Watch out for American Express credit inquiries!

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SS49
 
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Watch out for American Express credit inquiries!

Postby SS49 » Thu Jul 14, 2011 3:09 am

Today I found out a VERY DISTURBING thing while on the phone with Amex customer service. As it turns out if you have an account you have granted American Express the right to do hard pulls whenever they want!

I could not believe this and asked to be transferred to the credit decisions department and the man explained how on the application I gave American Express the right to perform hard credit inquiries whenever they want so long as I have an account with them. It is expected to have a hard pull when you apply for a new account but how is it that Amex is getting away with this sneaky clause hidden in the cardholder agreement.

How many of you knew about this I bet 10 to 1 most of the cardholders don't know this and I was one of them. I found a story online of a man who received not one, but two inquiries from Amex during the same week for absolutely no reason. This is troubling and I am strongly considering closing my accounts with them. No other bank that I know of pulls this stunt.


Money card
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Postby Money card » Thu Jul 14, 2011 10:03 pm

If they are trying to solicit you don't sign up for any of there offers. if they are trying to get you to get another pne of their cards and you don't want one, don't get 1. However in the black and white pamphlet they sent you, they explained things to you.
last holiday season I bought some gift cards, 1 of them was a children's place gift card I used my American express card. a week ago in the Mail I got a 20% off coupon with my capitol1 gold card for children's place.

jeffysdad
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Postby jeffysdad » Fri Jul 15, 2011 5:23 pm

Are you sure you're not confusing a "hard pull" with the routine credit checks all the card issuers do? Anyone that extends you credit is entitled to pull your report to check up; these are not considered hard pulls and don't hurt you when applying for new credit.
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SS49
 
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Postby SS49 » Fri Jul 15, 2011 9:17 pm

No I am not confusing the hard pulls with the soft. Like you I could not believe the words I heard and asked multiple times to confirm what was being communicated to me. As an American Express cardholder you have agreed to give them the right to do both soft and hard credit inquiries whenever they wish. I am distraught over this and truly considering cancelling my cards despite my lengthy history. This practice is not fair to consumers and as stated I doubt many know about this.

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Pete838
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Postby Pete838 » Sat Jul 16, 2011 12:45 pm

Simple. Just dispute the inquiries. If you already have a relationship with AMEX (or any other creditor) then subsequent inquiries after you have an account established shouldn't "count" against your score. Nearly all creditors exercise their right to periodically check your score, and some will even charge you a penalty APR if you are in default with another creditor, but their looking at your credit doesn't count against you as a hard inquiry, at least it shouldn't. If you find that it does simply dispute it with the reporting bureau.
Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same.
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DoingHomework
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Postby DoingHomework » Mon Jul 18, 2011 5:10 pm

Pete838 wrote:Simple. Just dispute the inquiries. If you already have a relationship with AMEX (or any other creditor) then subsequent inquiries after you have an account established shouldn't "count" against your score. Nearly all creditors exercise their right to periodically check your score, and some will even charge you a penalty APR if you are in default with another creditor, but their looking at your credit doesn't count against you as a hard inquiry, at least it shouldn't. If you find that it does simply dispute it with the reporting bureau.


First off, almost any credit agreement gives the issuer the right to check up on you whether with a "hard" pull or a "soft" pull. If they abuse teh practice, even though you gave them permission, you have a cause of action against them. American Express is not going to pull your credit without good reason. They will do "soft" risk monitoring.

Second, the "universal default" Pete referred to is now illegal. A credit issuer cannot raise your rate just because you are in default with a different issuer.

Finally, a dispute is not the proper route to take. You authorized the issuer to review your credit. There is nothing to dispute. If you believe they are making pulls to punish you or to make it difficult for you to get credit elsewhere then you simply sue them. That is illegal.

Really, if you are worried AmEx is out to get you then don't be their customer. It's that simple. They only want people with very good credit. If you maintain good credit you have nothing to worry about.

Incidentally, I've had AmEx cards for years and have only had 2 hard pulls, both of which occurred when I applied for the cards.

craigm1
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pulls

Postby craigm1 » Mon Jul 18, 2011 5:46 pm

I have to agree the only reason they would do a pull is because of credit card use that is not favorable, I just had them raise me from 10k to 15k and told they I was leasing a car next month and only if they could just do a soft pull to raise me 2 mins later they said your approved, if they are doing pulls randomly, its obviously because of how your using there card.


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LTomBerry
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Postby LTomBerry » Mon Jul 18, 2011 10:18 pm

The only thing it mentions in the Terms & Conditions is this:

You authorize us to verify this information and to obtain reports from consumer reporting agencies. You authorize us and our affiliates and subsidiaries to share information we have about you at any time for marketing and administrative purposes as permitted by law. Upon request, we will tell you if we have received a consumer report and the name and address of the agency that provided it.

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Mogul of Pineapples
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Postby Mogul of Pineapples » Tue Aug 02, 2011 10:01 pm

This is true- You do give American Express the right to do hard pulls when you apply. As DoingHomework mentioned they try and stick with soft but do reserve the right to pull a hard inquiry whenever they wish.
Disclosure: I am a moderator/paid staff of this site, which does have advertising relationships with some credit cards that are discussed and linked to. Regardless, anything I say is my honest opinion.

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