,why?) and I stopped make payment since aug.2007 due to my business failure...recently I received a letter from NCO debt collector company and they said I agreed to settle my account in the amount of $1654.00 (*which never happenend but I like the offer).. so, what should I do? do you think this is for real? do I ask for validation for debt? I want to accept this offer and pay them but how can I make an agreement so I can make them to clear this debt from my credit report..
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      May, 2011
      Bill
      How do you know that the collection agent in question actually owns the right to collect your debt? The answer is to validate the debt! The offer of 10 cents on the dollar is a good one, financially, if legitimate. It is a terrible offer if it is a scam.
      2 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2011
    Tim
    I have about $7000 on my Amex Costco and $47,000 on my Amex Gold card. These are company expenses and for the first time my company told me they couldn't pay me on time. I freaked out and called Amex for the last 30 days regarding what happens if I don't pay. They kept scaring me talking about the card being frozen and the 2.99% interest fee at the 60th day. They said they had no payment plans to offer and that I wasn't eligible for pay over time. This really affected my sleep during the last 3 weeks. I started thinking bankruptcy, bad credit, etc. Last night I discovered this stream of posts when I was searching for "Amex Payment Plans". This gave me some confidence and today I called Amex one more time (27 days late) and they finally offered me the hardship program. For the Costco balance, they offered 0% for 6 months and 9.99% for the next 6 months. For the gold card they offered 12 months at $4060 at 0 interest and the 2.99% 60 day penalty would be waived (Over $1300 in interest!) and my credit would stay ok. They explained that I must stick to the due date or else all the negative things would happen. I am so thankful for these posts which really saved me and my credit!
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2011
    john
    Why doesn't Small Business Gold Charge Card (sole proprietorship) ever show on personal credit report? Account is not past due yet, but will be 10k past due in 1 week with another 20k of charges on next statement = 30k. Based on comments I have read, it looks like I should offer 6k working up to 12k...or should I ask for 5 yr interest free plan?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2011
      Bill
      Maybe the account does not show on your personal credit report because it is tied to a business account that you opened using your EIN#, and not your Social Security number?

      Most creditors will not accept a negotiated settlement, until you are severely delinquent. Until then, the creditors' goal is to get you back into the monthly payment relationship that profits them the most. As to how much you should offer and whether or not you should ask for a lump sum settlement or a structured settlement that is paid on monthly for a specified period depends on your financial means. If you can afford to fund a lump sum settlement, that is preferable. If you don't have the money available to fund a lump sum settlement, then work towards a structured settlement with monthly payments.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2011
      john
      While it looks like I will have to let the account sit for 60 days...no EIN#..I wonder if they lost records as it was opened 2003 but shows 1995 on the card??
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2011
      Bill
      I hope that you're able to negotiate a favorable settlement. Remember, if you do reach a settlement, that you will end up with a 1099-C for the amount of debt that is forgiven. Check with your tax preparer, when you do your tax return for the year the debt is forgiven, to see if you have to declare the forgiven debt as income or if you can use the IRS Form 982 to avoid declaring it.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2011
      john
      OT: What has been your experience (% reduction) on other cards - Chase, Citibank, Capital One, Sears??
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2011
      Bill
      My experience is that there is no fixed amount at which any individual creditor settles. Creditors can and do treat different customers differently; they can accept a low dollar settlement from Ms. Jones and refuse to accept any settlement from Ms. Smith. My general advice is to start negotiating at around 25 to 30 cents on the dollar. Please report back and let us know how things work out for you.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2011
      John
      Will let you know...I have received the standard responses so far since accounts current. I am willing to pay more now (40%) to lump sum settle prior to delinquency but will lower offer after (which I advised them)...Thks
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2011
      john
      LAST QUESTION: Upon reaching a settlement, will I be able to demand that the CC company or collection agency remove any record of account from credit report? Or, will I have to settle on "paid in full, zero balance" language??
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2011
      Bill
      What will be reported to the credit bureaus is one item you can try to negotiate with the creditor. You can try to negotiate a 'pay for delete,' where your payment is made in exchange for the creditor agreeing to delete the account from your credit report. The creditor may refuse to do this, but you have nothing to lose by asking for it and negotiating to achieve it.

      If the creditor does not agree, then the account will likely show as "$0 balance, paid in full," "$0 balance, settled in full," or "$0 balance, not paid as agreed." The $0 balance is more important, to most people, than the notation that accompanies it.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2011
      John
      When do you start negotiating - 30/60/90 days past due? If you start too early does that signal to CC anything ie. in a rush to do the right thing so hold on the line with this customer?? Since as you said they treat everyone differently...
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2011
      Bill
      Most creditors will not negotiate until you are behind on your payments. Approaching them as soon as you're delinquent is fine. I think it is as much about how you approach them as when. If you contact them when you are 30 days late, the creditor could be amenable to settlement, if you can explain how you are experiencing a financial hardship that makes staying current on your account impossible. Don't pay on a settlement until you have a letter that makes clear that your reduced pay-off will clear out your account entirely. You can also attempt to negotiate a pay for delete.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2011
      john
      After reading several different threads here, it seems that between 120-179 days past due is when the CC start to make the 20-35% settlement offers. Why endure the repeated stress of negotiating/taking their phone calls until that time? In fact, it may be a better strategy to show a lack of interest (not respond to their calls/emails) that brings the CC to make better settlement offers sooner rather than later?? Curious as to what you have seen...thanks.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2011
      Bill
      You are on the right track. Details vary, but credit card issuers have a call centers that deal with delinquent accounts that are not yet charged off. The staff at these call centers work from a script that reads essentially, "You pay us now, please." At approximately 180 to 240 days, the card issuer must charge off the account. Charge-off does not mean the debt is forgiven or canceled, but means the card issuer must move the account to the bad debt line on its general ledger. Once an account is charged off, the account moves to a different call center or, optionally, to a collection agent. Here is where cardholders speak to people who follow different scripts, and can negotiate settlements at significantly less than 100% of the face value of the debt.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2011
      Bernadette
      About 3 years ago, I got an AmEx and put my mother on the account. She ended up spending $40k on it and since then has not been able to pay back this amount. I also haven't been able to pay because I was in college at the time. I keep receiving phone calls from Nationwide Credit (my cell phone, work phone), but have been ignoring them. I received a letter today asking for payment. I can pay about $20-$25k right now. Should I call AmEx first? Or should I call Nationwide Credit? Or should I just mail a $20k payment? Thank you.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2011
      Bill
      Mailing the collection agent Nationwide Credit will reset the statute of limitations on the debt, so think twice before sending it a check for $20.

      If you have $20,000 or $25,000, ask the collection agent if this is a settlement for the $40,000 debt. If so, a $20,000 final settlement for a $40,000 debt is a fair deal for you and the collection agent. Consult with a lawyer who has experience in contracts before signing a settlement agreement.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2011
    Kevin
    American Express has gone to the dogs. If you have this card, destroy it and cancel your account with them. In 2009 I was to be married. I began putting large purchases on it having a credit card limit of 10,000 at that time. After having made a few of these purchases, I noticed my credit card limit went down to 7,500. I called AmEx and was told my credit rating wasn't good. I then sent for the three credit reports from the leading agencies. All came back with excellent ratings. AmEx simply was afraid, I imagine, because of the down turn in the economy that people were using their cards to live. At this point, I paid off the card and said I would not use it again. My bad. I used it to the tune of about $2,000 over a small period of time and intended to pay it off with my first IRA withdrawal in six months. Till then, I was making regular, on time payments of a little more than the minimum amount. Recently when my wife's computer went out, attempted to purchase one for $535 total. My card was refused. I thought it a mistake and asked the salesperson to please run it again. Still, it was declined. Today, I sent an email to AmEx and received one back. Apparently, without my knowledge, my credit limit had been dropped to $2,300. This time, I will pay off my account with AmEx and tear up the card and close the account. My suggestion to anyone using an AmEx card is to get rid of it. Furthermore, the email that I received in reply to mine contained grammar and vocabulary that clearly indicated the person had no ability to even use the English language as intended. Once the card considered prestigious to have is simply a shady organization barely a step up from the local loan shark. BEWARE!!!
