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Class Claims AmEx Suckered Them

SAN FRANCISCO (CN) - American Express lured thousands of people into accepting offers for a "Blue Cash Card" on false promises that they could earn cash rewards on purchases, according to a federal class action. But "not only did American Express fail to tell its customers the truth when the offer was made, they also failed to properly inform those same customers that there were additional restrictions to the Blue Cash program before or even after they were made," the complaint states.

The cardholders say American Express' offers were full of misrepresentations, among them, that frequent spending would earn them even more rewards.

Lead plaintiff Mindy Pagsolingan says she accepted an offer for the card in 2004 on American Express' representation that she would receive a reward of "up to 5 percent" cash back on her purchases, including a 2 percent cash bonus for her "everyday purchases."

Pagsolingan says American Express misrepresented the cash rebates, and used a deceptive "tiered" system based on the clause "up to," to avoid paying her the full amount.

The class demands damages for false advertising and violation of the Consumer Legal Remedies Act. They are represented by Patrice Bishop with Stull, Stull and Brody of Los Angeles.

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