Adding an authorized user who has declared bankruptcy

Dear Experian,

If I add an authorized user who filed bankruptcy to my credit card, will that affect my credit scores?



Dear SDY,

Adding an authorized user to your account would not cause their prior bankruptcy to be added to your credit report. Your credit history and the credit history of the authorized user are completely separate and each includes only the accounts and public records that are in your name.

The account may be added to the authorized user’s report because both of your names are now associated with the debt.

None of the authorized user’s previous account history will be merged with your credit history because you are not associated with or responsible for any of the debt. The same is true of the bankruptcy public record.

And, of course, because the bankruptcy will not appear in your credit history, it will not affect your credit scores.

That said, there is always risk when adding someone as an authorized user to your account. Any charges made by an authorized user are still the responsibility of the primary cardholder. If the authorized user’s charges increase your balances or you were unable to make the payments on time, your credit history would reflect the late payments and your credit scores would suffer. 

Thanks for asking.

- The “Ask Experian” team

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