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I interviewed Andy from Military Money Manual and he mentioned that American Express waives his credit card fees under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act. However, American Express isn’t required to do this.
Servicemembers Civil Relief Act
The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) is a federal law designed to financially protect active duty military. Some ways this laws helps is by capping credit card interest rates at 6 percent and the ability to end a housing lease in the event of transfers.
American Express Goes Above and Beyond
However, American Express (and a few other banks) have decided to go above and beyond the requirements of the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act. American Express not only limits interest rates on credit cards at 6 percent for active duty military members, they also waive annual fees on credit cards!
In addition to waiving annual fees they also remove:
- Overlimit fees
- Late payment fees
- Returned payment fees
- Statement copy request fees
How to Get Your Fees Waived
You can get your fees waived by calling the number on the back of your American Express card or one of the following numbers:
and telling them you are an active duty military member and heard that AMEX offers annual fees waivers under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act.
You may be asked several questions regarding your active duty service. AMEX will also verify the information with the Department of Defense. It could take a few months before your annual fees are waived. I’d recommend you start the process several months before your annual fees are due.
Who Else Waives Fees?
Via The Military Frequent Flyer, American Express isn’t the only bank that waives credit card annual fees for active duty military members.
You can also get your credit card annual fees waived by:
Making the Most of the Fee Waiver
Having your annual fees waived on all your American Express cards is a great deal!
There are 3 cards with outstanding benefits (terms & limitations apply) that have annual fees for folks NOT in active military service:
- The Platinum Card® from American Express
- American Express Delta Reserve
- Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express
You get free airport lounge access and a $200 annual statement credit from the airline of your choice from the Platinum American Express.
You get 10,000 elite qualifying miles from your 1st purchase and can earn up to 30,000 additional elite qualifying miles from spending with the American Express Delta Reserve card. Delta points can be hard to redeem for low level availability but they can come in handy, especially if you want to send your wife to the Dominican Republic for her birthday!
If you’re an active duty military member (or know someone who is!) you can get your credit card annual fees waived by American Express, Bank of America, Capital One, Chase, and Citibank. And thanks for your service!
Via Cardhub, Capital One will also waive annual fees for Reservists and National Guard members. And according to the Department of Justice, Reservists and National Guard (active duty) members qualify for a waiver of credit card annual fees.