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Building Credit, Consumer Watchdog, Credit Cards

How to Get Removed as an Authorized User on a Credit Card

Authorized User on a Credit Card

Becoming an authorized, or secondary user, on another person’s credit card can be a good way to build or rebuild credit. The account’s information is often added to your credit file, which can help establish a credit history. The increased credit available to you may decrease your overall utilization rate, which can also boost your credit score.

However, being an authorized user can have a negative effect as well. If the primary cardholder doesn’t pay a bill on time, or owes a lot on an account, your credit could be hurt as a result. Even when that’s not the situation, authorized users may want to get taken off an account if their relationship with the primary cardholder changes.

Requesting The Removal

To request your removal as an authorized user on a credit card account, you’ll usually need to call the card issuers. Only Bank of America and Barclays allows authorized cardholders to request a removal online.

You’ll need to verify the account’s information, which often involves answering a security question or knowing personal information about the primary cardholder. Once you do so, almost all the card issuers allow authorized cardholders to remove themselves from an account. Only at Citi might a secondary cardholder not have the clearance to request the removal.

In general, you can’t make other changes to an account or request the removal of other authorized cardholders.

Card Issuers’ Contact Information

If you’re a secondary cardholder at one of the following financial intuitions, you can call the number listed below to request your removal from an account. Expect to answer several identification and verification questions, although the specific questions vary by issuer.

American Express: Authorized users can remove themselves from an account by calling the customer service line at 1-800-528-2122. You need to provide your name, card number, and answer a security question or have the account’s security pin. 

Bank of America: Authorized users can remove themselves from an account online or by calling the customer service line at 1-800-732-9194. You will need to answer security questions that were created by the primary account holder, such as the city they were born in, their first car, or their mother’s maiden name.

Barclays: Authorized users can remove themselves from an account online or by calling the customer service line at 1-888-232-0780. You will need to provide the account number and two of the following: the primary cardholder’s date of birth, Social Security number, mother’s maiden name, or home phone number.

Capital One: Authorized users can remove themselves from an account by calling the customer service line at 1-800-227-4825. You need to provide the card’s number and the primary cardholder’s name and date of birth. 

Chase: Authorized users can remove themselves from an account by calling the customer service line at 1-800-432-3117. You need the card number and primary account holder’s mother’s maiden name, or the account’s password. 

Citi: Authorized users can remove themselves from an account by calling the customer service line at 1-800-347-4934. You need to provide your name, the primary cardholder’s name, and the security word of the account. With Citi accounts, you may not have the clearance to make changes to the account even if you’re an authorized card user. If this is the case, the primary cardholder will need to request your removal. 

Discover: Authorized users can remove themselves from an account by calling the customer service line at 1-800-347-2683. You need the account number and zip code of where the bill is mailed, or the primary cardholder’s Social Security number.

Kohl’s: Authorized users can remove themselves from an account by calling the customer service line at 1-855-564-5748. You will need to verify the account by providing your card number, name, and date of birth.

Follow-Up with the Credit Bureaus and Card Issuers

Getting yourself taken off an account may only be the first step depending on your end goal. If you’re requesting a removal because the primary cardholder’s activity has hurt your credit, or you want the line of credit off your credit file for another reason, you may need to call the credit bureaus or follow-up with the card issuer.

After getting removed from the account, new activity shouldn’t be added to your credit file. Depending on the issuer and bureau, the entire credit line might automatically be taken off your credit report or the credit line remains with a marker that your relationship with the account was terminated. If the account remains, previous positive and negative marks will remain on your credit file and may affect your score.

Even when the process is automatic, it may take 30 to 60 days for your authorized user account to get taken off your credit report. Wait a month or two and then request a free copy of each of your three credit reports from AnnualCreditReport.com. If the credit line is still there, you can then follow-up with the credit bureau and file a dispute asking them to take the account off your file.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

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Pay Down My Debt, Strategies to Save

Real Stories of an Emergency Fund Saving the Day

Real Stories of an Emergency Fund Saving the Day

It’s common personal finance advice to build an emergency fund – an easy-to-access account with enough money to cover your expenses for three to six months. How to get started and where to keep the money might be up for debate. Some people may even go back and forth about what qualifies as an emergency. But, as the stories below demonstrate, the value of having an emergency fund is certain.

