Impossible American Express verification request

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I applied for an Everyday card and Amex sent a letter requesting that I submit a letter from my local bank branch manager confirming my address. Obviously they know my address from public records, my credit report, the fact that I got the letters they sent, and their own records for my existing accounts (I've lived here for the better part of a decade, so it's not like it's unconfirmed or suspicious), so I have no idea why they'd need it.

I submitted the letter exactly as requested. Amex sent me another letter saying they couldn't verify the authenticity of the letter because they were unable to speak to the branch manager. The local branch has a published phone number, but Amex is unwilling to call it because it's not in their database and they refuse to look it up independently. They can only call the main customer service number and, of course, my local branch manager doesn't work in the bank call center. They offered me the option of having the manager call in from the "verified bank phone number", but, of course, the manager would only be able to call from the local number which they said wasn't acceptable.

I spent more than an hour on the phone with an Amex supervisor while they tried unsuccessfully to find a way to confirm my address with the bank; he only wanted to talk to the person who'd written the letter and the bank call center reps couldn't connect him to the local branch. I asked him how I could complete their request and he wasn't able to offer me any solutions.

I emailed the president of the consumer division of American Express, Doug Buckminster, but never heard back. Has anyone else experienced this? Any thoughts or suggestions other than giving up?

Member Summary
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What if all your banking was done online and you had no account with a local bank?!    
Kudos to your local bank, though.... (more)

wyle1 (Jun. 12, 2017 @ 12:57a) |

Try contacting them through facebook or twitter and outline the futility of their request. Not much gets faster positiv... (more)

wyle1 (Jun. 12, 2017 @ 12:59a) |

I find it odd. Most CC companies ask for a utility bill for the address verification. Try that. How badly do you want... (more)

JW10 (Jun. 12, 2017 @ 4:42a) |

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You can go into the bank, call Amex, and then hand the phone over to the branch manager?

It is a pretty absurd demand.

I've never seen such a request.

doveroftke said:   I applied for an Everyday card and Amex sent a letter requesting that I submit a letter from my local bank branch manager confirming my address.
 

  This whole thing sounds absurd. I am surprised the local branch manager even sent them a letter confirming your address. At best, they can send one saying this is the address on their record. That can be achieved by, say a monthly bank statement with your name/address.
In any case, what assurance does that give AM3X have that you didnt provide a fake address to your local bank.

forbin4040 said:   You can go into the bank, call Amex, and then hand the phone over to the branch manager?
  
That doesn't prove it's the manager.  They want the manager at the bank's phone number.

I've heard of requesting a letter of reference from a bank but I wonder what is so special about having your bank verify your address.

Ask AMEX about other known methods: A utility bill with your address, a mortgage statement, property tax bill, etc. If all else fails ask them to come over to your place for lunch.

Could the bank center forward the call or have them call the manager get them on the line and then call Amex and patch them together? Or some other sort of three way call?

Tell Amex to pound sand and get a different card.  Don't waste any more of your time.

burgerwars said:   I've heard of requesting a letter of reference from a bank but I wonder what is so special about having your bank verify your address.

Ask AMEX about other known methods: A utility bill with your address, a mortgage statement, property tax bill, etc. If all else fails ask them to come over to your place for lunch.

  
Tried all of those things. My county property tax records are publicly available online, it would be very simple for them to look it up. I didn't offer lunch, but I said they were welcome to knock on my door and I'd answer it and shake their hand.

The supervisor actually said that he didn't see any avenue for me to fulfill this request. Oh well, it's better than a legendary Amex FR, I guess. I'm just mad because of all the wasted time and energy... they could've just denied the app instead of asking me to jump through an impossible hoop.

this is super easy.

ask amex what phone #'s in the database.

buy a phone spoofer, programming it accordingly

call amex, impersonating branch mgr.

confirm your identity, and your bank balance of $20M

congratulate yourself on your new amex card, with a $2M limit.

What if they ask for employee id ?

RagingBull said:   What if they ask for employee id ?
  Employee # 1

Amex is being passive-aggressive. They don't want to deny you in case they get lonely & need you later.

I've never looked into phone id spoofing, but it's clearly easily and cheaply available based on the hangup calls we get. Amex is either wildly incompetent or deliberately messing with you if they are portraying that as a security verification mechanism. Either way, it doesn't sound like something you can fix.

doveroftke said:   Oh well, it's better than a legendary Amex FR, I guess.How so? This request is impossible, as you said. All you need for FR is a signed 4506-T, a few days, and not have lied about your income.

You have other existing Amex account?  That is absurd.

This sounds like fodder for a CFPB complaint.  Just be sure to keep it focused - they want the manager working in a local bank banch to call them from a call center located god know where.

Tell them they have already confirmed your address and they need no further information.

I had this a few years ago and just reapplied a few months later and wasnt asked again

scripta said:   
doveroftke said:   Oh well, it's better than a legendary Amex FR, I guess.
How so? This request is impossible, as you said. All you need for FR is a signed 4506-T, a few days, and not have lied about your income.

  
In my case I needed to be willing to sign a 4506-T with Equifax Verification Services' name on it. My response to giving Amex a 4506-T would have been no.
Equifax? Give a 4506-T to an organization that makes its living selling people's financial information? Not just no, but HELL NO!

About six months later, I started getting AMEX preapproval letters. Latest was for Blue Cash, $250 bonus plus 0% for 15 months. I might take them up on this one and find out if they still have me under FR.

They don't want to give you the card. Move on.

Could always use a different bank.

doveroftke said:   I applied for an Everyday card and Amex sent a letter requesting that I submit a letter from my local bank branch manager confirming my address. 
  Why do you need a separate card for everyday? Just use the card that gives you the most cash back everyday. Pretty sure AMEX won't be more than 2% like you can get with some other cards.

atikovi said:   
doveroftke said:   I applied for an Everyday card and Amex sent a letter requesting that I submit a letter from my local bank branch manager confirming my address. 
  Why do you need a separate card for everyday? Just use the card that gives you the most cash back everyday. Pretty sure AMEX won't be more than 2% like you can get with some other cards.

They applied for a card branded Amex EveryDay® not a card for everyday expenses.  

https://www.americanexpress.com/us/credit-cards/card/amex-everyd...

HAHA that name is as silly as their marketing team that came up with it to justify their employment. 

doveroftke said:   I applied for an Everyday card and Amex sent a letter requesting that I submit a letter from my local bank branch manager confirming my address. 
What if all your banking was done online and you had no account with a local bank?!    
Kudos to your local bank, though.  It seems like they were willing to jump through the hoops with you while you're trying to acquire an Amex card instead of one from the local bank.
 

Try contacting them through facebook or twitter and outline the futility of their request. Not much gets faster positive response these days than bad PR on social media.

I find it odd. Most CC companies ask for a utility bill for the address verification. Try that. How badly do you want the card? Push back with the CFPB.

https://www.consumerfinance.gov/complaint



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