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2011
      Bill
      I understand why you are upset at what seems to be an arbitrary, unmerited, and seemingly unannounced reduction of your AmEx credit limit. A small tip I can offer for the future is to pay close attention to the monthly statements creditors send, as they list the credit limit, the balance owing, and remaining amount of available credit. You may still have been peeved to see your credit limit lowered so drastically, when you reviewed your statement, at least you would not have been surprised and embarrassed when the clerk informed you that your card was declined.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2011
    fromthere
    I am non US citizen and i have amex i am living country in 3 months and i owe 11k . i do not want to pay cause i am not coming back, what should i tell them when they will call me regarding payment?what they can do to me if i want pay?thank you very much!
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2011
      Bill
      I suppose you can tell them anything that you want, if you have made the decision that your not wanting to pay your bills is reason enough to not pay them. American Express can pursue collections against you, if you break your agreement with you. They can sue you. If they get a judgment against you, they can file a lien against you that will appear on your credit report. They can attempt to pursue you, even when you are in another country. Depending on the laws in your home country, AmEx may be able to come after your wages or assets.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2011
      from there
      Thank you for your respond!I mean what should I tell them so they would close my account,like should i say that i am bankrupt? what will be the best choice for me,and what if in few years will decide to come back how long does it takes to have a good cc score again?i do not want them to sued me.i should not have this cc at first place b/c i am not US citizen,maybe for future they should check the status before giving a cc to everybody.Thank you for your time very very much!
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2011
      Bill
      If you are leaving the country in a few months, you could choose to avoid speaking with the creditor before you depart. If you come back in a few years, the debt will be waiting for you, hiavng grown with interest and penalty. The creditor can definitely sue you, if you default on the agreement. If the creditor sues you and gets a judgment against you, you could find yoursel facing a wage levy at your new place of employment.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2011
      sally
      My husband lost his job and was out of work for a year. our income has been reduced by 75%. amex took us to court for being unable to pay amex bill which is approx. $22,000 my husband went to court represented himself judge filed judgement against us but urged lawyer representing amex to work with us. A week later lawyer from amex sent us a copy of judgement and also attached copies of other peoples judgements filed on behalf of amex with all their account info, full name, and address. I called lawyer to express my concern over the legality of their doing this and they never called me back nor have we heard anything back from amex to see if they will work with us. Any advise
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2011
      Bill
      Consult with an attorney in your state who has experience in either debt or consumer law. I offer this observation because it is possible the attorney sent you confidential information that is in violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). On the other hand, he or she may have sent you copies of public information, which would not be a violation of any law. If you were sent private information, you would not have a cause of action, but the people listed may. If that is the case, the lawyer sending you the information has mess on his or her hands. You may be able to exchange your promise of confidentiality for a greatly reduced settlement. However, what I have written here is purely speculation, and that is why you should consult with an attorney who can review the documents sent you.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Aug, 2011
      Dana
      Hello. Recently American Express sent a summons to me for a civil suit for the amount of 2592.82. I was wondering if I should call American Express or the lawyer they have representing them to try and setup a payment plan. I barely make enough to get by on and the only thing to my name is my car. Years ago I had an auto withdraw of 100 every month with the collections I think. But after a while I started to get a credit card bill for American Express again with a minimum payment and my total I still can use etc. After a while I checked and they actually stopped taking 100 every month and I have no idea why. And as I was saying they are now trying to sue me.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Aug, 2011
      Bill
      Yes, contact the lawyer to see if you can work out a payment plan before you are due in court.

      It is not clear to me exactly what you mean about a "total I still can use etc.' Were you able to still use the card? Or are you saying that the balance was being reflected accurately on the statements you were receiving?
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Aug, 2011
      Dana
      American express started to send me a statement again even though the card was not supposed to be active. And the statement was reflective of the amount I already paid the collections agency.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Aug, 2011
      Bill
      You need to call American Express and then send them proof that the payment was made and that it was made towards the account in question.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2010
    Bill
    Please see the Bills.com resource Summons for American Express Debt for my answer to a similar question from a reader. The facts in that question are slightly different, but the basic issue and analysis is the same.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2010
    Sandie
    I have been an AMEX cardholder for over 6 years and paid bill on time until recently. I was on a payment plan with them to payoff over $34k until recently.New bal is $30k and 3 mos behind.Recd letter stating my acct is now with Zwicker & Assoc for collections.I have read nothing but bad reviews for this collection agency and even AMEX sued them in recent years.Who do I renegotiate my acct with - AMEX directly or with Zwicker and Assoc.Zwicker has called but not left any messages-I dont get home till late in evening to retrieve my calls.I would like to start back up on the payment plan of where I left off if I could.What do you suggest I do? I cannot pay any more than what I was paying on the repayment plan-if I could pay a little less that would be great-have a daughter who will graduate from high school this year and all the fees for SAT and ACT tests and application fees are taking its toll on our budget.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2010
    Bill
    It is possible that the account can be sent to a lawyers office to pursue legal action against you. I encourage you to read Collections Advice. This article provides you with a detailed overview of what happens when an account goes to collections.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2010
    pooh
    my question is i owe 6,500 on my AMEX card..i havent made a payment in 2 years due to hardship..yea different collection agencies called but i still didnt have the money..i recieved some calls from a law firm but i didnt answer but they did leave a message stating that they had an excellent repayment program..after a few days they left a final message and said they are tired of calling and good luck with my situation..what is next to come?? am i about to be sued??..i only recieve 140 a week from unemployment, a nursing student and i have a job that i only can work one weekend out of the month..what will happen..please help..im scared!!
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2010
    Bill
    I understand that you do not want a judgment against you, but from what you wrote, that ship has already sailed. Now that there is a judgment against you, you have to figure out what is the best step to take from here. I recommend that you read what can I do about a judgment? There, you will find information about negotiating with the creditor and also what actions the creditor can take against you post-judgment, such as garnishing wages, levying a bank account, and filing a lien against you.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2010
    Carol
    Due to hardship i fell behind on my American Express bill The amount owed was $2800 The firm of Wagner and Hunt took me to court and i started sending in payments for 6 months of $35 They went back to court and won a judgement on me I call them and ask what exactly do they want me to pay every month and it just goes around in circles They have never sent me anything in writing after court to let me know what the payments should be I don't want a judgement against me Why are they being so aggressive over a small amount of money owed
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2010
    Bill
    American Express is not known to be lackadaisical when it comes to collecting delinquent debt, so it is unusual for you hear nothing from it or its collection agent. My guess -- note that word choice -- is that American Express somehow misfiled or lost critical documents relating to your account that makes collections difficult or impossible. Should you hear from American Express or its collection agent in the future, be certain to validate the debt immediately to test whether your account is documented fully.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2010
    Jay
    Hi, I know this is going to sound strange... I stopped paying my personal AMEX around a year and half ago. Balance was 50K. Since then I have not recieved any phonecalls or letters from Amex or any other collection agenices! Is it posible I got lost in the shuffle?!?!
