Cumulative list of bank and credit card bans

This post is long overdue, eh?  Being known as #shutdownsalldayeveryday, I get reader stories of shutdowns and try to figure out what happened and what they can do.  I make these posts to help you guys NOT get shut down.  I know some of you may say, “Hey I’ve cycled 3X for years with bank A and have been fine,” and while that may work for you, it may not work for others.  It’s very YMMV; I’m just trying to put some guard rails in place for you.  You can keep going over the edge and they may never axe you or they may axe you a few months down the road.

Let’s start with some helpful guidelines to not get axed that applies to all banks:

 

Chase

How you’ll get banned:

  • Ramping up spending too quickly like yours truly.
  • Ink abuse
  • Anonymous payments
  • Going fast and furious with a new card (similar to the first data point)
  • Doing funny business with your checking account (I would not have a bank account with them if possible)
  • Having high utilization on your CR (they soft pull and see high utilization)

Collateral damage?

  • Yes, people in the same household will likely get axed down the road like my wife.

Can I protest?

  • I have heard of instances that people have overturned the ban.  I haven’t done it myself, but others have.  Highly YMMV

What about my rewards?

  • Chase will give you 30 days to liquidate your UR.

How long is the ban?

  • No hard and fast rule here, but after a year or 2, you should be able to get back in with their co-branded cards and MAYBE a UR card.  However, there are stories where those eventually got shut down too, so just because you got back in, it may only be short lived.  It seems there are varying degrees of shutdowns.  If you did perk abuse, that ban may be longer.  If it’s because they saw high utilization on other cards, you can push hard and possibly re-open later.

 

AMEX

When AMEX drops the axe, it’s usually for a certain product like the OBC card.   The only stories of portfolio shut down was due to people overstating their income.  I did hear from one Twitter user who got his portfolio axed due to cycling, but I think that’s far less common than the other banks.  They will usually FR you first before dropping the axe.

How you’ll get banned:

  • Overstating income
  • Cycling

Collateral damage?

  • Not sure

Can I protest?

  • Recent CFPB data points of the AMEX Plat 100K MR lead to nowhere, so I’m guessing CFPB won’t help

What about my rewards?

  • They do give you time to cash out (at least with the OBC)

How long is the ban?

  • A couple of readers have mentioned that they got back in after failing a FR (one as early as a few weeks later; the other a year later.)  One reader who understated income hasn’t been able to get back in.  There seems to be varying degrees of shutdowns with AMEX, so the ban may depend on the reason for the axe.

 

Citi

Anonymous payments leads the reason here as well as cycling.  A reader story from a while back.

How you’ll get banned:

  • Anonymous payments
  • Cycling

Collateral damage?

  • Yes, people in the same household will likely get axed down the road

Can I protest?

  • You can CFPB them, but I hear they’ll just laugh at it and say, “Aww that’s cute,” then wipe their ass with it.

What about my rewards?

  • Say goodbye to them!  I have heard small claims working for a few readers

How long is the ban?

  • I have not heard anyone getting back in, so it may be 7 years or maybe a lifetime.

 

Bank of America

I haven’t heard of too many BOA bans or I just can’t recall.  The only one I know of was due to MO’s in the checking account,thus proving once again, don’t shit where you eat.  Due to their lax churning rules, this is one bank you don’t want to mess around with anonymous payments or cycling.  A reader added that Merrill + customers with 100K are more at risk due to the increased benefits and free trades and that it might be better to just park the cash in your checking for the benefits.

How you’ll get banned:

  • Messing with your bank account
  • Sudden ramp up in spend
  • Anonymous payments
  • Cycling

Collateral damage?

  • Not sure

Can I protest?

  • Not sure

What about my rewards?

  • Not sure

How long is the ban?

  • The one reader I know hasn’t even tried to get back in.

 

Capital One

I’ve been hearing more and more of Capital One shutdowns of late.  Mostly has to do with anonymous payments (even when it was years ago.)  So steer clear of anonymous payments!  Also funny business with the checking account may get a portfolio axe (checking, cc, investments.)

How you’ll get banned:

  • Anonymous payments (even when it’s in the past)
  • Cycling (some people can cycle, some can’t.  Best to be very tenured if you continue to cycle)
  • Funny business with checking accounts

Collateral damage?

  • Yes I hear the household gets the axe.

Can I protest?

  • I haven’t heard of anyone protesting just because they didn’t really care that much.

What about my rewards?

  • I hear they will cash out your points for you when you get axed

How long is the ban?

  • A reader says it may be indefinite

Barclay’s

Barclay’s doesn’t like anonymous payments or continued cycling (that’s what did me in.)  What’s worse is they will cut you and anyone associated with you, even if they don’t live in the same household.  Vicious!

How you’ll get banned:

  • Cycling
  • Anonymous payments
  • Being associated with a banned user.

Collateral damage?

  • Yes, you, your grandma, your hair dresser and anyone associated with you will get axed, even if they don’t live in the same household.  A reader also told me his wife got the axe after he added himself to her card (he was banned previously.)

