How to Remove an Authorized User From Your Credit Card

Calling the credit card issuer
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An authorized user is a person who has permission to use your credit card account, but not responsibility for making the payments on the account. You may have added a child as an authorized user on your account to allow them to jumpstart their credit or to give them a way to make credit card purchases. But, there comes a time when authorized users have to, or maybe choose to, be removed from the account, especially if their credit card use is hurting your credit score or vice versa.

Process to Remove an Authorized User

Removing an authorized user from a credit card is pretty easy. You can call the credit card issuer using the number on the back of your credit card and request the authorized user be removed from the credit card. If you have multiple authorized users and you’re only removing one, make sure you specify which user you’d like to remove from the account.

Following up your request with a letter can provide you with proof that you made the request. For example, you can write “Per our phone conversation on 8/17/2015, I would like to remove Jane Doe’s authorized user status from my account ending in 1234 effective 08/17/2015.” Just make sure you send your letter to the credit card issuer’s address for correspondence, which you can find on your credit card statement. Send the letter via certified mail if you’d like confirmation that the credit card issuer received the letter.

Let the authorized user know you’re removing them from the account, so they know not to try to use their card. Otherwise, they could be unpleasantly surprised when trying to swipe their card to make a purchase.

Removing Yourself as an Authorized User

If you need to remove yourself as an authorized user, you may be able to get yourself removed by following the same process - making a call to the credit card's customer service. However, you may have to get the primary account holder to make the call. If this isn’t possible and the credit card company won’t remove you without the primary account holder’s permission, you can use the credit report dispute process to have the account removed from your credit report.

Payment Responsibility

Keep in mind that the authorized user doesn’t have any legal responsibility for the charges they made to the account. You’re solely responsible for repaying back any purchases made by the authorized user while they were listed on your account. Your credit card agreement overrides any verbal agreements you had with the authorized user to pay their share of the credit card bill.

What About a Joint Cardholder?

This is not the process for removing a joint cardholder from a credit card account. Joint cardholders apply for the credit card together and both parties’ are equally responsible for the credit card balance, in the credit card issuer’s eyes at least.

If joint cardholders no longer want to share a credit card, then pay off the balance or transfer it to a credit card held by just one of the accountholders, then close the account.