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2010
    Bill
    You are dealing with a law firm in the business of collecting debt. Some law firms are staffed by courteous employees who would rather use a carrot than a stick when speaking with debtors. Others are not so inclined. Continue to negotiate with the law firm like you would any other. Explain that you want to pay, and are interested in working out a reasonable plan. Be persistent. Read the Bills.com resource Debt Negotiation and Settlement Advice for more tips and techniques.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2010
    JR
    Hi, I am looking for some advice. I am $30k in debt with AMEX and 120 days delinquent. I am intersted in settling, but today received a call from a law firm on their behalf that was a bit rude and threatened a lawsuit. He didn't offer any settlement options, only 0% financing with a minimum monthly payment. I can't make these payments now and don't know what to do. Do you have any advice for me?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2010
    Bill
    you should DEFINITELY contact the rep and mandate that they fax to you a letter stipulating the terms of the debt settlement with American Express. Amex could just take the $5,500 as a one time payment (not settlement) and still come after you for the remaining $29,000. The fact that they have not taken funds yet, however, does not guarantee that they have messed it up. Large banks and collection agencies are notorious for being slow on processing transactions... but either way, get it in writing just in case something goes awry.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2010
    Brynn
    I stopped paying my Amex in March. My balance owed is $34,000. After pleading to the collection agency (Nationwide), we finally agreed to settle the debt if i paid $5,500 in full, that day! I got the offer in writing and had it faxed to me. I gave the rep my bank routing number(i know you say not to do this, but it's an account with only the $5,500 in it and I don't plan on using the account again). Anyway, I'm still waiting for Amex to deduct the payment, it's been 2 days, what's the hold up? Should I contact the rep?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2010
    Bill
    The issue is not your payments, but whether you are in violation of your contract with American Express. If you have a traditional American Express charge card account whereby you agreed to repay 100% of the balance each month, then the fact that you are paying American Express something shows positive intent but is still in violation of your contract. If you have a credit card account with American Express, then you are not in violation of your contract if you are making the minimum payments. See the Bills.com resource Collections Advice to learn more about your rights and potential liabilities.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2010
    nick
    we owe American express 22,000.00 we have been paying them between 500-800 per week since 1-10 original bill was 35,000 they still turned us over to a collection agency but still i send them 1-2 checks per week and they cash them what can they do thank you
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2010
    Bill
    A $14,000 settlement on a $35,000 American Express debt is a good deal if it is in writing and it is the final settlement on the debt. If you can get the Amex debt down to $7,000 then that is an exceptional deal. As for your second question, the devil is in the details -- be sure the settlement is a final one and not one where additional debt is owed. Make sure that you have it in writing before sending funds. Regarding question three, is the business a corporation? If so, the credit report damage and forgiveness are on the corporation and not a natural person, but frequently you can have a personal guarantee on it, so check your own personal credit report and see if the account is listed. If the business is a sole proprietorship or partnership, then the proprietor or partners may be liable. Regarding question five, the forgiven debt is taxable to the owner of the account - review our answer Cancellation of Debt Income (CODI).
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2010
    Fitz
    My company had about 120,000 of amex debt between 4 cards - we set up a payment plan to pay of gold card we had one payment to go and could not come up wtih the money to make the payment - the account was set out to UDC and we now have set up 6 month plan to pay it off - the other three cards we were never late on until last month - we now have been informed they were sent to CA - one called us Friday offering a 720 month payment on 35 k for 12 months if we paid $1500 by the end of March or they would take $24k settlement - today they called back and said they would take 14k settlement - my questions are - do we offer a counter settle at 7k ? what if the other 2 cards go to different agencies ? these are in corp name - if settled does it affect personal credit and can they come after guarantoors for balance ? is any of the debt forgiven taxable - and to who ? thanks for your help!
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2010
    Bill
    Ask your spouse to remove you as an authorized user on the account. Regardless, the bankruptcy should not have any effect on your credit report.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2010
    Jerry
    My husband recently filed for bankruptcy and he made me an authorized user on his two Amex credit cards. He had the accounts for twenty years and had a bad few years. I did call them and they said he is solely responsible for the accounts but, it still appears on my report. Nothing negative yet the report reflects all payments were made on time but, I am fearful. His bankruptcy has not been discharged as of yet, but I am concerned once it is discharged I will be negatively impacted for his issues. Can I request Amex to remove the accounts from my credit report, now and if not how long will I be negatively impacted?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2010
    Bill
    Cannot hurt to try to escalate. American Express does not have a reputation for being particularly flexible regarding collections, but again, it never hurts to ask. Regarding the delinquency, a credit report is an imperfect snapshot of your credit history that is 60-90 days old. It surprises me that American Express has not reported the delinquency. I understand your wanting to repay the entire debt as a point of pride. However, if American Express is not going to allow you the time to repay the debt, is selling the debt, and is probably going to report your delinquency, you might as well play along. Stop paying American Express. Put the money you were going to pay the company aside, and when your account is sold to a collection agent give them a lump-sum settlement offer of 40 cents on the dollar. Ask for a pay for delete.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2010
    Dave
    Yes, May 17 is the 6 month mark since first delinquency (November), and yes, the card was canceled a few months ago. I am still able to (and am) make payments online at their web site. This delinquency is not yet showing up on my personal credit report, however. Since it is a corporate account, they won't agree to any hardship payment plan of any kind (which they do on personal AMEX accounts). If it goes to collection, my understanding is that it is a bigger negative impact on my credit than if AMEX were to report it, but maybe I have that wrong. I also don't want the harassing calls from a collector (which I've never had in my life). They won't have any idea that I've paid the large sums up to the point they account has been turned over to them since they are only interested in maximizing their recovery from buying my debt. I realize they may even settle on a lesser amount, but I would like to pay the full amount that I take full responsibility for. Is there anyone at AMEX I should escalate this to once it gets closer to that turnover date so they can see I've made substantial payments to get the account down and perhaps give me a few more months to work with them directly?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2010
    Bill
    Contact the customer service representative at American Express again and ask them what is magical about May 17. Is the date arbitrary? Is it tied to your date of first delinquency? My guess is that the date is 180 days from the date of first delinquency, which fits with your timeline. On a related note, has the account been closed or the card canceled? If your answer is "yes," to either then there is nothing horrible about the account being assigned to a third-party collection agent. In fact, you might even be able to pay the account off faster by making a settlement agreement with the collection agent.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2010
    Dave
    I had an AMEX Corporate card from my former employer. The card was in my name, and on my credit report and the company is/was not responsible for paying it. I left that job in late 2009 and, due to some major financial hardships at the end of 09, I had to use that card for personal expenses. The balance, with fees and penalties, reached almost $40,000 before I could start paying it this month (now 5 months past due). I paid them $10,000 this month, and have told them I can pay at least $5000 for the next 5-6 months until it's paid in full. Fortunately, I have become employed again with a very good income to allow me to do this. But, in mid May the account will be at the point that they said it will have to go to a 3rd party agency unless I can pay $23K by 5/17. I can pay $10,000 by then (and the rest in the following months), but not any more. They were insistent (but very polite at least), that there is "nothing they could do after 5/17" to prevent it going to a 3rd party, even if I can show the good faith effort of getting it paid back quickly. Is this true? Will they possibly extend my time to pay them before shipping it off to a debt collector?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2010
    Bill
    Only one way to find out -- ask your question and if you get an accurate answer Bills.com is a great site.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2010
    Hurley
    is this still a good site? I had an AMEX question
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    Bill
    I would be surprised if American Express closed the primary cardholder's account if an authorized user filed bankruptcy. If you want to be super-cautious, ask the primary to remove your name from the account before you file.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    Bill
    Review your credit report again to see what entity owns your collection accounts. Remember that a credit report is an imperfect snapshot of your credit history from 30-90 days ago. It may take time for the accurate owner of your collection accounts to appear on your credit report. Obviously, I cannot answer your questions without looking at your credit report. The original creditor has the right to "assign" (i.e., sell) a collection account to a third party. Subsequent third-parties can assign a collection accounts. Read Charge-Off & Credit Report to understand the relationship between those two issues. Read What Are My Debt Consolidation Options? to understand what you can do to resolve the debt. Finally, read Collections Advice to understand what may happen if you do not resolve the debt.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    Henry
    I stopped paying on my Citibank and American Express Card about 7 months ago due to unemployment and not being able to make monthly payments. I have received collection calls from Citibank (Client Services) and Amex (Nationwide). Do these collection agencies own the accounts now? Did the original creditors sell the accounts? Both accounts show as charge off on my credit report. Does the collection agency have the ability to settle the debt and clear the original late payments and charge off from my credit even though it was reported by Amex and Citi?
