Posted by Chuck on July 19, 2019
Credit Cards

Published on July 19th, 2019 | by Chuck

101

Chase May Close Your Card Account After 1 Year Inactivity

Chase may close your card after it’s been inactive for a year. I’ve read about this in the past, but never bumped into it myself until now. I have a Freedom card that hasn’t gotten any use for a year as none of the quarterly categories have worked for me recently. Chase sent me a snailmail letter informing me that the account will close when the card expires next month.

The letter was sent in the mail just over a year since the last active statement. The letter states further that my using the card will not avoid the card cancelling, but they suggest I call in to explore possibilities if I want to keep it open.

Calling in was super easy. I just informed the rep that I wanted to keep the card open, and she processed that immediately without any questions or comments.

Sounds to me like if your card is not set to expire soon, this issue won’t arise; that’s probably why I never bumped into it before. Further, I’d guess that any card that has an annual fee will not have this issue. Overall it’s a pretty niche thing, but worth knowing about. You can preemptively avoid this issue by ensuring your card remains active with a small charge on the card, e.g. $1 Amazon gift card or $.50 Amazon reload.

I recall reading about card accounts that were closed with no notice. That may be the case with other issuers, but in Chase’s case they gave me notice with the letter which made it easy enough to deal with.

And, yes, I promptly went to buying $1 Amazon gift cards on various inactive cards. 🙂



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Max B
Max B

Our Amazon card was closed after almost 2 years of no activity. It turns out they mailed a letter saying we had 60 days to use it or they would close the account. I was shown the letter after 67 days and Chase said reapply if you want it again. Exp on the card is 12/22.

SamSimon
SamSimon

amazon card is chase card?

Thomas
Thomas

these are the types of things that you could google very easily

Alex
Alex

Please be nice

MisterBill
MisterBill

Did you lose any points?

Anonn
Anonn

Citi will only let you know after closure, but supposedly you can reopen it within 30 days.

Not sure of the inactivity timeframe.

Rob
Rob

Citi wanted to pull a credit report to consider reopening a card they closed on me. They could not tell me if it would be a soft or hard pull.

HarryTheFirstHarry
HarryTheFirstHarry

Same here. Citi closed my att univ card and wanted to hp to reopen. Dinged my credit a bit as it was one of my oldest cards with highest limit…still let it go for greener pastures….

JohnnyBoyJr
JohnnyBoyJr

Citi closed an old Shell card after just a few months of inactivity back around ’09. No announcement whatsoever. It just gave me another reason to not like ’em and take every advantage I can to get free money out of them.
After that, I’ve transferred 0% APR balances to my oldest Chase cards to ensure it doesn’t ever happen to them. It costs me $5/yr per card, but it’s a good deal to guarantee I don’t slip up and forget to use it.

TomJ
TomJ

Thanks for sharing..Since 2016, I make sure to put at least $10 transaction every year in all my Chase cards even with annual fee ones like $49 IHG. Cant afford to lose them

Brocko
Brocko

I do the same thing with each of my credit cards every January. I usually just reload my Amazon balance.

Mary w
Mary w

Yep. I do in late November before Christmas shopping. Also check expiration dates on airline/hotel points.

Electroman
Electroman

Cards with an annual fee are never inactive for more than a year. After all, the annula fee appearing is activity on the card.

Won
Won

Do you know if it’s considered activity that will allow the card to stay open? Or is it ignored when they consider closing your card?

doc
doc

Depends on the bank. Best to just spend a dollar at a gas pump or on a soda to avoid testing out those utterly unnecessary conclusions.

MisterBill
MisterBill

I’d think they would be happy to keep your fee card open even if you don’t use it.

MisterBill
MisterBill

Why would you keep a card with an annual fee and not use it? I assume there are perks for having it that make it worth the $49?

havai
havai

annual free night, plus plat status…..

Slidellian
Slidellian

And here I was, thinking that they’d close my Freedom if I didn’t use it at least once every three months.

doc
doc

That’s a good regular modus operandi, though. Otherwise, you’ll find the occasional data point of Adverse Action with less use.

Justin
Justin

Years ago, Chase closed my oldest card without notice. I called immediately and they said there was nothing they could do.

doc
doc

C’mon, that’s like rule number one… to give your well seasoned accounts some love every now and again. Plus, it’s the right thing to do. The first bank to lend to you most certainly took a risk on you; so showing some appreciation should come easy.

