What happens to scores if Dad is removed as a co-signer?

Dear Speaking of Credit,
I am currently co-signed with my dad on my only Visa credit card through BECU Credit Union. I was wondering if I were to release him as a co-signer, would this negatively affect our credit scores? I also have not missed any payments and have paid my balance in full since I got the card a little over a year ago. -Jerry

Dear Jerry,
First, have you talked to the credit union to find out if they’ll allow you to release your dad as a co-signer? Though they may not, I’m figuring he was probably added because, at the time the card originated, you were under 21 and without sufficient income of your own. If that’s the case, they should be willing to remove him.

If the credit union agrees to release your dad from co-signership, do you know if they will also have it removed from his credit report? Or will they leave it on and simply stop updating it at the credit bureau each month? If the credit union doesn’t instruct the credit bureaus to remove it and he wants it gone, he can dispute it with the bureaus and the credit union on the basis that he no longer has a financial obligation for the card.

Assuming you can release your dad as a co-signer, removing him from the card will have absolutely no impact on your score. Simple as that.

And if dad’s credit score is good, removing him as co-signer should not impact his score either. Only if his credit score is not so good or he doesn’t have any of his own cards could the removal of this card’s positive payment history and low utilization contributions hurt his score. I’m doubting this is the case, though, since he wouldn’t have qualified as a co-signer on your card if his credit weren’t good.

Hope this helps. Let me know if you have any further questions.

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