    1 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    Wendy
    I am an AU on an Amex card and I will be filing BK soon. Will Amex close the account of the primary cardholder because of my decision to file BK even though they are not. Or should I just remove myself as an AU before filing.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    Bill
    You appear to be taking the steps necessary to convince American Express that your account was used in an unauthorized manner, which resulted in charges not made by you. Do not pay the disputed charges -- you have no obligation to do so. To learn more, see the Federal Trade Commission's identity theft Web site.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    Arthur
    My American Express card was compromised back in 2008! I have made every efford, including contacting Amex, filing police reports, notifying credit agencies of the situation. I also delt with Sheila Baldwin who is Amex corporate rep trying to resolve unauthorized charges that were continuasly billed to a closed account. Now I'm receiving letters from collection agency with a balance of $13,597.41 and it is signed by Liwen Liang. I have been a member since 1989, and never missed a payment! Any suggestions would be appreciated
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2010
    Bill
    The debt did not disappear, unless American Express lost the documentation to your debt. If that happened, then if you do a debt validation and American Express's collection agent cannot validate the debt THEN it disappears. However, assuming the debt can be validated, at some point you will need to resolve the debt one way or another. First, read Charge-Off & Credit Report to understand the relationship between those two issues. Second, read What Are My Debt Consolidation Options? to understand what you can do to resolve the debt. Finally, read Collections Advice to understand what may happen if you do not resolve the debt.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2010
    Lee
    Hello Bill, My account with AmEX has been consider a charge off for the last 4 years. The amount was less than 1k. This happen back when i was in college. I would like to pay if off. I working on improving my credit score for a car loan. However, a few people i spoke to, told me it may hurt me more on my credit score at this point to pay it off than to leave till its drop from my credit. Any suggestions on what to do with this charge off account? Thank you bill
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2009
    Bill
    American Express is reserving the right to collect the balance of what you owe the company should you decide to do business with the company again. It is not forgiving the balance, but (I am guessing) waiving its right to collect it until you apply to become a customer. It is a clever strategy for American Express. Regarding your second question, the key issue here is how your brother was listed on your account. If your brother was an "authorized user" he had the right to use the card but no obligation to pay the balance. If your brother was an authorized user then American Express has no legal right to demand that he pay any balance due on your account. However, if your brother was "joint account holder," then American Express can pursue your brother for any balance remaining on your account. Settling the account will likely result in an account status of “settled as agreed” or “settled for less than full balance” appearing on your credit report. These statuses are not generally as good as a “paid in full” status, but the difference is negligible, especially on an account that is already delinquent. The key thing that will help your credit report is resolving the delinquent debt so it will report a $0 balance on your credit report; how the account was resolved is not nearly as important, especially if the settlement will save you a significant amount of money.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2009
    Yassir
    Hi, i am the same person from comment # 45 / 47, the one without an SSN, apparently i didn't do anything about that AMEX $8500 balance and the NCO, Mitchel & Kay, Wagner and hunt etc. just stopped contacting but now received a settlement offer directly from AMEX for 60% off on the $8,500 balance payable in 24 months payments @ $140/month. Obviously, i prefer to pay an amount between $1500 to $2000 in 1 or 2 installments instead of paying around $3000 in 2 years, they just provided a telephone no. to accept the offer but i wanted to make the counter offer for a lumsum payment of $2000, their offer letter indicates that balance will be waived but on back of the letter, there is a statement that if i will need an AMEX card again, i will need to pay the waived balance again, so is it possible that a settled waived off balance could re appear back ? Ofcourse my company was a simple C-Corporate with non US owner but my brother (non US citizen) openned anther company in New york with me as one of directors, he was an additional card holder on the previous AMEX i am planning to settle for, if he applies fr a New AMEX through that New company with different address and details, will Amex turn down his application being an additional card holder on my card ? And how will the settled offer effect the old company ratiing and how much negative impact it would effect ?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Nov, 2009
    Bill
    Contact the customer service call center, and ask the person who answers your call to elevate your call to a supervisor. Explain your situation, and that you can make a payment now. If American Express does not want to retain a customer who has been loyal for 15 years, then it is time for you to take your business to another company.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Nov, 2009
    Tara
    AMEX was the life-line of our business and five months ago (and the first time in 15 years) we were unable to pay our business account. The account varied from 15,000-60,000 and it was paid in full each month. AMEX offered the repayment program with payments by the 15th of each month. Originally we had an Autopay set up through there system. By the 2nd payment we realized 6 days later, AMEX never did withdraw the payment. I called and was told it canceled due to us being late *WHAT* r-e-a-l-l-y wasn’t it there error????? Needless to say each month now AMEX calls all our phones seeking payment. This is absurd, I remind them payment isn’t past due until after the 15th. Of course they apologize and mention our “outstanding card members” status. So with that . . . today I was * *AMAZMED, SHOCKED and DISCUSTED* *. THEY canceled our account. Apparently they have the right as per our “first agreement” not the “repayment agreement.” Not only did they close the account but they deleted all our Reward-Points. I AM SO CONFUSED!!!! DO they have this right???? Besides I was making more then the agreed payments. grrrrr
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2009
    Bill
    American Express may not accept such an offer of compromise to settle your debt, but assuming that American Express sells your debt to a collection agent at a discount, and the collection agent is motivated to accept a lump-sum settlement at discount, then you will have resolved the debt for less than its face value. I suggest you do three things. First, read the comments from fellow readers above about their experiences with American Express and the collection agents that buy American Express's debt. Second, read Debt Negotiation and Settlement Advice. Finally, to understand how this may effect your credit score, read FICO Score Calculation.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2009
    Ed
    I owe amax about 32,000.00 I am trying to borrow some money from my parents. I have only 1 late payment of a week. I have been with amex since 2000. I was wondering if they would except a payoff lump sum of anything from half to seventy five percent? as payment in full and would that hurt my credit?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2009
    Bill
    It is quite common that settlememnt errors occur, or accounts get mis-reported. What you can do is to send to Aegis a Cease Communication letter and combine that with a Debt Validation letter, including the detail and agreement (and the voided checks that confirm receipt of payment) on your settlement. On this page there are sample forms for both (for free!) Free Debt Validation and Cease Desist Letters They will have to validate that you still legally owe the debt or stop bothering you. Let us know how it goes. Bill
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2009
    Debbie
