Posted by William Charles on April 5, 2017
Credit Cards

Published on April 5th, 2017 | by William Charles

61

Bank of America “Approved In Error” Issues

Introduction

Before we get started, note that this page is a work in progress and I’m hoping readers will contribute their data points. Recently readers and people across the web have reported that Bank of America have either denied or approved their Merrill+ cards, that’s obviously nothing new but what is new is that some people who received approvals have been contacted and told their application was “approved in error”. Reader Darv was the first to mention this and Sirtheta put together a warning post found here.

The Rule

Shortly after this reddit user Kilifi posted the following “rule”:

Merrill+ cards will be denied (or approved and then denied) if:

  • You’ve had 4 or more Bank of America applications in the last 12 months
  • You’ve had 5 or more Bank of America applications in the last 24 months
  • Currently hold more than 8 existing Bank of America cards

I’m going to call this the approved in error (AiE rule). Seems to be affecting more cards than just Merrill+.

The Data Points

As everybody knows, it’s never a good idea to take everything at face value on the internet so let’s see if the data points back up this rule or not (please remember to share yours in the comments).

Confirms rule:

These data points show denials or approved in error for people in accordance with what the rule states.

Slightly confirms rule:

These data points show approvals for people that should be approved according to the rule.

Goes against rule:

These data points show people that were approved when they should have been denied according to the rule.

Other data points:

Our Verdict

Honestly I’m not 100% sure what’s going on here, I have a few random thoughts:

  • Approved in error seems to be more likely to happen when the Merrill+ application was done on the same day as other applications
  • Bank of America might not have finished processing all of the “approved in error” cancellations, thus causing some false negatives or similar.

As always, I know my readers will come through with some data points to help us work out what’s going. Please try to provide as much information as possible if you were “approved in error” at minimum the following would be great:

  • Bank of America cards in the last 12 months
  • Bank of America cards in the last 24 months
  • Current Bank of America cards
  • Did you apply for multiple cards at once?
  • Did you received the approved in error notification? If so, when?
  • When did you apply?

I’ll add to the above if I think of any other useful questions.

 

 



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Applied for 4 mlbs in September and merill+ in Jan. All eventually approved and not removed.

You’ve had 4 or more Bank of America applications in the last 12 months

Does this count in the application for the merrill+ and other apps done in the same day of Merrill+?

I was snap denied for a new alaska yesterday. I wonder if this 4/12 5/24 rule is more widespread?

I applied for M+ and AS card on same day in that order. I later had the AS card revoked but not the M+. I wonder if it’s not a M+ specific issue, rather just that most people would choose the M+ over AS as a better card so most DPs are related to it.

Same thing happened to me yesterday 🙁

Hi Kels – This is still happening. Do you recall how long after you applied that the card was cancelled?

( I’m putting together data points to help others for for how long they need to wait after applying to put use the card and be safe that they’ll keep their points. https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1NatO_IITSOlGvuecebKMdWUdotKsUPp6sy3cNIP8_V0/ )

Hi David – This is still happening. Do you recall how long after you applied that the card was cancelled?

( I’m putting together data points to help others for for how long they need to wait after applying to put use the card and be safe that they’ll keep their points. https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1NatO_IITSOlGvuecebKMdWUdotKsUPp6sy3cNIP8_V0/ )

I can’t recall exactly, but I would guess it was about 1 week. Not longer than 2.

Thanks! I incorporated it into the data points tracker.

Applied 03/29, Approved. No prior BoA relationship

Approved in early March along with AS personal card. First statement closed and card is still open.

Thanks for keeping track of this- hopefully Kilifi would be kind enough to take a look and let us know if we’re missing anything here.

Bank of America cards in the last 12 months – 0
Bank of America cards in the last 24 months – 0
Current Bank of America cards – 1
Did you apply for multiple cards at once? – Yes, Merrill+ & Alaska
Did you received the approved in error notification? If so, when? – No
When did you apply? – 3/30/17

Applied for AS and M+ same day last week. 0/24 for BOA applications, had an Americard for about 4 years. Immediately denied for AS, waiting a week and called recon today. Was told that I had too many CC openings in general, not just with BOA, as he stated that the 5 opened in the past 10 months were too many for their M+ approvals. Thanked him for his time and hung up. Checked online and application had gone from under review to denied, now matching the AS. I could just be an outlier, but seemed to me that any accounts, not just BOA accounts, were the problem.

Still under review. Should I call them to reconsider? I have a BoA savings & checking and have 2 cards with them right now

@ Ruby
You have a good chance of getting approved due to your prior relationship with them but I think calling them might lead to a denial since the recon reps are in that kind of mood.

Denied.

Had opened 10 MLB cards within the past 12 months, of which 6 were closed right after I received the cards.

Approved for M+ 11/29/16 r and approved again for the M+ on 3/31/17. Only 2 BOA cards I have at the moment. Application on 3/31 went to pending and called recon the following day and was approved. Both cards currently show up on my profile and received email stating my second card was sent out on 4/4.

I was approved in November, had 4 cards before that, 3 open at time of approval, 2 opened within 3 months of Merrill app.
Bank of America cards in the last 12 months: 2
Bank of America cards in the last 24 months: 3
Current Bank of America cards: 3 (including Merrill)
Did you apply for multiple cards at once? Yes, but was not approved for those cards, just Merrill
Did you received the approved in error notification? If so, when? No
When did you apply? November

On April 2, 2017, I applied for Merrill+ over the phone and it went pending. Later that day, I was instantly approved for Alaska, BankAmericard Travel Rewards, & BankAmericard Cash Back. On the morning of April 4, All of the cards were shown in my BofA account with the exception of the Cash Back card presumably revoked since I already own the card (from 2013). I have applied for 0 BofA cards in the last 24 months prior to this Merrill+ application.

Should we expect California residents to be immune to AiE, or at least to get 30 days notice (since California law prohibits issuers from closing credit card accounts without 30 days’ notice, except in certain cases like the customer defaulting on their debt)?

Would be interesting to hear whether anybody in CA has gotten the AiE treatment.

Credit to Reddit user sexy_kitten7 for the legal point: https://www.reddit.com/r/churning/comments/63lyyp/comment/dfvfs0y

I live in CA. I already had 7 BoA cards when I applied for the Merrill +. Got pending so called the reconsideration line. Was told that I had enough credit with BoA so it would be a denial. SO I asked her to move credit around and then she approved it. I even got the card in the mail but when I went to activate it, was told that the account was closed. I then tried to call and argue with them. They told me they made a mistake in approving me as it wasn’t the number of credit but the number of accounts I had with BoA that was the issue.

Dang. Thanks for the DP, Helen!

I don’ think they are following any rule in this specific case.
They are denying this card wherever they can as they probably did not expect such a high volume of applications.

Look at this post : https://www.fatwallet.com/forums/finance/1561786?showmessage=19839533

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