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For anyone still wondering if this card/program still exists, it does.

Long story short, I hit the skids about two years ago, sort of the perfect storm in life, job change, more babies, and less income.

Burned AMEX for about $14K. I have since paid back ~$12K.

 

Got the letter from AMEX today to regain card membership as long as I pay the remaining balance.

I called to verify and all is well, the gentlemen asked what went bad after so many years of good.

I explained, apologized, and he verified the offer and that the account is still in house.

I will pay the remainder next month and get back in the boat with AMEX and pray for the magic "bad-to-positive" tradeline.

 

I just wish most credit companies operated this way, to me its win-win for all parties.

Just wanted to share for those mystified by the Optima/Oasis program.

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It's a great program.

They offered it to me but no way I was going to come up with 40k to PIF.

So I settled for 15k and got back in about 7 years later.

$40k is a lot!

 

You're lucky it only took you 7 years to get back in. I know people who are 25 years and waiting.

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I just wish most credit companies operated this way, to me its win-win for all parties.

Agreed. The lender gets all their money back and the consumer gets another chance. Otherwise, beyond the threat of being sued, the consumer has no incentive to pay it off, since FICO doesn't distinguish between paid and unpaid COs. (Caveat: unpaid COs can have an effect on util).

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It is nice of American Express to do this but to be honest, a lot of companies will work something out with you before they send it off to collections. It is definitely embarrassing to be in a difficult situation in life suddenly where you cannot pay your bills so you ignore the calls and the mail. I have been there personally and it was the wrong decision to make now that I have been working on my credit again and I'm finally with clean reports.

 

It is all about communication with your creditors/utilities/etc when something drastic happens to you. You need to call them immediately and let them know what the situation is. Let them make the choice whether or not to work with you due to the circumstances. At least they will keep a record of you attempting to work something out and not just hanging them out to dry. Sometimes you have to swallow your pride and ask for help. There are many businesses like American Express and friends/family/strangers out there willing to help others if you put forth effort on your part and keep to your word on any promises you make on repayment/payment schedules.

 

I am really happy for you that you got a second chance with them. I just got my first American Express in my life this month and I am very happy with their rewards program and customer service. Just try to contact them next time and work something out. No one wants to pay all them legal fees to sue someone that's willing to make payments on an overdue account/bill until they're caught up. Being in the dumps at certain times in my life has only made me stronger financially and I won't be scared to ask for help next time a bad situation pops up.

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It is nice of American Express to do this but to be honest, a lot of companies will work something out with you before they send it off to collections. It is definitely embarrassing to be in a difficult situation in life suddenly where you cannot pay your bills so you ignore the calls and the mail. I have been there personally and it was the wrong decision to make now that I have been working on my credit again and I'm finally with clean reports.

 

It is all about communication with your creditors/utilities/etc when something drastic happens to you. You need to call them immediately and let them know what the situation is. Let them make the choice whether or not to work with you due to the circumstances. At least they will keep a record of you attempting to work something out and not just hanging them out to dry. Sometimes you have to swallow your pride and ask for help. There are many businesses like American Express and friends/family/strangers out there willing to help others if you put forth effort on your part and keep to your word on any promises you make on repayment/payment schedules.

 

I am really happy for you that you got a second chance with them. I just got my first American Express in my life this month and I am very happy with their rewards program and customer service. Just try to contact them next time and work something out. No one wants to pay all them legal fees to sue someone that's willing to make payments on an overdue account/bill until they're caught up. Being in the dumps at certain times in my life has only made me stronger financially and I won't be scared to ask for help next time a bad situation pops up.

I haven't heard many that will work with you like this years after the debt has been written off.

 

What AmEx does is unique in that years after they wrote off the debt they guarantee you a new card if you make them whole. What other card issuer does that?

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It is nice of American Express to do this but to be honest, a lot of companies will work something out with you before they send it off to collections. It is definitely embarrassing to be in a difficult situation in life suddenly where you cannot pay your bills so you ignore the calls and the mail. I have been there personally and it was the wrong decision to make now that I have been working on my credit again and I'm finally with clean reports.

 

It is all about communication with your creditors/utilities/etc when something drastic happens to you. You need to call them immediately and let them know what the situation is. Let them make the choice whether or not to work with you due to the circumstances. At least they will keep a record of you attempting to work something out and not just hanging them out to dry. Sometimes you have to swallow your pride and ask for help. There are many businesses like American Express and friends/family/strangers out there willing to help others if you put forth effort on your part and keep to your word on any promises you make on repayment/payment schedules.

 

I am really happy for you that you got a second chance with them. I just got my first American Express in my life this month and I am very happy with their rewards program and customer service. Just try to contact them next time and work something out. No one wants to pay all them legal fees to sue someone that's willing to make payments on an overdue account/bill until they're caught up. Being in the dumps at certain times in my life has only made me stronger financially and I won't be scared to ask for help next time a bad situation pops up.

