Credit Card Issuer Annual Fee Rules
We get a lot of questions and a lot of interest in annual fees and the rules relating to them. This post features the annual fee refund rules and timelines for the major credit card issuers. You’ll notice there are two different dates mentioned in several of the rules and the distinction is important: posting date compared to statement date. (I’ve elaborated on the distinction in the conclusion.) Also, there are two types of refunds mentioned, a prorated refund and complete refund. Prorated is simply an amount based on the number of months remaining.
In addition to this resource, we have a number of other quick reference guides available:
- Credit Card Reconsideration Strategies When Calling In Fails
- Multi-Bank Guide Reconsideration Phone Numbers
- Resource: Hotel Point Expiration Policies By Loyalty Program
Annual Fee Rules by Issuer
You must close or downgrade your card within 30 days of the statement closing date in order to receive a full refund of the annual fee. Thereafter, the only way to receive any type of refund is to downgrade and receive a prorated refund.
Bank Of America
It doesn’t appear they have any sort of fast and true policy in place. It will depend on your banking history with them. If you have been a good customer and don’t have a late payment history etc. they will generally reimburse you for around 30-45 days after it posts. So you usually will have one statement period.
You will receive a full refund of your annual fee if you cancel within 60 days of the date the fee is charged to your account.
According to Doc, you have 30 days to cancel to receive a refund.
In order to receive any type of refund you must cancel the card within 30 days of the statement date in which the annual fee posted. If you downgrade the card at any time within the cardmember year, you will receive a prorated refund.
In order to receive any type of refund you must cancel the card within 60 days of the annual fee posting.
You will receive a full refund of your annual fee if you cancel within 30 days of the date the fee is charged to your account.
If your account is closed within 90 days of the annual fee being charged, the annual fee will be refunded.
As you can see from the policies above, it’s important not to wait too long before you cancel your account once your annual fee has been charged. Many issuers are willing to offer retention offers in exchange for you keeping the card open, so it’s always worth a shot to call first.
Posting date is the day the annual fee is charged to your account and the statement date refers to the date of the statement reflecting the period in which the annual fee was charged to the account. For example, if your statement dated January 19th is for your account activity from December 16-January 16 and your annual fee is charged on January 15th, the posting date January 15th, but the statement date would be January 19th.
Responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.
In my experience both times when cancelling a US Bank card after the AF posted I had to ask for a supervisor because the front line reps tried to tell me they couldn’t waive it. In the most recent case I called the day after it posted and was told they couldn’t. Called bs (didn’t say that) and asked for a supervisor. The front line rep comes back to the phone and tells me they can refund it since I’m cancelling. Long story short, it’s not been the smoothest experience with US Bank.
I recently cancelled Citi Prestige about 6 months in and I got a $225 prorate. Not sure if that works with all Citi cards or it’s limited to some.
I wonder if it had something to do with them Pulling new apps for a period… I guess we’ll find out 🙂
It’s interesting that you don’t show BofA. Maybe because they don’t seem to have a policy. I tried to cancel my Premium Rewards just days after AF posted (shortly after I used up the 2019 travel credi), but they said I would not get AF refunded, so I was basically forced to keep it open. I probably could have pushed it and escalated, but I figured better to stay in their good graces and hopefully get a few more Alaska SUBs.
Bank of America sucks, they closed my credit account because my credit score tanked after thanksgiving, and that was only a month after they charged me a new round of annual fee. I get it that if I voluntarily closes my account I risk paying the annual fee after a certain amount of time using it, but if BOA decided to close it without my consent, they should at least refund the annual fee or at least prorate it, but I guess BOA needs my $95 to stay out of bankruptcy. Heck, they can even make a business out of making people pay annual fee and reject service with any reason they make up and keep that annual fee. Guess what, my credit score is 810 now, had you waited for 2 months.