My question involves collection proceedings in the State of: CA
Here's my story;
I added my g/f as an authorized user on my AMEX credit card. We broke up in Dec. 2008, so I took away her card but forgot to take her off my account. Anyway, on Oct. 1st I receive an e-mail about some unusual activity on my account. Immediately called AMEX, but the lady on the phone tells me there has been a mistake, there's no activity on my card, and apologizes for the inconvenience. 3 weeks later I log on to my account only to find out I have close to $4K of charges on my account and every single charge was made with my ex g/f's card. Later I find out she had called AMEX and reported her card lost, and had them send her a replacement to her new address. I reported her to the fraud dep., but got a response that they dropped the case since she is an authorized user and she admitted to using the card.
Anyway, I'm a little lost now. Should I concentrate on the fact that AMEX screwed up by telling me there wasn't any activity on my card(although gonna be hard to prove)? Or the fact that they sent her a replacement card to a different address without my knowledge/authorization?
Or, should I just let it go and take her to small claims(which I don't want to do)?
I really want AMEX to take some of the responsibility, and go after her for the charges. I mean, maxing out the card within 3 weeks should have gave them a red flag that the card is being used fraudulently.
Furthermore, I've been looking at terms for my card and the whole authorized user vs additional card member got me a bit confused:
First there's this:
"Additional Cardmembers do not have accounts with us. Instead, they are authorized users on your Account, and the Cards issued to them may be cancelled by you or us at any time. You must notify us to revoke an Additional Cardmember's permission to use your Account. You are responsible under this Agreement for all use of your Account. You are responsible under this Agreement for all use of your Account by the Additional Cardmembers, and by anyone else you or an Additional Cardmember lets use the Card, and the Charges they incur will be billed to you. You have this responsibility even if you did not intend for an Additional Cardmember, or other person, to use the Card for any transactions."
Summarized, basically means I'm liable for all charges.
But then there's this:
"An Additional Cardmember is not liable for Charges incurred by the Basic Cardmember or by other Additional Cardmembers. However, by each use of the Additional Card to incur Charges, the Additional Cardmember indicates his or her agreement to pay us for the Charge if you fail to, or refuse to pay it, and we may, at our discretion, pursue Additional Cardmembers for payment of Charges they incur or authorize. You authorize us to provide Account Information to Additional Cardmembers and to discuss the Account with them. "
I actually called AMEX and quoted them the second bold highlight, but the phone-lady was trying to confuse me and said this means my ex. is liable to pay ME, not them(which made no sense). Then I re-read the quote for her and emphasized on "us", as in AMEX. After that she was speechless, and said she doesn't know how to go about this and gave me a number to their legal help dept.
Sorry for such a long post and so many questions, I just want to know what's my best course of action to get this resolved ASAP, hopefully without courts.
Thanks in advance,
P.S. ...also, as a bonus, I'd like my ex to get arrested...if possible.