 

 

I would never pay an issuer for the privileged to apply for a mainline card.

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It is nice of American Express to do this but to be honest, a lot of companies will work something out with you before they send it off to collections. It is definitely embarrassing to be in a difficult situation in life suddenly where you cannot pay your bills so you ignore the calls and the mail. I have been there personally and it was the wrong decision to make now that I have been working on my credit again and I'm finally with clean reports.

 

It is all about communication with your creditors/utilities/etc when something drastic happens to you. You need to call them immediately and let them know what the situation is. Let them make the choice whether or not to work with you due to the circumstances. At least they will keep a record of you attempting to work something out and not just hanging them out to dry. Sometimes you have to swallow your pride and ask for help. There are many businesses like American Express and friends/family/strangers out there willing to help others if you put forth effort on your part and keep to your word on any promises you make on repayment/payment schedules.

 

I am really happy for you that you got a second chance with them. I just got my first American Express in my life this month and I am very happy with their rewards program and customer service. Just try to contact them next time and work something out. No one wants to pay all them legal fees to sue someone that's willing to make payments on an overdue account/bill until they're caught up. Being in the dumps at certain times in my life has only made me stronger financially and I won't be scared to ask for help next time a bad situation pops up.

I haven't heard many that will work with you like this years after the debt has been written off.

 

What AmEx does is unique in that years after they wrote off the debt they guarantee you a new card if you make them whole. What other card issuer does that?

+1

 

The Optima program is more than just a payment arrangement on old debt.

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It is nice of American Express to do this but to be honest, a lot of companies will work something out with you before they send it off to collections. It is definitely embarrassing to be in a difficult situation in life suddenly where you cannot pay your bills so you ignore the calls and the mail. I have been there personally and it was the wrong decision to make now that I have been working on my credit again and I'm finally with clean reports.

 

It is all about communication with your creditors/utilities/etc when something drastic happens to you. You need to call them immediately and let them know what the situation is. Let them make the choice whether or not to work with you due to the circumstances. At least they will keep a record of you attempting to work something out and not just hanging them out to dry. Sometimes you have to swallow your pride and ask for help. There are many businesses like American Express and friends/family/strangers out there willing to help others if you put forth effort on your part and keep to your word on any promises you make on repayment/payment schedules.

 

I am really happy for you that you got a second chance with them. I just got my first American Express in my life this month and I am very happy with their rewards program and customer service. Just try to contact them next time and work something out. No one wants to pay all them legal fees to sue someone that's willing to make payments on an overdue account/bill until they're caught up. Being in the dumps at certain times in my life has only made me stronger financially and I won't be scared to ask for help next time a bad situation pops up.

 

 

I would never pay an issuer for the privileged to apply for a mainline card.

Depending on the amount, an instant 20-year tradeline could be attractive for some.

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It is nice of American Express to do this but to be honest, a lot of companies will work something out with you before they send it off to collections. It is definitely embarrassing to be in a difficult situation in life suddenly where you cannot pay your bills so you ignore the calls and the mail. I have been there personally and it was the wrong decision to make now that I have been working on my credit again and I'm finally with clean reports.

 

It is all about communication with your creditors/utilities/etc when something drastic happens to you. You need to call them immediately and let them know what the situation is. Let them make the choice whether or not to work with you due to the circumstances. At least they will keep a record of you attempting to work something out and not just hanging them out to dry. Sometimes you have to swallow your pride and ask for help. There are many businesses like American Express and friends/family/strangers out there willing to help others if you put forth effort on your part and keep to your word on any promises you make on repayment/payment schedules.

 

I am really happy for you that you got a second chance with them. I just got my first American Express in my life this month and I am very happy with their rewards program and customer service. Just try to contact them next time and work something out. No one wants to pay all them legal fees to sue someone that's willing to make payments on an overdue account/bill until they're caught up. Being in the dumps at certain times in my life has only made me stronger financially and I won't be scared to ask for help next time a bad situation pops up.

Sage advice Bob, however, I did call everyone.

Some were happy to help and some did not care.

At the end of the day when I put it all the numbers together, there was simply just not enough for the basics and paying all current debts.

I simply made a choice of what to pay and as I recovered paid what I owed where appropriate.

 

 

It is nice of American Express to do this but to be honest, a lot of companies will work something out with you before they send it off to collections. It is definitely embarrassing to be in a difficult situation in life suddenly where you cannot pay your bills so you ignore the calls and the mail. I have been there personally and it was the wrong decision to make now that I have been working on my credit again and I'm finally with clean reports.