Can I protest?

  • You can CFPB, but that won’t re-open your account.

What about my rewards?

  • You’ll have to CFPB them to get your rewards.

How long is the ban?

  • I have heard people getting back in after ~6 months, but it’s YMMV if it’s short lived or they’ll re-axe you.

US Bank

I was axed due to a banking issue, not credit.  I hear they are semi tolerant with cycling but I wouldn’t push the envelope.  Normal rules apply here as well

How you’ll get banned:

Collateral damage?

  • My wife wasn’t an AU at the time so she was spared.

Can I protest?

  • Not sure

What about my rewards?

  • I had the Cash card and they did mail me a rewards check

How long is the ban?

  • I have not heard anyone getting back in, so it may be 7 years or maybe a lifetime.

Comenity

Most likely the easiest to get shut down from.  Recently a reader told me he got shut down after 2 purchases.  They said they reviewed his CR and didn’t like what they saw.  It means they are assholes for 1) hard pulling you, 2) taking your annual fee, and 3) axing you months later.

How you’ll get banned:

Collateral damage?

  • Not sure.  Odd that they didn’t axe my Victoria’s Secret card, so it may be a product axe.

Can I protest?

What about my rewards?

  • The points should already be banked in Virgin America or whomever

How long is the ban?

  • Not sure.

 

Wells Fargo

They finally got strict about their cycling now.  Before that, ppl got axed due to money orders into their checking account.

How you’ll get banned:

Collateral damage?

  • Not sure

Can I protest?

  • You can CFPB them, but I hear it goes nowhere.

What about my rewards?

  • Say goodbye to them!  I hear small claims works though

How long is the ban?

  • Not sure

 

Discover

I haven’t heard of too many Discover shutdowns.  I know some people cycled with the Miles 3X the first year.  I have heard of a checking shutdown, and it may have only been a product vs portfolio shut down.

How you’ll get banned:

  • Not sure

Collateral damage?

  • Not sure

Can I protest?

  • Not sure

What about my rewards?

  • Not sure

How long is the ban?

  • Not sure

 

If you have any additional data points, comment below or email them to me and I’ll add it anonymously.

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  • Dave L

    I can add a data point. I was banned by Bank of America presumably for doing too many money orders. I had a longstanding relationship with them.

    I just tested my ban by going for the Merrill card a couple months ago and based on the rejection, it was clear that I was still banned. I would say it’s been about 3 years now.

  • Edward

    I was shutdown by USB last year for applying for a new credit card and reconning! I already had 4 seasoned TLs with them but I had opened 8 cards in the last year. I did do some MS on the FP (serve loads and funded 1 acct). Not sure which got me shutdown. Still fighting with them.

  • Judy Fehnel

    For us Newbies please spell out words instead of abbreviations otherwise the information isn’t useful! Many of the comments include initials not words?? Am i the only one that needs this help??

  • Mei.

    I know a few people who had their accounts closed by Discover for eith taking advantage of the double cashback promotion (think Applepay 10%*2) or making large returns using their return protection.

    • Miles per Day

      Odd. I know a lot of people who hit Applepay pretty hard (meaning maxed it out like myself) and were fine. Thanks for dp though.

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  • Mark Ostermann

    The WF Signature finally has a sign up bonus online (don’t think it has before but could be wrong). I know people have been shut down for killing the 5x in the first 6 months but does anyone know what type of levels have been working out ok without issue?

  • Jordan

    You are the Jean Luc Picard of our generation. Boldly going where no one has gone before. Awesome info.

  • pin

    I have not been shutdown by Citi but my sister got so comfortable and cozy that she started doing WMBP for two months. She’s had her double cash account since Oct 2014 and has $18.xK CL that she cycled up to 4x since the start and never heard a peep from them until she started this WMBP and Citi popo got her. I’ve warned her about doing this WMBP and now she believes it is the cause of her account closure. On FT, there’s a lot of DPs about shitty not liking WMBP but there are those who continue with it with the popo not catching them.

    • Mark Ostermann

      I think Discover is the way to go with WMBP

      • Miles per Day

        Nope. No WMBP to ANYONE! Just buy a MO instead.

  • Josh

    Wife and I got shutdown on Amex FR for not being able to provide business tax returns a few years ago. After one year we were able to reapply for everything successfully.

    • Miles per Day

      I wonder if there are varying degrees of AMEX shutdowns and yours was a soft shutdown since all you did was fail to provide a tax return whereas people who overstate income may get a harsher shutdown. Thanks for data point though.

    • James

      Amex shut down all my accounts when I declined a FR. I also lost all my MR points during the shutdown. Fiver years later, Amex will not approve a credit card application without provide IRS income verification.

      Lesson learned: Avoid heavy gift card purchases per week. Go lite.

      • Josh

        That happened to my wife last year. She’s had to send in the IRS form for the past few apps. Oddly enough the phantom 100k Amex Platinum at Thanksgiving was auto approved along with a Schwab Platinum on the same day. Haven’t tried anything since those.

