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Can an Authorized Signer Affect Credit Rating?

Ask Savvy: Can an Authorized Signer Affect My Credit Rating?

Dear Savvy,

Does applying for a supplementary credit card on someone's account affect either person's credit rating?

Savvy says: There are a couple of reasons why you want to grant another person access to your card, but the effect is the same no matter the reasoning behind it. Perhaps you want to add your partner to your account for the sake of convenience, or maybe you are trying to arrange a piggybacking situation. Piggybacking most often occurs when someone with excellent credit adds someone with poor or no credit as an authorized user on a credit card.

To see how adding another person to a credit card affects the credit of both individuals,


If you're the one being added to the card, be sure you're aware of the credit history associated with the particular credit card. Generally, the history of that card will be added to your personal credit report, which can be a good or bad thing depending on how the account holder has handled the card. It may not be in your best interest to be added to your spouse's card if he hasn't been great at paying on time.

While an authorized signer takes on the history of the established credit card, there's no affect on the account holder by simply adding another signer. However, the account holder is ultimately responsible for any charges made by the authorized party, and her credit can be greatly affected if this person acts irresponsibly.


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Sunshine-Makes-Me-Happy Sunshine-Makes-Me-Happy 6 years
Will it raise the credit of the person doing the piggy backing?
aimeeb aimeeb 7 years
Good to know.
ilanac13 ilanac13 7 years
since i was in high school i've been an authorized user on one of my mom's cards and i have to think that it's done a ton of good for me since i didn't really have credit - and because it has a HIGH limit and we hardly ever have a balance on the card. the other thing is that my fiance had CRAPPY credit and i've added him to my american express which is paid off every month. this is one of those things that i can only hope helps him since we do spend a decent amount on it (i.e we're paying for our wedding and medical stuff on it)...and we aren't ever late on the payment.
Modus-Vivendi Modus-Vivendi 7 years
I didn't know what piggy backing was! I wasn't sure how that works. Good to know, since my parents put me on their credit card (and have excellent credit).
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