    My husband and I had an American Express account that we owed $10,000 on. He became seriously ill and is permanently disabled and I had to quit work to care for him. The loss of income made it necessary for us to stop paying some bills, including American Express. It was sent to the Law offices of Mann Bracken this year and I worked out a settlement with them of $5,000 in April and $338.83 in May and June. I have an agreement that says I will be released from further obligation of this debt. In July, I got a call from Aegis Receivables Management trying to collect on the remaining amount. I sent them 3 times, by fax, regular mail and Certified mail receipt requested a copy of that agreement. They just won't stop trying to collect on the remainder. What can I do to make them stop? I have gotten so that when the collector calls, I just hang up. They won't listen anyway. Can they legally try to collect on the remainder after I had settled this account? The letter I got today is supposed to be from a vice president of American Express named Liwen Liang. But it mentions Aegis Receivables. Who am I dealing with here? Thank you for any help you can give me.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2009
    Bill
    Get the offer in writing! Let us step back for a moment and look at the sequence of events here. American Express tried to collect the $39,000 you owe it and failed, so Amex sold the debt to a collection agent. The collection agent used rude statements in an attempt to bully you to pay the bill. You did not budge, and the first collection agent sold your account to a second collection agent, apparently at a steep discount. The second collection agent chose a more intelligent approach. Instead of being nasty and using fear and anger to make you pay, they offered you an attractive deal that appealed to your intelligence. Get the offer in writing. Read it carefully. If you are confused by or suspicious of the language used in the agreement, take the agreement to an attorney experienced in contract law. A settlement for 15 cents on the dollar is a great deal for you. The fact that the call center is outside of the US is meaningless if the offer is legitimate.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2009
    Linda
    I owe AMEX $39,000. Could not work out a payment plan with AMEX as I lost my job and am on unemployment. My account was sold to CG Services. I tried negotiating with them but was called a liar and a cheat and told I had hidden money. Finally I had their number blocked on my phone. After several months I got a call from Nationwide Credit telling me they are now in charge of my account. They are willing to settle for .15/on the dollar but the woman I'm speaking with is in India. I want a guarantee from AMEX that the debt is paid in full when I give Nationwide Credit $5850. But I am leary -- How do I know that Nationwide or AMEX will consider this outstanding debt to be paid in full? And is this legit given the call originates from India? Thank you.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2009
    Bill
    You do not have a defense, but you do have an unsecured claim against your former employer. If your former employer is in bankruptcy, you must contact the trustee and file a claim for the amount owed you. Otherwise, if you signed the agreement with American Express, then you are liable for the debt regardless of any agreement you signed with your former employer. I know that is not fair -- you had a good-faith belief in your employer's promise to reimburse you for your business-related expenses -- but that does not trump the promise you made to American Express to pay the charges you made on your account.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2009
    Karen
    I held a corporate AMEX card that was used exclusively for my company's direct expenses, not my business expenses. Our SVP of Finance signed a corporate card agreement that essentially stated that all approved expenses would be paid for by the company. The company ceased business operations and now AMEX is telling me that I'm responsible for $50,000 in unpaid bills. The contradiction is in the Corporate Card Member agreement which places the liability on the individual and not the company. Signing on the back of the plastic card essentially binds me to a different agreement than the corporate agreement. How can there be two different agreements and the company gets off free and clear. Do I have any defense?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2009
    Bill
    Contact Mitchell and Kay actively and get the debt resolved. You mentioned you run a business. If a potential business partner ran a credit check on your business and the American Express delinquency popped up, what would that potential business partner conclude about your business? If you can afford to resolve the debt do so. I don't know how well the various American Express regions cooperate with each other in sharing customer information. You have to assume they do so well, given the size and longevity of the company.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2009
    Yassir
    No actually it was quite clear that i was a non US citizen, she asked me again and again while reviewing the applciation and even after i got the cards, i use to get regular calls from them asking about business and details since i was not a US citizen and was without SSN. so thats not an issue ... regarding making an offer to Mitchell and Kay, whats the worst if i do not contact them and keep waiting for their better settlement offer ? Also will this be recorded in any businss or personal credit report ? Also my home country is not UAE, just openned another branch of the company there and visa status there is "Investor" but got a good local Amex platinum card offer ... if i go and fill out the application .. will they still be able to locate any dues on the AMEX UAE account ? if yes then will paying via settleent offer help reply with them either in US or UAE ?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2009
    Bill
    My guess (note that word choice) is that American Express did not notice it had incomplete documentation on your account until you were late on a payment. When you could not provide a US Social Security number it set off all kinds of warnings, which triggered the closure of your account. Go ahead and make the law office an offer. You have nothing to lose by doing so. I do not know how integrated American Express' operations are, and if your applying for an American Express account in your home country will be linked to your delinquent account in the US.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2009
    Yassir
    Well my case is very strange, I am a non US Citizen & non-US Resident but have a company in US for around 5 years, i applied without an SSN, using company Tax ID and got an Amex Platinum Card 2 years back (most probably based on my company's credit history which was almost clean as no credit was ever taken from anyone in any sense) ... though upon checking the application status via phone, i was asked for my US tax ID and on providing that, the application was approved and cards issued, i had the supplementary cards ordered for my brothers too (also non US citizens) ... now the card didn't had a fixed limit yet they never declined for any amounts and i kept paying bills around $10K to $15K in full each month, then i was once late on payment for a day (around $14K) and saw a message at my Amex account saying charging privileges cancelled and same day i called AMEX to ask about that, they said its due to payment delay as it was a charge card, i made the payment in full on the phone and he said let me activate your account but said he can't do it and requested a lot of company documentation .. luckily all dox were handy so i faxed him over the requested details and then upon receipt i asked if the account is active again and he said he was unable to activate account and all accounts were cancelled including the Jetblue or starwood cards etc ... and I was asked to re-apply .... i felt really bad the way i was misguided and mis-treated just to get payment ... i immediately logged into my business checking account and cancelled the payments to Amex and started making payments @ $500 ~ $1000 each month on non priority ... this all happened around 8 months ago, but i stopped making the payments about 3 ~ 4 months back and balance is around $8.5K now ... though i don't have an SSN nor live in US, just visit company every couple of months to look after staff and deals but i think i achieved what i wanted to and now want to clear the balance as i have to, feel not right keeping it ... collection companies might be calling the local no. but i don't attend it since overseas ... but the real question is i received an offer from AMEX / Law office of Mitchel and Kay to pay around $6K for $8.5K debt ... the date has already passed by the time mail was forwarded to me but is it possible to settle for a better offer or send them some proposal say for like 30% as 50%+ on that bill is for interest, finance charges, fees and late payment etc ... ? Also how this will be reported the credit reporting agencies and where will it be reported as i don't have a credit report still they would have created one for me and would it be effecting business score or my score ? Fianlly if i apply for an AMEX from UAE, will they still find the $8.5K amount payable to Amex US since all particulars company and details will be same even for the UAE application ...