When you forget what you have been given, you forget yourself.

Dave
Dave

oh brother.

Atrader4
Atrader4

You’re a slacker, I order meat and cheese trays every year for all my banks to show my appreciation.

AKJohnny
AKJohnny

none of the freedom categories didn’t work for you for a year?? like you don’t go to grocery stores or buy gas??? those are the easiest categories to put some spend on…

Jethro Tuller
Jethro Tuller

I’ve noticed that some companies will lower your credit limit if you don’t use it enough for their liking. AmEx did that after just six months of non-use–it happened that Groceries were the category for other cards for 2 quarters in a row. But normally it had gotten a lot of use. Not much use on the Chase Ink because other cards were better, and they lowered that one. 5/3 did the same thing after about 6 months of non-use.

qmc
qmc

I don’t think it’s for non-use, but when they look at your overall credit profile via a soft pull, they may decide they aren’t comfortable with the risk.

Jethro Tuller
Jethro Tuller

I really don’t think that’s the case though. I have about 1% utilization and pay off every month.

Slidellian
Slidellian

I’m not sure about that. I’ve had credit limits increased on cards that I hardly use. I figured it was the bank’s way of making a card more attractive. Btw, love your handle.

Abhirup
Abhirup

My amazon store card, Barclays arrival card, Citi Than you card- all were closed after 2 years inactivity without notice.
BOA however sent me an email giving me a month to use my card before shutting down.

Anonymous166
Anonymous166

Interesting. A rep for the amazon store card told me that accounts were closed after six months.

scott
scott

Chase recently sent me a letter that they were lowering the credit limit on my United card due to inactivity. I hadn’t used it in about 6 months.

P
P

Ah. My amazon card is my oldest card. I should go load an amazon gift card now.

Catapult
Catapult

They closed my Chase Sapphire about 6 months back, but I don’t recall getting any letter in the mail. Only noticed it in my online account.

I had earlier asked them to change it to a Freedom (regular or unlimited), but they refused to do it.

Barb
Barb

That’s strange they wouldn’t downgrade your card. I hear of people doing that constantly

el_pistolero
el_pistolero

i need to use my freedom..shucks

George
George

Read the other DPs in here.

Don
Don

I have a sinking feeling they only do it to cards w/ no annual fees.

Ram

annual fees post once a year, making it impossible to have 1 year + 1 day of inactivity

ryd994
ryd994

Technically, it’s 1yr-1day max inactivity. The annual fee day itself is active. Need to take the day out of each year.

You can never have 1yr exactly of inactivity.

😐

MisterBill
MisterBill

And in theory the payment should count as activity, so actually 11 months + a few days.

JohnnyBoyJr
JohnnyBoyJr

Closer to 10 months, 1 week of inactivity.
If the AF is billed on day 1, $0 is due when the statement closes. Then you have ~21 days to pay it off before incurring any interest.

Steve

Maybe, but they could define inactivity as “not making any purchases”, which wouldn’t include fees. But anyway, they’re probably making money from someone who doesn’t do anything other than pay the annual fee, so no reason to close their card.

peter
peter

I set up monthly recurring payments to one of my favorite charities that accepts credit card and has a monthly billing option for all my cards that I rarely use and want to make sure stay open. With autopay they just sit there and keep from getting closed.

doc
doc

Good idea. What’s the charity and how low does the monthly contribution go?

gman
gman

I want to meet people that have not ordered anything from Amazon in two years. (I assume they have not since using the Amazon card gets 5% cashback)

Jethro Tuller
Jethro Tuller

Maybe they don’t have Prime and use BofA’s 3%?

Celia
Celia

I stock up on Amazon gift cards during 10% sales so I only use my amazon card when there’s a different incentive (5% on utilities a recent example).

Frogger
Frogger

I barely order from Amazon. I really am not a fan. My most recent order was the second time it said fufilled by Amazon and then was actually shipped from overseas and took a month to arrive. I don’t use my Amazon Amex biz as you only get 3 percent back if you aren’t prime. Got a $100 Amazon gift card for Christmas and bought a Nordstrom gift card. Really they are usually more expensive and they don’t really have items I would buy on there,

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