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credit & debt

American Express, Discover Cardholders to Get Refunds

Some customers of these two credit card issuers will receive money as a result of government enforcement actions.

If you have an American Express or Discover credit card, you might be getting money from your card company soon. That's because the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) recently ordered the two credit card issuers to refund customers for illegal practices and deceptive marketing.

The CFPB ordered American Express to repay an estimated $85 million to about 250,000 customers. Cardholders who were promised $300 for signing up for a Blue Sky Credit Card but never received the money will be paid $300. American Express will also reimburse customers who paid excessive late fees. And it will repay customers who paid off old debt because they were promised that their credit scores would improve. American Express never reported the payments to the credit bureaus.

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The CFPB and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) ordered Discover to refund about $200 million to more than 3.5 million customers who were mislead into paying for add-on products such as payment protection, credit score tracking, identity theft protection and wallet protection. The CFPB found that Discover's representatives implied that these products were free, did not disclose eligibility requirements and added charges for the products without some customers' consent.

American Express and Discover will automatically refund customers with open accounts by crediting their accounts. Customers who have closed their accounts will receive a check in the mail.

The CFPB says that consumers do not have to take any action to receive their refunds. Any offer from a person or group to help you obtain your refund for a fee is a scam. Also watch out for scammers who might ask you to divulge personal information in order to receive a refund.

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