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2009
    Bill
    Yes, Nationwide now owns your debt. See Collections Agencies, Collections Laws and Your State's Statute of Limitations for more background information on this issue. Regarding your credit report, when you resolve the debt with Nationwide, it is Nationwide's responsibility to update the credit reporting agencies on the status of the debt. Finally, you may want to consider Credit Card Debt Settlement options, including a no-cost debt consolidation quote from pre-screened providers.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2009
    Sam
    I owe Amex about 45K. When I realized I was in trouble last summer and wouldn't be able to make monthly payments I contacted a credit counselor. Amex didn't accept the credit counselor plan, the counselor said to resubmit and just wait sometimes it takes a while. Now we were 45 days late and Amex turned the account over to URS and they started calling me. I asked them to verify the debt and then they turned it over to Nationwide. I've been paying Nationwide 1500 a month. I would like to negotiate this with Amex and not Nationwide but Amex won't talk to me and refers me back to Nationwide. My credit report shows the account as a charge off. Did Amex sell my debt to Nationwide? Can only Amex remove the charge off from my credit report, if so which office in Amex should I try and talk to because so far all Amex folks refer me back to Nationwide.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2009
    Tina
    I just spoke to AMEX and they agreed to remove negative remarks on my credit which was reported as a late business card. But they said they would remove the negative remarks by eliminating the card from the credit bureau entirly. can they do that and if so does that make it worse or better. They agreed to write a letter but what should I have them write?? Help
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2009
    Bill
    Sure, a creditor can request that its listing be entirely removed from your credit reports; this is common for accounts that are listed in the wrong person's credit history. I understand your concern about having an account with a solid history removed entirely from your credit report, but I would bet that the newer negative items are causing more damage to your score right now than any of the older information is helping. Having these derogatory remarks, along with all of the other information about this account, purged from your credit history should help your overall credit rating. As for the letter, you should probably have them document that they will request that all information about your account be removed from the records of any consumer credit reporting agency to which the account has been reported. I wish you the best of luck in clearing this up.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2009
    Bill
    My guess is that AmEx will not want to negotiate with you given that your account is current. They have no incentive at this point. You may want to speak to a debt negotiation firm about your particular options. Here's a link to get free quotes https://www.bills.com/debthelp/debt/ As I and other readers have written above, a delinquent account moves through various departments and then to outside collection agencies as it ages. Each has different rules, styles of negotiations, and levels of aggressive behavior depending on their target settlement goals. Jack, you are at the very top of the process, and the only thing the people at AmEx can do for you now is ask when you're making your next payment. Settling your account for anything less than the full balance is not an option on their computer screens.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2009
    Jack
    Bill, I have about 33K in cc debt on one Amex card. It is a combination of all our other debts and actually used to be much bigger. The interst rate is starting to go up here and there so I'm weighing options of trying to settle the account with them for a one time lump sum payment. Here is my question. My account is in good standing. We have had this card for about 5 years now and i think we have only had one late payment and it was over 3 years ago. Is Amex even going to consider settling with me because my account is not delinquent? This would be the end of all my debt minus our house and i just wanted to see if you think this would even be possible. Thanks for any advice.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2009
    Bill
    You will need to resolve the delinquency at some point, or else AMEX will eventually sell the account to a third party collection agency or a law firm, and will cause you more trouble in the future. If you step up your payments so that the account is up to date again, then the collection agency will stop following up with you.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2009
    lina
    I have 6000 outstanding to amex. I pay online each month - but fell behind 1 year and a half ago year and was sent to collect corp. I have continued to pay monthly fee as it shows up through the amex site and the amount owed is deducted. I refuse to answer any collect corp calls. Should I acknowledge collect corp - or just keep paying amex directly?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2009
    Bill
    A lot will depend on how old the debt is and who owns the account. You stated previously that Amex sent the account to NCO, if they sold the debt to NCO then you would have to try and negotiate with them. I cannot really comment on whether $10,000 will be acceptable or not, as every negotiation is unique in its circumstance. i have seen accounts settled for as less as 10% of what is owed, but that does not mean that it will happen in your case. In short, you will only know once you make the offer.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2009
    Edgar
    Thank you for your quick response.. On a follow-up note, realistically speaking, how much per month should I be able to save in order to settle this amount of debt in say 2 to 3 years? Realistically, do you think Amex will accept that amount ($10,000) as settlement if I could borrow that money from friends & relatives? And forgive the remaining?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2009
    Edgar
    I have about $37k debt to Amex and initially I was asking them if they would accept certain amount each month that I could afford, I offered them $300 which they declined. My income is no longer the same as before and my house is being subjected to a foreclosure. I still wanted to keep a good relationship with Amex and was asking them if I could pay them $300 a month until I pay off my debt. And I wanted it no interest because it will be a payment forever if they still continue to charge interest. I don't mind them closing my account and all I want is to be able to pay-off my debt with them. I stopped trying to settle with them because all I get each time were harrassers and non-sense collectors. They now sent my account to NCO Financial. What would be the best option if I still want to settle with Amex on a discount, say $0.50 to a dollar?. If I go for a debt-settlement how many years will it impact my credit score?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2009
    Bill
    Edgar, how soon you are able to finish a debt settlement program will depend a lot on how much you can save each month. I am afraid that even in a debt settlement program, your savings of $300 a month are not going to be enough. If there is any way if you could arrange for a lump sum amount (say $10000, and I am just picking a number here) you might get a settlement real quick. I think you need to get a better idea about all your options, I highly suggest that you get a free consultation from the folks at Freedom Debt Relief (www.freedomdebtrelief.com). The are one of the largest debt settlement firms and will give you a free consultation about your options after looking at your overall scenario. You can reach them toll free at 1-800-544-7211.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2009
    Former
    That is not possible, most credit card firms will only provide settlements for people already in trouble with their payments. This will definitely hurt your credit, but I am not sure how it will affect your GC process.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2009
    tendipatty
    I have around 2K(2000 USD) to pay to AMEX and i have to leave US immediately as my job is gone. I never defaulted and my credit score is excellent. Can I get a debt settlement without hitting my credit history? ( may be like 30-40 %)My GC processing is going on and would like to know whether it will affect it.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2009
    LaFleur
    As you bounced the check, they may be able to take you to court but realistically that happens only in a few cases. There is not enough information in your question for me to advice you about anything else.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2009
    Hilton
    i own amex an amount of money, and my account was passed to nation wide credit collectors. they call me at work last month and make me pay by charging to my bank account 100.00 dollars and another for 415.00 dollars, the check for 100.00 passed but the one for 415.00 did not (insufficient balance), they charged 53.00dollars to my mastercard and another check for 100.00 dollars this month, now they want the whole balance and they are threatening me with court. i own less than the amount they are claiming but say they can take me to court for the bad check, what can i do
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2009
    FR
    Bill, Nice of you to help everyone here out. I currently have about 70k out with Chase and 12k with Amex. Both of these are business accounts (don't show on credit report unless delinquent). Both of these accounts are about a year old and have always up to and including currently been paid min payment on time in full. At this time, things have changed and can't make the min. payment anymore. Chase has 0% for a few more months, Amex was 0% till a few months ago. I have excellent credit history which I would like to keep. Many people I know have been settling accounts for 20-50%. Is there a chance that Chase and Amex would be willing to accept a 50% payment in full on this account and have this not effect credit ratings at all??? I'd prefer not to risk missing payments and then negotiating as I would rather keep my credit as it is and have them mark the accounts as paid in full. Thanks
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2009
    Bill
    FR - There is no way to know unless you speak with them. As far as I know, they will not settle on an account unless it is delinquent, and even if they were to settle, they would report the status to the credit bureaus as "settled". Either way, it is going to impact your credit.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2009
    Sam
    There are various options available to help someone in your situation--I would recommend that you explore debt negotiation programs, credit counseling, and bankruptcy. All of these options can assist you in extending the amount of time you have to repay your debt; which option is best for you will largely depend on your finances and what you can afford to pay each month toward this debt. For example, if you are struggling with your other finances, bankruptcy may be a wise choice, in which case you should consult with an attorney. However, if you do have a fair amount of money (say $500 or more) you can pay each month, then you may want to consider a debt negotiation program. You can learn more about these options at www.bills.com/debt-help/. As for the FDCPA violations, you should probably consult with an attorney specializing in consumer rights law--you can find an attorney in your area by visiting www.naca.net. I wish you the best of luck!