Hold Out and Get What You’re Owed

A user on Reddit shared an experience when an emergency fund led to a substantial financial gain. His wife lost her job, and the company owed her an undisclosed but large sum of money. The company offered her a payment worth 20 percent of the amount owed, but because the couple had a six-month emergency fund ready, they didn’t feel rushed to accept. Instead, they hired a lawyer, sued the company, and eventually got the full amount owed to them.

The wife also found a new, better job within two months and they only had to use about 20 percent of their emergency fund during the transition.

A commenter on this thread points out that similar situations can happen after auto accidents. The commenter says their ex was a claims adjuster and would push to close a case as quickly as possible. Once there’s a settlement the case won’t be reopened, even if you discover a new injury. Those that need the settlement money right away might agree to the rushed closing while those with an emergency fund can wait a little while to see if they discover new bodily pains or damage to their vehicle.

[Creating an Emergency Fund While Saddled with Debt]

A Car Accident

A car can be an essential part of life, especially if you need one to get to work or school. Melanie Lockert, Founder of Dear Debt, says, “When I was living in LA and got in a car accident, I had an unexpected $1,800 repair bill. My emergency fund turned my expense into an annoyance rather than a crisis.”

Keeping accidents from becoming financial crises is one of the largest benefits of having an emergency fund.

Untimely Travel

Some emergency situations are more serious than others. A damaged car or a lost job can set you back, but the death of a loved one can be an emotional and financial blow. Jessica Garbarino, Founder of personal finance website Every Single Dollar, only had a small emergency fund while she was paying down debts. On New Year’s Eve, she got a call that her grandfather wasn’t doing well. Although the savings account wasn’t much money, her fund could cover the cost of a last-minute plane ticket from Florida to Minnesota, and she was able to spend a few precious days with her grandfather before he passed away.

[Should You Invest Your Short-Term Savings]

A Little Bit of Everything

Another Redditor dealt with several emergencies back to back. Over a five-month period, he had a kidney stone removed, which set him back about $5,000, and was hit by a car, adding another estimated $1,200 to $1,500 to his tab. His car got backed into, a rock hit his windshield, he needed new brake pads, and he did some other general service to his car. In total, he’s estimating the cost came out to be around $10,000 including the lost wages from taking time off work. But, his emergency fund was beyond six months of expenses and he optimistically writes, “Having the cash on hand? Priceless.”

How to save while paying down debts

Unfortunately, emergencies do happen. But, as the four scenarios above exemplify, one of the most powerful things an emergency fund can give you are options. You can choose to travel at a moment’s notice, hold out for a fair and full settlement, or repair a vehicle right away – and get to do so without going into debt.

But, what if you’re in the process of paying down debt? How do you decide when it makes sense to put money towards your debt rather than contribute to an emergency fund?

One option is to start small and aim for building a $500 to $1,000 fund while making debt payments. You may only be able to put aside a little money each month, but those savings do add up and a small cash reserve can be enough to get you out of some sticky situations. You can also use a year-end bonus, tax refund, gift, or other influx of money to jump-start an emergency fund.

Grayson Bell, Founder of Debt Roundup, shares his method for paying off debt while building savings. He started by putting 95 percent of his disposable income to debt payments and 5 percent towards savings. After some time, he adjusted his allocation and put 80 percent towards debt and 20 percent towards savings. He suggests creating your own milestones that trigger change.

Some people will forgo an emergency fund, or saving of any kind, while paying off debt in the hope of getting back in the black quickly. For Grayson, one important reason to start saving was to change his mindset around money. Beginning to regularly save, rather than spend money on himself or his debts, was an important part of getting his finances in order.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

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