I’m an Authorized User on a Credit Card and it is Bringing Down My Credit Score. – Dave

“Dear Steve,

When I was 18 and moving into the dorms at college my father put me as an authorized user on a couple of his credit cards. At the time my dad had very good credit and this was done in order to help me build my own credit and use these cards in emergency situations or to buy books, etc…Well now my father has gotten a little in over his head in the current economy and this cards while in good standing are pretty much maxed out with high credit limits.

I don’t have great credit as it is due to some irreponsible decisions in college but now I’m 25 and really getting serious about cleaning it up. However, I recently checked my credit account and found out that these two credit cards are still showing up on my credit report with me as an authorized user.

So my question is, even though I am only an authorized user are these two cards hurting my credit due to them being maxed out? And if so is the only way to get them off my report is by talking to my father about taking me off as an authorized user?


Dear Dave,

Yes, asking your father to call the credit card company is the only way to get those off. Otherwise the next time the credit card company dumps data to the credit bureaus, guess what, back on you will go.

Maybe you could just thank your father for giving you a hand but now you want to build your credit on your own. That way he will be less embarrassed that the reason you want off is because his credit sucks and is dragging you down.

This is the problem with the whole wave of people that were gaming the system to “rent” authorized user status to help bring up their scores. It goes both ways.

See also  Will the Credit Card Company Go After My Sons in College for My Debt? - John

Those two cards are not helping you at this point but I don’t know if anything else might be dragging you down. Best thing to do and most expedient is to order your credit score and see exactly what it is and it will tell you what to do to improve it.


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Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.
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