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2009
    Katy
    I owe AMEX about $32,000 (accumulated trying to keep my business alive). Beginning about last October, I no longer had the finances to make full minimum payments, so I was sent to collections with Nationwide. We worked out a payment agreement (in writing) where I promised to pay $150 for the first 3 months, $200 for the next 3, and then we would renegotiate (assuming I would be more able to pay by that time.) Nationwide withdrew the first 2 payments but then sold the account to Mitchell N Kay (without notice, by the way.) So, not knowing Nationwide had sold the debt, I ignored the calls from the new CA. I finally received a letter from Mitchell N Kay saying I have 30 days to request a validation or pay up in full (my time is up on Friday). Since they have had my account, they have been violating FDCPA by leaving messages on mine, my parents, and my work voicemail saying they are a debt collector (even though they go through a long speech saying "this msg is for xxx, if you are not xxx then hang up, I will now wait 3 seconds for you to hang up", etc.) That, combined with loads of postings saying these guys are crooks, has not compelled to want to work with them. But, my debt is large and very recent, so I know this is just the beginning of harrassing phone calls. My credit is already bad due to foreclosure so I'm not worried about it getting much lower. I am not, however, interested in being sued. I do not mind paying off the debt in full, but I do need time and my finances are still limited. What is my best course of action?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2009
    Bill
    Susan - It is good that you did not send the payment to Mitchell N Kay collection agency. They would have probably taken that payment but still held you responsible for the balance, it is a common practice with these debt collectors and I see it happen all the time. You should never accept a settlement without having it on paper. There is also the confusion of who is handling the account. Wait to hear back from the person at Amex and if they do agree to accept the $12000, make sure they send you the offer letter. The letter should also confirm that once paid they will report the debt as paid in full with a zero balance. Also ask Amex as to who is in charge of the account, many a times credit card companies will have collection agencies follow up with the customer on the hopes that it will unsettle the customer into making the payments fast, which is exactly what they did to you. Be really careful with your money this time around. I would also suggest that you check how this account is showing up on your credit report, you can get a free copy of your report at www.annualcreditreport.com. If there are multiple listings of the same account, then you will need to make sure that each one of these listings will reflect that payment. Once again, the most important thing you need to do is to get any settlement offer in writing. Then only make the payment.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2009
    Susan
    Here is my question. I owe a lot of money to Amex. About $28,000. Many of the fees are over limits and late fees. I've been making small payments, not to their satisfaction. They sold my account to one collection agency (NCO) where it was sold again to Mitchell N. Kay. All the while Amex still accepts my payments...I make them over the phone. Mithcell N. Kay offered us a deal where if we came up with 12,057 by today they would forgive the remaining debt. I miraculously came up with the money by borrowing it. My problem now is our money has a temporary hold from our bank, due to be released next week. We told the guy at Mitchell N. Kay and he flipped out on us. Called us liars and said "we agreed" to the payement date. We told him we would fax over a copy of our deposit slip so he could see for himself that the money is there and once it clears we will overnight a cashiers check to him. He said no go, now they want the amount in full. I am at my wits end. I called Amex Executive Offices this morning and spoke with a very nice man, I briefly told him about my situation and offered to pay them directly the $12,000 I have. He said he would forward my request onto the correct deparment and they would "get back with me." Does anyone have any advice on how to handle this now and what i can do. I hate those guys in collection. They are rude and try and bully us. We want to clear this debt but I don't have the amount in full. We had to borrow the money from my husband's company which hurt the company financially but they were still willing to do it. I'm sick over this. Can anyone help me please?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2009
    Bill
    Sergio, you have some options. First you can call them and ask to speak to a manager and explain that you would like to be placed on their "hardship program" and that you would like to pay $600 per month. I would think that they would gladly accept this, as that is a 5% monthly payment (when a typical monthly minimum payment is around or below 4%). If they agree to this, then be sure to get it in writing and start the payments and do not miss any until you are debt free. If they do not agree to this, you can try to contact a credit counselor to re-age your account and reduce your late fees and also get you on a payment that would be around $350 per month. Lastly, if you want to remain delinquent and just settle the debt for about half of what you owe and get a payment around $250 per month you can get a consultation from a debt settlement firm. Those are your options and I wish you the best.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2009
    sergio
    my question is: My mom is the primary account holder of the Amex account and we have a balance of 12,000. We are now 135 days past due but we have informed them thru that cycle of financial hardships that we were having and that we have all intentions of paying the card. We been outstanding customers since 05 with spending average of 3000 a month that for the first three and a half years was always paid in full. Amex called offeri g a payment plan for the immediate 6,500 that is due and offered a payment plan for 600 a month with no interest the first 6 months and then 9% the next 6 months. When I called today (I am an authorized user) the plan has changed and they want 750 a month. I said I had to see if we could do this which I do not think we can and then all of a sudden the person added that before the payment pls. A needed to pay 1,500 of a returned check. This was never said to us in 5+ conversations. We are willing to start Making some reasonable payments. But they agents are saying that this is what the computer says and that is all they are offering. What are my options? What can we do? We do want to pay and we can afford (barely at the moment) to pay 600 a month. We can even offer in six months to review and see if we can increase the amount depending on my job situation.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2009
    Bill
    I will need more information on how you procured this card to tell you how it would affect your credit. What you need to do is see how this account is reporting on your credit profile (if it is at all). Being that it is a business card, it really depends on the kind of company you owe. If it was a partnership business with each partner being responsible for the debts, then yes, this would affect your personal credit, but if it was an LLC, then it might not effect your personal credit at all. Still, whatever damage had to occur has happened already, I don't think that a settlement would take your credit down further. On the contrary, once you settle the debt and the creditors report it as paid off, you might actually see your credit improve.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2009
    Manny
    My brother and I shared a business AMEX which he ran up. He was making payments under a "Hardship Plan" but missed a payment so it has gone to a collections agency. I am trying to keep my good credit rating intact, so I am wondering if I negotiate to pay $14k on a $35k debt, will my credit be affected? Or should I let my brother continue on a payment plan?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2009
    Bill
    I am sorry but I do not know of a particular telephone number that I could give you.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2009
    Kathleen
    I have had the same issue as most of the above. However you say to "deal directly with AMEX". That is impossible. They won't connect me to their "Risk Mgmt" or "Care" depts. They say my only recourse is to WRITE A LETTER to consumer relations. How can I get a phone number to some one who can look at my account and tell me why certain things are happening? It is truly AMEX doing things but they keep pointing to a collection agency. I even have their statements on-line showing the issues.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2009
    Bill
    Each credit issuer deals with delinquent accounts and collections differently. Some are accomodating and friendly, some are aggressive and likley to sue you (Discover). I know that American Express has done many settlements on accounts, and if you want information on a settlement program I would recommend contacting Freedom Debt Relief (http://www.freedomdebtrelief.com/ ) at 1-800-544-7211 Good luck.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2009
    Jorge
    how does amex collection differ from say, bank america or wamu, etc. does their collector understand sometimes when you play hardball, the other side will call your bluff and they will get nothing. where as if you are accommodating, you may get a percentage of the total. lastly, do you know anyone who has settled with amex. and did they negotiate on all of their amex cards together.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2009
    Bill
    I would be extremely surprised if American Express were able to intercept payments made to your friend's business by consumers using their AmEx cards. Theoretically, if AmEx obtained a judgment against your friend's business, it may be able to apply for a court order allowing it to garnish payments due to your friends business from its cardmembers. However, I highly doubt that AmEx would attempt to do so, as I can imagine that such actions would cause a good deal of dissatisfaction amongst its customers, who expect to pay your friend's business, not to make a roundabout payment to American Express. Though I do not think that Amex will intercept payments, given the amount of money in question, I strongly encourage your friend to consult with a business attorney who is experienced in financial law for an expert opinion on whether or not he need worry about Amex intercepting payments made by Amex customers. How this Amex account will affect your credit rating will depend on whether or not the account is in your business name, if the business is a corporation, and if you or your friend offered a personal guarantee on the debt. Even if you did offer a personal guarantee, the accounts should not appear on your personal credit reports unless the creditor files suit and obtains a judgment against you, especially if the business is a corporation or LLC. If the account is not a business account which was opened in yours or your friend's name as cardholders, then the fact that you have defaulted on the account will likely be reported on your personal credit reports. Regardless of how the Amex account affects your credit rating, it should not affect your merchant credit processing account. The principal account holder's personal credit history is a factor considered by merchant account providers when deciding whether or not to offer a new merchant account. A merchant account is basically a line of credit, which is why providers want to know the account holder's credit score. However, once an account is established, the provider focuses on how you perform with your merchant account, not on changes in your credit score. Because of this fact, these problems you are currently facing with Amex should not affect your existing merchant account with Quickbooks. I wish you the best of luck in resolving this debt with Amex.