 

It is all about communication with your creditors/utilities/etc when something drastic happens to you. You need to call them immediately and let them know what the situation is. Let them make the choice whether or not to work with you due to the circumstances. At least they will keep a record of you attempting to work something out and not just hanging them out to dry. Sometimes you have to swallow your pride and ask for help. There are many businesses like American Express and friends/family/strangers out there willing to help others if you put forth effort on your part and keep to your word on any promises you make on repayment/payment schedules.

 

I am really happy for you that you got a second chance with them. I just got my first American Express in my life this month and I am very happy with their rewards program and customer service. Just try to contact them next time and work something out. No one wants to pay all them legal fees to sue someone that's willing to make payments on an overdue account/bill until they're caught up. Being in the dumps at certain times in my life has only made me stronger financially and I won't be scared to ask for help next time a bad situation pops up.

 

I would never pay an issuer for the privileged to apply for a mainline card.

Depending on the amount, an instant 20-year tradeline could be attractive for some.

 

I wont get 20, but I will get 10+.

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It is nice of American Express to do this but to be honest, a lot of companies will work something out with you before they send it off to collections. It is definitely embarrassing to be in a difficult situation in life suddenly where you cannot pay your bills so you ignore the calls and the mail. I have been there personally and it was the wrong decision to make now that I have been working on my credit again and I'm finally with clean reports.

 

It is all about communication with your creditors/utilities/etc when something drastic happens to you. You need to call them immediately and let them know what the situation is. Let them make the choice whether or not to work with you due to the circumstances. At least they will keep a record of you attempting to work something out and not just hanging them out to dry. Sometimes you have to swallow your pride and ask for help. There are many businesses like American Express and friends/family/strangers out there willing to help others if you put forth effort on your part and keep to your word on any promises you make on repayment/payment schedules.

 

I am really happy for you that you got a second chance with them. I just got my first American Express in my life this month and I am very happy with their rewards program and customer service. Just try to contact them next time and work something out. No one wants to pay all them legal fees to sue someone that's willing to make payments on an overdue account/bill until they're caught up. Being in the dumps at certain times in my life has only made me stronger financially and I won't be scared to ask for help next time a bad situation pops up.

I haven't heard many that will work with you like this years after the debt has been written off.

What AmEx does is unique in that years after they wrote off the debt they guarantee you a new card if you make them whole. What other card issuer does that?

+1

 

The Optima program is more than just a payment arrangement on old debt.

And depending on the size of the debt, there's also D* to consider. It's not too terribly difficult to leverage the one Optima into two or three accounts adding decades to a credit file. You can go from thin file to thick, fat slob file practically overnight. There can be incredible value in that.

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It is nice of American Express to do this but to be honest, a lot of companies will work something out with you before they send it off to collections. It is definitely embarrassing to be in a difficult situation in life suddenly where you cannot pay your bills so you ignore the calls and the mail. I have been there personally and it was the wrong decision to make now that I have been working on my credit again and I'm finally with clean reports.

 

It is all about communication with your creditors/utilities/etc when something drastic happens to you. You need to call them immediately and let them know what the situation is. Let them make the choice whether or not to work with you due to the circumstances. At least they will keep a record of you attempting to work something out and not just hanging them out to dry. Sometimes you have to swallow your pride and ask for help. There are many businesses like American Express and friends/family/strangers out there willing to help others if you put forth effort on your part and keep to your word on any promises you make on repayment/payment schedules.

 

I am really happy for you that you got a second chance with them. I just got my first American Express in my life this month and I am very happy with their rewards program and customer service. Just try to contact them next time and work something out. No one wants to pay all them legal fees to sue someone that's willing to make payments on an overdue account/bill until they're caught up. Being in the dumps at certain times in my life has only made me stronger financially and I won't be scared to ask for help next time a bad situation pops up.

 

Sage advice Bob, however, I did call everyone.

Some were happy to help and some did not care.

At the end of the day when I put it all the numbers together, there was simply just not enough for the basics and paying all current debts.

I simply made a choice of what to pay and as I recovered paid what I owed where appropriate.

 

 

It is nice of American Express to do this but to be honest, a lot of companies will work something out with you before they send it off to collections. It is definitely embarrassing to be in a difficult situation in life suddenly where you cannot pay your bills so you ignore the calls and the mail. I have been there personally and it was the wrong decision to make now that I have been working on my credit again and I'm finally with clean reports.

 

It is all about communication with your creditors/utilities/etc when something drastic happens to you. You need to call them immediately and let them know what the situation is. Let them make the choice whether or not to work with you due to the circumstances. At least they will keep a record of you attempting to work something out and not just hanging them out to dry. Sometimes you have to swallow your pride and ask for help. There are many businesses like American Express and friends/family/strangers out there willing to help others if you put forth effort on your part and keep to your word on any promises you make on repayment/payment schedules.

