How to Remove an Authorized User From Your Credit Card

You can remove an authorized user by calling customer service, or sometimes through your online account. Here's all the contact info you need.
Jaime Hanson
By Jaime Hanson 
Edited by Kenley Young

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Whether because of a change in relationship, poor spending habits or a dispute over charges, there are many reasons you may need to remove an authorized user from your credit card. But what are the steps to do so, and how will it impact your credit and theirs?

Here's what to know about removing an authorized user from your credit card.

How to remove an authorized user

With all major issuers, you can remove an authorized user by calling the number on the back of your credit card. Certain issuers will let you skip the phone call, instead offering access to remove an authorized user through your online account, mobile app, text chat or a secure message with customer service.

Here's a quick breakdown of how to remove an authorized user through several of the major credit card issuers.

To remove an authorized user from your American Express account, call customer service at 800-528-4800.

You can remove an authorized user from your Barclays credit card through the Barclays app. First, select the card in question, then navigate to the "Account Settings" section of the app and select "Authorized users." You can also call customer service at 866-928-8598.

You can remove authorized users by visiting your Capital One online account or calling Capital One customer service at 800-227-4825.

Remove an authorized user from your Chase credit card by calling customer service at 800-432-3117.

To remove an authorized user from your Citi credit card, contact customer service by phone at 800-950-5114, by chat using your online account or through the Citi mobile app.

You can remove an authorized user from your Discover card through your online account, the Discover mobile app, or by calling Discover customer service at 800-347-2683.

Removing an authorized user from your U.S. Bank credit card requires a call to customer service at 800-285-8585. Since this action can't be performed using the automated phone system, the bank notes that customers should interrupt the automated system and say "representative" to get help with removing an authorized user.

You can remove an authorized user by signing into your Wells Fargo account online and selecting the card in question. From there, click the "Credit Card Service Center" link, find the "Account management column," and then click on the "Add Authorized Users to Your Account" link. You can add or remove authorized users at that link. You can also call 800-642-4720.

What if I'm trying to remove myself as an authorized user?

For the most part, authorized users can't make changes to a credit card account without the approval of the primary cardholder. However, removing yourself as an authorized user is an exception to this rule. So even if you don't have online account access to the card for which you're an authorized user, you can still remove yourself by calling the number on the back of the card.

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Reasons to consider removing an authorized user

  • They have bad spending habits. While an authorized user can spend money through a credit card account, only the primary account holder is responsible for payments. Therefore, if your authorized user is overspending, removing their access to the card is the fastest way to avoid the consequences of their reckless spending.

🤓Nerdy Tip

Concerned about your authorized user's spending habits? Removing their access isn't your only option. Several credit cards will let you set a spending limit for authorized users.

  • They aren't paying you back. If you've previously agreed with your authorized user that they will pay you back for all or a portion of what they charge, they need to follow through on that agreement. Sadly, having a verbal agreement with your authorized user will do little to protect you legally. That's because, as the primary cardholder, you are ultimately responsible for payments on the card. So if you're having trouble getting repayment, your best action in the short term is to remove the authorized user's access to spend on your account.

  • Your relationship has changed. Maybe you were previously dating and have broken up, or you shared expenses as roommates and someone has moved out. Maybe your authorized user was an employee who moved on to another job. Whatever the reason, a significant change in the relationship between the primary account holder and the authorized user could mean you need to remove the individual.

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Why improved credit isn't always a good reason to remove an authorized user

Helping an individual build credit is a common reason for having an authorized user on your credit card. That's because when the primary account holder makes timely payments, it can help build a positive credit history for the authorized user.

So then, once their credit improves, does that mean it's time to remove the authorized user? Not so fast. When you remove an authorized user, that effectively erases the account — and all of the credit history that comes with it — from their credit report. In particular, if this is their oldest credit account, removal could shorten their average age of accounts — a major component of an individual's credit score.

As an alternative, consider asking for the card back and putting it away, with the agreement that it is no longer in use. This way, you'll allow the authorized user to maintain the positive credit history you've helped them build without incurring additional charges.

What to do after removing an authorized user

Once you've removed an authorized user from your credit card, there are a few steps you should take to follow through with the process.

  • Let the individual know. While not strictly necessary, it may be a good idea to let the person know that the card is no longer active. After all, no one enjoys the experience of having a card unexpectedly declined at checkout or being caught off guard by a dip in their credit scores.

  • Settle the final statement. If the authorized user owes you money for charges made to the account, settling those as quickly as possible is a good idea. You can wait for the final statement to be issued or sign into your online account to view recent transactions. 

  • Check your credit reports. If you have removed yourself as the authorized user from an account, track your credit report for a few months after removal to ensure that the account drops off your credit report. If you still see the account reflected on your credit report months after removal, you may need to contact the card issuer or file a dispute with credit bureaus.

Frequently asked questions

An authorized user is an individual who is allowed to use someone else’s credit card but who does not own the credit card account and isn’t ultimately responsible for the payments.

When you’re added as an authorized user on a credit card account, you’ll be issued a physical card with your name on it. Ultimately, though, the account still belongs to the primary cardholder.

You can typically remove yourself as an authorized user on someone else's credit card, even without their help or approval. Call the number on the back of your credit card to request your removal.

It depends on the situation. If the card in question has been well maintained with on-time payments and low credit utilization, removing the authorized user from the account will effectively erase that positive payment history from their credit report. This is especially concerning if it is a long-standing account or the authorized user's longest-held credit account, as eliminating them will diminish the average age of their accounts.

On the other hand, if the account in question has had frequent late payments or carries a high credit utilization, removing an authorized user (or removing yourself as an authorized user) could give a boost to your credit scores.

Most major credit card issuers report account information to credit bureaus every 30 days in conjunction with the end of the card’s billing cycle. So keep an eye on your credit report for the first few months after the change to ensure the account falls off your credit report. If this doesn’t happen, you may need to contact the card issuer or file a dispute with the credit bureaus.

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