        • Miles per Day

          James, I mean, don’t take this the wrong way, but if you just provide them the info, then you may get approved again. It’s your choice to not send to them and it’s their choice to not approve you. Like me going into my bank and asking to withdraw money and me refusing to show them ID.

  • Mark Ostermann

    Did you mean overstating their income instead of understating income for Amex?

    • Miles per Day

      Right. Thanks for correction.

  • MAG

    How would you classify on anonymous payments? Are we talking about paying Citi cards with a debit card?

    • Miles per Day

      Click through the link in the post. I’ve stopped paying Citi with debit fwiw.

  • Ken

    Having a Chase checking account is fine if you’re only doing it for the bonus. People I know have been opening/closing accounts for the bonus only and haven’t had any problems. Bad things happen when you introduce your account to MOs.

    • Bad things also happen when there is ANY sort of suspicious activity in your checking account (i.e. high volume of deposits). Not worth the risk especially considering Chase doesn’t even pay interest on their checking account balances.

      • Ken

        Like I said, get the Chase accounts for the bonus only and you won’t have anything to worry about. Don’t do anything suspicious and there is no risk, plus it’s an incredibly easy $500 every year.

    • Mark Ostermann

      With 5/24 I have wondered if having the accounts helps at all with pre qualified offers.

      • Ken

        I’ve wondered the same thing. Once I get my hands on one of those $500 checking/savings bonuses I’ll test it out.

        • Mark Ostermann

          My wife has had the checking for a while and we just opened the 10k savings bonus for her last month so I am curious to see if she gets anything now. Only had FU when she signed up for the savings so we shall see.

          • Ken

            Have you gone into the branch to see if there are any pre-qualified offers for her? Wife and I both have offers for the FU and I have one for the CSP, but we really, really both want the CSR.

          • Mark Ostermann

            Yeah when she opened the account she had the FU offer but didn’t take it so I am going to have her go back in a week or two and see if anything else was added.

            I have had both accounts for about 2 years but keep almost nothing in them and had no offers at all last weekend. I would kill for the 50k and CSP right now but was hoping for the 100k CSR.

          • Ken

            You’re lucky your wife is so willing to do this. Mine is Ok on most things, but some things like talking on the phone she just refuses to do. Sometimes I have luck with her authorizing me to speak on her behalf, but sometimes it’s a totally lost cause. Gotta pick my battles. Though, she sure doesn’t seem to mins CX F and 4 weeks of free travel.

            I haven’t had the CSP since Nov 2014 so I was surprised when they offered it to me before the 2 years was up. I’ll try a few more times for the CSR but I’d still love a CSP and FU in my stable. Currently have 2x Freedom, Hyatt, IHG, and Ink Plus. Those two Freedom cards are the 2nd oldest cards I have from 06 and 07. I have a feeling they’d want to cancel one of them to approve a FU or even CSR. I’ll never close the IHG/Hyatt cards as long as they keep handing out free nights. Even if I can’t use overseas it’s still roughly a 50% discount over the cheapest paid rates. I’ve gotten over 5 cards in the past few months so there’s no way I’ll ever get down to 5/24 levels.

          • Mark Ostermann

            haha trust me it is like pulling teeth sometimes. I have to bribe her most of the time…I told her she would get half of the savings bonus to blow on her girls trip to NYC that I paid for with points 🙂 – I really wanted her to sign up for it just to see if the offers improve. Trust me I got the stink eye when I told she needs to check again for offers and just get the FU if they haven’t changed!

            I think I will cancel the Hyatt and IHG in a few years just to get the sign up bonus again since they are not 5/24.

            I will never be under 5/24 but I have considered laying of her apps for a few years to get her under it and just hammer my stuff extra hard. But the Comp Pass will probably be gone in 2 years so it probably won’t be worth messing with anyways!

          • Ken

            Hahaha, funny how that works out huh.

            I forgot that Hyatt/IHG aren’t subject to 5/24. But I have a feeling that by the time I’m eligible for them again they will be.

          • Mark Ostermann

            I think her Hyatt comes up on 2 years in a month or so – I will have to make sure to grab that one before they change it again 🙂

          • Ken

            My wife doesn’t even have a Hyatt card yet, so I’ll wait till around my anniversary and then get one for her so we’ll be sync’d up.

          • Mark Ostermann

            That is the way to do it! I am almost hoping that she gets targeted for one of the points offers that were kicking around last year (40-50k) since it would go further for us then the 2 free nights.

          • Ken

            Oh yeah, I’d take a points offer over 2 nights in a heartbeat. Most of our Hyatt nights are in Houses and Places so all under 10k points/night. That’s 8 nights at 5k for the 40k offer. That’s YUGE!

          • Mark Ostermann

            Same here nothing more then 15k unless we are going to NYC or something like that.

          • Mark Ostermann

            Well she stopped in today and not only did she not have any new offers but the FU offer was gone….guess we will try again in Feb and see what happens.

          • Ken

            Oh no!