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Most card issuers require you to provide your Social Security number when applying for a business credit card. Corporate cards are the exception. You can typically get these cards using just your business's employer identification number, or EIN.
Learn more about who qualifies for these cards and how to get a business card with only an EIN.
EIN-only business credit cards
Corporate cards are among the only business credit cards available with an EIN only. These cards are only available to incorporated businesses and often have lofty revenue and cash-on-hand requirements.
You can apply for the following corporate cards with just an EIN:
Best for: EIN-only card for smaller businesses
Ramp earns unlimited
1.5% cash back on all purchases and includes perks like spending controls, forecasting tools and automatic receipt matching. You must have at least $75,000 in a business bank account to qualify, and you must link that account to your Ramp Card when you apply. Read full review.
Best for: Startup business card with an EIN only
Brex is geared toward professionally funded startups and requires a bank balance of $50,000 to qualify ($1 million if you're self-funded). This card carries a decent welcome bonus and the opportunity for big rewards:
Earn points on every dollar spent with industry-leading multipliers: 7x on rideshare, 4x on Brex Travel, 3x on restaurants, 2x on software subscriptions and 1x on all other transactions. Earn 3x Brex Rewards points on all eligible Apple purchases through the link or your Brex dashboard. Read full review.
BILL Divvy Corporate Card
Best for: No hard credit check (but SSN required)
BILL Divvy Corporate Card, formerly known as just Divvy, does require applicants to provide their Social Security number along with the business’s EIN. But unlike most traditional business credit cards, the
BILL Divvy Corporate Card only does a soft credit inquiry so there is no negative impact to your personal credit when you apply. The card also offers a wide range of credit limits — anywhere from $500 to $5 million — making it an accessible option for smaller companies that don’t have the revenue or balance to qualify for other corporate cards.
Beyond that, The
BILL Divvy Corporate Card includes powerful spend management tools and the potential for lucrative rewards (if you opt for weekly billing):
Earn up to 7x rewards on restaurants and 5x on hotels with weekly billing. Terms apply. Read full review.
Expensify and Stripe also offer corporate cards that can be applied for using only an EIN and may be easier to obtain. While major card issuers, including American Express, Capital One and JP Morgan Chase, offer corporate cards, these are best suited for large corporations with millions in revenue.
Can I get a secured business credit card with an EIN only?
While secured business credit cards don’t require a good credit score, you still need a taxpayer identification number — either a Social Security number or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number — to apply.
These secured card cards can help you build your business credit score:
First National Bank Business Edition® Secured Mastercard® Credit Card
First National Bank Business Edition® Secured Mastercard® Credit Card reports card activity to Dun & Bradstreet, one of the three main business credit bureaus, so on-time payments will help build your business credit score. This secured card does require a credit check (personal credit) and security deposit (between $2,200 and $110,000 in multiples of $50) which dictates your credit limit. This card charges a $
39 annual fee.
Bank of America® Business Advantage Unlimited Cash Rewards Mastercard® Secured credit card
Bank of America’s Business Advantage Unlimited Cash Rewards Secured credit card earns unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases. You need to put down a security deposit (minimum of $1,000), which is equal to your credit limit. Bank of America will periodically review your secured card and may upgrade you to an unsecured card if and when you qualify. This card has no annual fee.
Why can't you use an EIN to get a business credit card?
Most small-business cards require applicants to personally guarantee the debt on the card. In other words, you are still responsible for paying back any debt, even if your business goes under.
Card issuers use your personal credit score as a basis for approval and will use your Social Security number to check your personal credit even if you also provide an EIN. Many small-business cards require good to excellent personal credit (typically FICO scores of at least 690).
The issuer will typically use your Social Security number to check your personal credit, even if you apply for a business credit card with an EIN.
How to keep business credit separate
Using your business's employer identification number, or EIN, when you apply for a business credit card is a smart play for many reasons. First, your EIN helps draw a clear line between business and personal expenses. It is also essential for establishing business credit history. If you're seeking an EIN-only business credit card in order to protect your personal credit, take heart: Activity on a business credit card typically won't affect your personal credit score unless your account is seriously delinquent. Instead, most credit card issuers report business credit card information to commercial credit bureaus. There are a few exceptions, though.
Discover reports payment activity to both consumer and commercial credit bureaus. The effect can be positive or negative: If you make your payments on time and have a low credit utilization ratio (ideally less than 30%), then the account could improve your personal credit score. But if you miss payments and accrue substantial debt, it could drag down your score.
Regardless of whether your small-business card reports to the credit bureaus, the personal guarantee still applies: If your company goes out of business, you will be responsible for paying off the card.