Posted by Chuck on August 26, 2014
Credit Card Review

Published on August 26th, 2014 | by Chuck


Credit Card Benefits: Purchase Protection Review for Theft, Damage, or Loss


Suppose you  just bought a new laptop and it gets stolen or you bought a new tie and it gets splattered with spaghetti sauce. Many credit cards offer a benefit called Purchase Protection to reimburse the loss. The benefit covers damage and theft which occur within the first few months after the purchase, typically with a maximum benefit of $1,000. This insurance is automatically built-in and doesn’t need any special signup. The details of this Purchase Protection vary by the card issuer.

While most cards only cover damage and theft claims, Chase cards also have Loss Protection as well in the event you lose the item. Amex Platinum, Delta Reserve, PRG, and Gold offer this as well.

Coverage Details

  • Amex: max $1,000 per claim, $50,000 per year; coverage is for theft of damage that occur within 90 days.
    • File claims here or call 1-800-322-1277. File a claim within 30 days.
  • Chase: max $1,000 per claim, $50,000 per year; coverage is for theft of damage that occur within 120 days.
    • To file a claim, go to this link to file a claim. Or call 1-888-320-9961 to file a claim with a human. File a claim within 90 days.
  • Citi: max $1,000 per claim, $50,000 per year; coverage is for theft of damage that occur within 120 days (90 days for residents of New York state).
  • Discover no longer offers any purchase protection benefit starting February 28, 2018.

Premium Card Benefits

Most cards have a maximum Purchase Protection benefit of $1,000 per claim and $50,000 per year. However, a few premium cards offer a higher limit of $10,000 per claim. This includes the Chase Sapphire Reserve, Citi Prestige, Amex Platinum cards, Delta Reserve, Premier Rewards Gold, Gold Card, Ameriprise Gold and Fidelity Gold.


Some possible Purchase Protection exclusions:

  • animals and live plants
  • cash equivalents, rare coins or stamps
  • tickets
  • consumables like food and medicine
  • motor vehicles
  • medical equipment
  • products purchased for resale
  • damage caused by war or natural disaster
  • items which weren’t reasonably safeguarded
  • services purchased

Other Details

  • Used items are not covered; manufacturer-refurbished items will probably be covered
  • Split-tender payment would typically be covered, but only up to the amount charged on the card
  • Purchase Protection is typically secondary, not primary, the claim needs to first be submitted to any other insurances; Citi offers Primary coverage everywhere besides New York state
  • Shipping & handling costs are not reimbursed
  • Sales tax is reimbursed
  • You might need documentation for the claim; for example, you can get a police report in the event of theft or a fire report for damage caused by fire

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[…] on your regular credit card in order to get credit card protections, such as extended warranty, purchase protection, return protection, etc. Certain protections won’t apply when the purchase was not paid […]


[…] I think Purchase Protection is a great benefit which isn’t well-known. Many credit cards offer purchase protection for an item which is damaged or stolen within 90 days. This benefit is great for electronics and also very useful for clothing, e.g. if a shirt gets caught in the door and rips, etc. Amex is especially easy to deal with and usually credits your account within 48 hours on smaller claims. I wrote more on this benefit here. […]


I love purchase protection! Chase has helped me out by covering a MacBook Pro fix as well as a broken charger and AMEX covered me on a slightly expensive jacket I lost at the airport.


[…] Credit Card Purchase Protection Explained […]


United explorer card and Citi advantage card aslo have 10,000 purchase protection

Alys Holden
Alys Holden

Do the things you purchase have to be 100% brand new? I thought I remembered reading somewhere that the item can’t be refurbished or second-hand. Or maybe it varies by credit card?

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