 

I am really happy for you that you got a second chance with them. I just got my first American Express in my life this month and I am very happy with their rewards program and customer service. Just try to contact them next time and work something out. No one wants to pay all them legal fees to sue someone that's willing to make payments on an overdue account/bill until they're caught up. Being in the dumps at certain times in my life has only made me stronger financially and I won't be scared to ask for help next time a bad situation pops up.

 

 

I would never pay an issuer for the privileged to apply for a mainline card.

Depending on the amount, an instant 20-year tradeline could be attractive for some.

I wont get 20, but I will get 10+.

And after a year you can leverage that into 10 x 3. ;)

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It is nice of American Express to do this but to be honest, a lot of companies will work something out with you before they send it off to collections. It is definitely embarrassing to be in a difficult situation in life suddenly where you cannot pay your bills so you ignore the calls and the mail. I have been there personally and it was the wrong decision to make now that I have been working on my credit again and I'm finally with clean reports.

 

It is all about communication with your creditors/utilities/etc when something drastic happens to you. You need to call them immediately and let them know what the situation is. Let them make the choice whether or not to work with you due to the circumstances. At least they will keep a record of you attempting to work something out and not just hanging them out to dry. Sometimes you have to swallow your pride and ask for help. There are many businesses like American Express and friends/family/strangers out there willing to help others if you put forth effort on your part and keep to your word on any promises you make on repayment/payment schedules.

 

I am really happy for you that you got a second chance with them. I just got my first American Express in my life this month and I am very happy with their rewards program and customer service. Just try to contact them next time and work something out. No one wants to pay all them legal fees to sue someone that's willing to make payments on an overdue account/bill until they're caught up. Being in the dumps at certain times in my life has only made me stronger financially and I won't be scared to ask for help next time a bad situation pops up.

I haven't heard many that will work with you like this years after the debt has been written off.

 

What AmEx does is unique in that years after they wrote off the debt they guarantee you a new card if you make them whole. What other card issuer does that?

+1

 

The Optima program is more than just a payment arrangement on old debt.

 

 

it does not ensure approval of mainline amex cards.

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It is nice of American Express to do this but to be honest, a lot of companies will work something out with you before they send it off to collections. It is definitely embarrassing to be in a difficult situation in life suddenly where you cannot pay your bills so you ignore the calls and the mail. I have been there personally and it was the wrong decision to make now that I have been working on my credit again and I'm finally with clean reports.

 

It is all about communication with your creditors/utilities/etc when something drastic happens to you. You need to call them immediately and let them know what the situation is. Let them make the choice whether or not to work with you due to the circumstances. At least they will keep a record of you attempting to work something out and not just hanging them out to dry. Sometimes you have to swallow your pride and ask for help. There are many businesses like American Express and friends/family/strangers out there willing to help others if you put forth effort on your part and keep to your word on any promises you make on repayment/payment schedules.

 

I am really happy for you that you got a second chance with them. I just got my first American Express in my life this month and I am very happy with their rewards program and customer service. Just try to contact them next time and work something out. No one wants to pay all them legal fees to sue someone that's willing to make payments on an overdue account/bill until they're caught up. Being in the dumps at certain times in my life has only made me stronger financially and I won't be scared to ask for help next time a bad situation pops up.

I haven't heard many that will work with you like this years after the debt has been written off.

 

What AmEx does is unique in that years after they wrote off the debt they guarantee you a new card if you make them whole. What other card issuer does that?

+1

 

The Optima program is more than just a payment arrangement on old debt.

it does not ensure approval of mainline amex cards.

Did someone say it did?

 

On the other hand, it pretty much ensures 100% disapproval if you don't.

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I got back in without paying and if amex took it all away tomorrow I would not pay them a penny.

Of course. But you have to consider how long it took you to get back in, how much you owed tthem, what your credit profile was like right now and what benefit you'd derive from D*.

 

If I knew I faced a 10+ year wait on their blacklist, currently had a thin file, only owed them, say, $1,000 and could get D* worth 10 years, I'd sell my sister to pay AmEx.

 

Hell, come to think of it, I'd sell my sister for a McDonald's Happy Meal.

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I got back in without paying and if amex took it all away tomorrow I would not pay them a penny.

Of course. But you have to consider how long it took you to get back in, how much you owed tthem, what your credit profile was like right now and what benefit you'd derive from D*.

 

If I knew I faced a 10+ year wait on their blacklist, currently had a thin file, only owed them, say, $1,000 and could get D* worth 10 years, I'd sell my sister to pay AmEx.

 

Hell, come to think of it, I'd sell my sister for a McDonald's Happy Meal.

I have two sisters to pick from.. wanna buy one just in case you gotta sell one to amex?
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