Dealing with debt collectors for your American Express card.

Can I call American Express and set up payments? I got an offer to pay less than the full amount from a different debt collector than who has my account now. Can I agree and set up payments for that amount with the new collection firm?

I stopped paying my American Express account when I got laid off. I am working again, and it has taken this long to catch up with most bills. I want to tackle this one, but I cannot pay the full amount.

American Express handles little of the collection activity for the credit cards people fall behind paying. Your options for dealing with Amex accounts that are already placed with a debt collector (no matter the type), are going to be limited to working things out with the collector in most cases.

You can pay or settle with debt collectors on American Express credit cards at the different stages of collections. Below is general information about resolving an AMEX account. I can get more specific with each individual persons situation when you post details, and the debt collector you are dealing with, in the comments at the bottom of this page. Be sure to include how long ago it was that you last made a payment.

You are not behind or not yet 3 to 4 months late with AMEX payments.

AMEX has some programs available for repayment when you are struggling with your finances. You can call a customer service rep at AMEX, and if early enough (within a few months of missing payments), they can help you bring your account current, or enroll you in a temporary repayment plan. These plans are generally going to offer you a lower monthly credit card payment for several months, and up to 12.

The lower AMEX bill is because they are dropping your interest rate down during the months you are on the hardship plan.

Try to avoid taking advantage of any short term payment plan if your finan

cial setbacks are not just temporary. You have no assurance the AMEX will extend the lower payment plan once your time on the temporary plan is up. That means your monthly payments will go back up, and may still be unaffordable.

American Express also regularly works with nonprofit credit counselors who can get your monthly payments reduced, and get your interest rate lowered for the life of the balance, or while paying through the counseling agency.

You can be current with your credit card payments and still work with a counselor to pay your AMEX bill each month.

If you are not yet 4 or more months delinquent in paying your AMEX credit card, and would like to see if you can get a lower monthly payment for the life of the balance, I would encourage you to consult with a credit counselor and get an exact payment quote at 800-939-8357, choose option 1.

If you have more than one or two credit cards you are struggling with, a counselor can help you consolidate most or all of those accounts into one lower payment.

Unpaid American Express credit cards are not sold to debt buyers.

One of the first things to point out to people dealing with American Express accounts in collection is that they do not sell debt.

Many major credit card issuers sell off some of their credit card bills (that remain unpaid long enough) to debt buyers. AMEX does not bundle up unpaid credit card accounts to sell off as a general practice. That is not to say AMEX will always retain ownership of their delinquent debts (they have since the 70’s). Bank policies do change from time to time, and operation realities could lead to AMEX changes too. But for now, AMEX is ultimately the legal owner of your unpaid credit card account.

This is an important distinction to point out. There are situations where someone dealing with a debt buyer collecting will have additional strategies to consider.

Amex is also one of few credit card lenders of its size that has no internal recovery and collection department to speak of. That is not to say they are lacking in customer service for their credit card account holders, but that once your account is behind enough to be dropped into their collection pipeline, you are typically not going to be connected to internal AMEX collection resources. You are, more often than not, going to be routed to third party collectors that AMEX sent your account to.

If you have had financial setbacks that caused you to stop paying American Express, but your accounts are already out for collection, you are generally going to find that any payment arrangements you make, settlement offers you receive, or are able negotiate yourself, will go through the debt collector that is currently collecting for AMEX.

Settling your AMEX debt with a debt collector.

The type of settlement you can realistically aim for with AMEX credit cards can depend on several things. Your account usage leading up to missing payments is sometimes part of the equation, and so is how collectable you look to the debt collector handling the account for AMEX.

Who the debt collector is can also impact your settlement opportunities. Not all American Express debt collectors are the same. Let me break this down a bit.

The most common debt collector is a working on a contingency. If they can get you to pay something through communications through the phone and mail, they get to keep a percentage of what you pay. American Express accounts can settle for as low as 35 percent of today’s balance with some of the collection agencies they use, while others may not settle for under 50 or even 60 percent.

There are files that are flagged for no settlement. Some of the reasons this may happen are:

Your account with American Express is too new.

Recent AMEX card cash advances.

Amount owed consists largely of balance transfer.

The balance owed at time of default was made up of mostly recent months credit usage, or big ticket items.

There are large debt collection law firms that pick up large blocks of AMEX accounts to collect. They will call and write to you in seemingly the same way as a third party debt collector I just described. But do not let the similarity fool you. Some of these attorney networks, like Zwicker and Associates, can and do file collection lawsuits with the courts.

Smaller local collection attorneys may contact you about your unpaid American Express card. And any collection letter you receive from an attorney with letterhead showing an address in your state, or one neighboring you, is a clear indication that your risks of being sued to get you to pay have escalated.

Settlements with attorney debt collectors for American Express accounts, whether in or out of court, tend to be at 50 percent or higher. If you appear highly collectable, and are already being sued, decent settlement percentages are harder to negotiate. If you are reading this and have recently been sued for an Amex account, post where you are at in the process in the comments below for more feedback.

What if you cannot pay or resolve your debt right now?

You mentioned you are not able to pay what is owed, and would hopefully be able to get a payment plan to only pay back what a prior debt collector offered as a settlement. Unfortunately, those lower balance settlement offers usually come with an expiration date. You can try to negotiate the same deal with the new debt collector, but they are not bound by that prior offer, and settlement amounts you can realistically target can change dramatically the more time you need to make monthly payments.

Remember that a debt collector is all about how the timing is perfect for you to go ahead and pay them. Anything you could say about how tough your finances are at the moment will circle back to what you can pay today and in the near future. Every communication from collectors is for the exclusive purpose of getting money from you. That is how debt collectors are, for the most part.

