How Do I Get an Amex Card After Cards Closed for Dispute Abuse


Dear Steve,

I had two Amex cards, Blue and EveryDay. Unfortunately, they were both closed due to “dispute abuse.”

I applied for the Cash Magnet Blue Card, got approved, then when the system updated, it got canceled; how do I get an Amex card?



Dear Hansel,

You don’t.

It seems the previous pattern of disputes triggered some computer notice that dumped you into a category of internal concern. You have no idea how much a dispute costs Amex, and it would seem that the number of disputes made had eroded the profit forecast on accounts held by you.

It would appear it was not until your Cash Magnet application was further reviewed after issuance or they updated their computer system that it flagged your account as a risk.

Think about any credit card like this, it’s not your ball, and the other people can take their ball and go home at any time. You can have an American Express card for decades, and one day they can just cancel it.

Any issuer can do that.

Don’t hate the player, hate the game.

There are many credit cards issuers out there. Find another one that you don’t have an internal history with and apply there.

If you pay your credit cards off every cycle, the interest rate is not the deciding factor you should consider.

Instead, look for card perks that you will benefit from. For example, if you shop on Amazon, look at the Amazon card that gives you a discount on purchases. If you travel, look for a travel card. I have not paid for a hotel room in years. I always use points for free rooms. Look at the Marriott Bonvoy card.

I had an Amex card included in my bankruptcy in 1990; to this day, they will not give me a new one. They never forget.

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It’s time to move on.

Dispute Abuse

You can get your account flagged for chargebacks or disputes to transactions that don’t fall within the three reasons under the Fair Credit Billing Act:

Someone else used your card without permission. That is just plain fraud. Notify the card issuer immediately.

There was a billing error. You found a billing error where you were charged more than the purchase amount. I don’t see many people disputing charges where they were charged less than they should have been.

Do You Have a Question You'd Like Help With? Contact Debt Coach Damon Day. Click here to reach Damon.

You’ve made a good-faith effort to resolve a problem with the merchant. You’ve tried to resolve the issue with the merchant but have run into a roadblock. You have documentation of the problem and your efforts. Be sure to check to see your credit card agreement will allow you to dispute the charge before you do. Sometimes foreign transactions are not eligible for chargebacks, and the distance from your billing address can impact the outcome.

The Federal Trade Commission helps to clarify this third category. “Disputes about the quality of goods and services are not “billing errors,” so the dispute procedure doesn’t apply. To take advantage of this protection, you must have made the purchase (it must be for more than $50) in your home state or within 100 miles of your current billing address, and make a good faith effort to resolve the dispute with the seller first.”

Other types of disputes can be labeled as dispute abuse and are sometimes called Friendly Fraud.

Prevent Dispute Abuse

In the future, you can prevent “dispute abuse” by contacting the merchant directly and promptly to resolve any issue. You should document your communications with the merchant, including the date, time, and who you spoke with. In addition, gathering all your supporting documentation and photos that support your claim is beneficial.

If you are running into a lack of response and still feel you have a valid dispute request, you can file a dispute with the card company.

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If you have that kind of documentation for your past disputes, you should contact Amex and share it with them to recategorize your disputes. Otherwise, a pattern of chargebacks and disputes can be perceived as a pattern of abuse.

Damon Day - Pro Debt Coach

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Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.
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