Should I End My Authorized User Status With My Parents’ Credit Card Now That I’ve Established Credit?

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It’s great when a parent or family member adds you as an authorized credit card user to help you establish a credit history.

It can set you up to get your own credit cards and put you on a path to a great credit score.

However, people rarely discuss what happens when you’re ready to dissolve that type of arrangement. How do you end your status as an authorized user? And will you hurt your credit score if you take yourself off a parent’s credit card? What are the risks?

That’s what a listener of the Clark Howard Podcast recently asked.

Should I End My Status as an Authorized User on My Dad’s Credit Card?

Should I remove myself as an authorized user on my dad’s credit card after almost 15 years?

That’s what a listener asked on the Aug. 24 podcast.

Asked Amy in Wisconsin: “My dad added me as an authorized user to his credit card when I was 21. I’m now 35 and have a credit score of 805, partially because I’m still listed as an authorized user on my dad’s credit card and that card is my longest history of credit.

“Is there a reason that he would need to end my authorized user status at some point now that I have my own credit history? If so, what’s the best way to end my authorized user status to avoid having it impact my credit significantly?”

You face more risk as an authorized user in this situation. Especially if your dad never gave you a physical credit card to use and was only lending you his good credit. How much risk depends on how trustworthy your dad is with money.

“If your dad ever started having trouble with credit, that would reflect on you. You’re not responsible for the credit, but it would reflect on your credit standing just as it helped you build credit,” Clark says.

“The risk to him is nothing if he’s not giving you the plastic. The risk to you is only in the event that his credit goes bad at some point. So there may or may not be a priority for removing this.”

Will Coming Off a Parent’s Credit Card Account Wreck Your Credit?

Ending her status as an authorized user on her father’s credit card won’t tank Amy’s score. It should remain a part of her credit history for years to come.

It just won’t continue to age. So her average account age may take the slightest of hits over time, depending on how many other lines of credit she’s established that remain open.

“Almost 15 years later, you probably have enough variety of credit and all that,” Clark says. “The long-term credit history from that stays with you. It doesn’t age anymore, but it still stays there.


“And so as long as you’ve got a variety of credit cards and various types of credit, it’s fine for the authorized user status to end.”

How To End Your Status as an Authorized Credit Card User

Ending your relationship as an authorized user on someone else’s credit card should be relatively simple.

You, or the credit card’s principal owner, can notify the credit card company. Call their customer support telephone number and tell them you no longer wish to be an authorized user.

“With most issuers, either of you can do that,” Clark says.

“But as long as you over these nearly 15 years have established your own solid credit of various types, it’s fine for you to be removed. And it’s great that he did this for you because it gave you such a head start.”

Final Thoughts

Once you have what you need out of an authorized credit card user situation, it’s OK to terminate that status. Your credit history with that card will remain on your credit report.

The only downside of remaining as an authorized user? It could hurt your credit history if that person’s credit starts to tank or if they run up charges they can’t pay off.

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