You need to be concerned with your whole financial picture, and not just this one bill. No matter what the sense of urgency you feel when you are dealing with collectors, always know your cash flow, and never agree to something you are the least bit concerned you will be able to follow through with.

Unless you are dealing with an attorney debt collector licensed in your state, or have already been sued for collection, you probably do not have a debt emergency. And while I do recommend taking advantage of some of the better offers to settle your AMEX accounts with debt collectors early on, you can only do what you can. And even if you are in late stage collections with AMEX (in the courts or about to be), you still have options to navigate the situation.

Anyone dealing with an AMEX credit card with a debt collector is welcome to post questions and concerns in the comments below for feedback.

Oh… and I should point out that not paying your AMEX credit cards may result in losing miles and other points in rewards programs, and those not paying their full balances back may not be able to get approved for American Express accounts in the future.

I have been sued by Discover, Chase or American Express

By: Jeff Curl, San Mateo Bankruptcy Attorney

Have you been sued by Discover, Chase or AMEX? In my recent experience, these three credit card companies seem to sue more quickly than other creditors. Counsel for Chase mentioned filing something on the order of 5,000 new cases per month. With such voluminous filings, it is their hope and desire that your will either pay them, or go into denial, bury your head in the sand and not do anything.

The reason for hoping that you do nothing is that in California, after your are served with a summons and complaint, you have 30 days to respond to the complaint. If you fail to do so, the creditor can request a default – at that point, the debtor essentially “wins.” The default permits the creditor/prevailing party to obtain a judgment for damages. With the default and judgment in its pocket, a prevailing creditor can seek to garnish wages, levy bank accounts or seek a variety of other methods for enforcing its judgment.

If you are sued by debt collectors such as Zwicker & Associates, Winn Law Group, Mann Bracken, or J.P. Morgan Chase Legal Department that sometimes represent these creditors, do not ignore it. That only invites invasive collection activities. Sometimes fighting it reveals that the creditor cannot prove its claim. Sometimes bankruptcy is inevitable anyways, and filing your bankruptcy petition will stop the state court case in its tracks.

If you are sued, seek legal advice right away. It is always disappointing when a client comes to us after garnishment and bank account levies because they panicked and did nothing. It is often the case that we could have filed their bankruptcy petition and prevented this in the first place, or that they may have had a viable defense.

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The Langel firm will defend consumers against New York state court collection lawsuits brought by PYOD, LLC. In appropriate cases, we may investigate claims against PYOD, LLC for violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, Fair Credit Reporting Act, and other applicable laws.

As of July 2013, PYOD, LLC has filed at least 115 cases in Kings County alone. PYOD, LLC is mainly represented by Forster & Garbus, LLP, and Mel S. Harris & Associates, LLC.

PYD, LLC purchases defaulted consumer debt to collect and sue on them.

PYOD, LLC is a foreign limited liability company incorporated in Delaware and is principally located at 625 Pilot Road, Las Vegas, Nevada, 89119. PYOD, LLC is licensed (#1326537) by the Department of Consumer Affairs to collect debts in the City of New York.

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If youve received a letter from Zwicker and Associates PC theres a pretty good chance that a credit card company is thinking about suing you for an.

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If youve been sued by PYOD LLC contact our New York debt collection defense firm for help as soon as possible We will fight to protect your rights.

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Consumer Financial Protection Bureau 2015 Year in Review Consumers complained about 716 different debt collectors to the CFPB Approximately.

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Debt Collection Defense Defend or Settle Lawsuits or Vacate Default Judgments Beat Midland Funding CACH LLC Portfolio Recovery or LVNV.

Sued by Fulton Friedman amp Gullace LLP The Langel Firm has launched a Class Action against this company For help contact the firm today.

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Californias Leading Debt Relief Attorneys The Fullman Firm Saved Clients over 425 Million in 2015 Alone Have You Been Sued by a Debt Collector.

Zwicker & Associates and Discover Dismiss Suit; Sued Client in the Wrong County

A debt collector must sue you in the correct state and in the correct county. That does not mean that if you get notice of a suit in the wrong county you can ignore it, but it does mean that we can get the case dismissed. Sometimes the debt collector will re-file the lawsuit, but often they won’t.

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The Fullman Firm is a law firm specializing in consumer and credit law, and debt settlement, serving all of California.

We have helped our clients beat Midland Funding, Hunt & Henriques, Citibank, American Express, Zwicker & Assoc., Patenaude & Felix, Harris & Zide, Portfolio Recovery, Rory Clark, Legal Recovery Law Group, Bank of America, FIA Card Services, Capital One, LVNV, The Moore Law Group, Wells Fargo, Michael Sipes, CACH LLC, Suttell Hammer & White, Mountain Lion Acquisitions, D. Scott Carruthers, Persolve, Mandarich Law Group, Zee Law Group, CIR Law Offices, Cavalry SPV, GCFS, Winn Law Group, National Collegiate, and many more.

Zwicker & Associates and Discover Dismiss Suit; Sued Client in the Wrong County

A debt collector must sue you in the correct state and in the correct county. That does not mean that if you get notice of a suit in the wrong county you can ignore it, but it does mean that we can get the case dismissed. Sometimes the debt collector will re-file the lawsuit, but often they won’t.

How to settle on an American express card with Zwicker and Associates

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I've settled my Chase and Advanta Cards at 35% after only three - four months on non-payment. My american express went to Zwicker and associates - I have been negotiating with them - but can't get them past 55% and now they tell me they are filing suit - last missed payment was Nov 08 - and it's march 09. Are they lying to me? I know it's illegal - but what does everything think? Also has anyone settled for less than 55% with them - I hate to pay them that much when everyone else got 35% and were actually not bad to work with.