    1 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2009
    Sue
    My friend has a business which processes American Express customer payments through a merchant account. Due to the downturn, he now has an Am Ex balance on his business account of $165,000. Over time he will be able to pay this, and will contact Am Ex over the next day or two. Does Am Ex have the right to seize incoming customer payments which the customer paid on American Express? Will our merchant account (Quickbooks) be shut down when they notice this (potential activity) on our credit history? Will a negotiation of full payment show up on our credit history? Thanks so much?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2009
    Fernanda
    Hi. I have a $11,302 debt with AMEX, and I have no way to make the payments. I will have to go back to my country in a few months and I will not have a way to come back to USA. I would like to know what happens with an account that it is not paid at all, and for how long that will have an impact on my credit history. I have nothing else under my name, just this account. What should I do? Should I leave it, try to negotiate? Please, I would like an advise. Thanks.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2009
    Bill
    You could seek counsel from an attorney, but if you leave the country and do not have any assets in the USA, then it will be very hard for a creditor (AMEX) to come after you for collections. It will hurt your credit for up to 7 years.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2008
    Bill
    If you have no equity in your home, then by winning a judgment and placing a lien against your home probably will not get them anything. It is extremely unlikely that a credit card company would attempt to place a lien against a depreciating asset, like your auto (but seek legal advice from an attorney if you have other questions on the Amex debt). Good luck.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2008
    Barbara
    Can they get anything out my home if I'm sued but have 0 dollars of equity in my home? I also have 2 vehicles, one is a 1991 and the other a 1995. After being sued, how would they go about taking those vehicles and is this practice very common?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2008
    Bill
    The credit question depends on if she is a co-guarantor or if she is just an authorized user. If she co-guaranteed the AMEX debt, then yes it could impact her credit. I would recommend calling their client services department and making it clear that you intend to remain on the payoff plan and despite being late that you would like the AMEX account re-aged and to be back on the pay down schedule. I assure you that AMEX will work with you to get their principal repaid. Good luck.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2008
    Leah
    My husband had an AMEX card that included me and my 22 yr-old college daughter. We had some money issues and we made an arrangement with AMEX to pay $990/month on a $20,000 debt. We paid for 6 months & in Nov I was 3 days late. I received a notice dated 11/24 that we were in default because they had not received our pmt. On the same day I received a statement dated 11/23 that included our payment. Now CS Service are calling us. They are very threatening and call our cell phones and at work.They are threatening to call our daughter & tell her about this. Thru all of this I still don't know if they would take a settlement cause they just yell and threaten. What should I do and will it adversely effect my daughter's credit? Thanks!
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2008
    Bill
    if it is your personal card, then you will have to personally deal with that debt (since the company will not be a guarantor of that debt). You can look for debt relief options (check out FreedomDebtRelief.com ) or credit counseling. You should also file a claim against his company for the reimburement, and possibly ask an attorney to sue them for the unpaid portion. Sorry for this, and good luck.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2008
    camile
    Question: My husband's company went out of business, sticking him with an unpaid American Express bill (he'd been using his personal card) for unreimbursed business expenses. He traveled for business and the bill is huge, over $30,000. Needless to say, he got no severance and we have had no income for the past few months. What are our options? Can we negotiate with Amex to reduce the bill? Thanks so much.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2008
    Jay
    Question: I have $97,000 owed to Amex. They are willing to accept a 12 month payment program to fully pay off this debt. How will this affect my credit? Am I better or worse off if I try to settle the debt for less money?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2008
    Bill
    It is really what is most important to you. You could settle this debt for a discount (probably around half of what you owe) but it will hurt your credit rating. Alternatively, you could pay-off the debt in full which would not hurt your credit rating. So you should ask yourself if $50,000 is worth a negatively impacted credit score and how you feel about settlement. If you want a settlement consultation, check out www.freedomdebtrelief.com or www.debtok.com Good Luck Jay.
    1 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2008
    landerson
    I have been an American Express customer for over 20 years-never any issues-my business came to a halt about 8 months ago-just coming back now and I too am behind with AX..Have contacted them numerous times and have been making payments every month-just can't pay full balance-they refuse to work with me..one service rep told me "we only play hard ball here"..The thing is I will be in the position to pay them off in full and they are not interested-why in today's world would they not want to be paid in full????
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Dec, 2010
      Gordon
      Get time of call, name, rank and Serial Number. Write down what the individual said. And look up the Fair Credit and Collections Act. There you will find out that someone has broken the law!...And subject to a fine...Plus contact a law firm that handles these cases...get advice.... Happy Holidays, Gordie
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Dec, 2010
      Kelly
      I have friend in the same situation and he only owes American Express $7,000 and my friend said he could pay $500 a month and they will not work with them. The system is set up for people to fail. I see your post was from 2008 were you able to get this problem resolved with American Express??
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2008
    robhall
    American Express is primarily a prime (or good credit focussed) card issuer, so they don't deal as well with delinquency and their collection process is pretty aggressive. You could get an intermediary to negotiate on your behalf (check out Freedom Debt Relief) or wait and try again and maybe you will find a more reasonable collector. As your account 'ages' or moves thru the collection cycle, it will likely go into different call centers with different rules so there is a chance that your experience will be different next go around. Good luck.
    0 Votes