Adding an authorized user to Capital One

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Adding an authorized user to your Capital One credit card can have great benefits for both you and the authorized user, but there are some things to consider before making such a decision. While you can improve both of your credit scores or help a family member establish a loan, you will also be responsible for paying off the balance they put on the card.

An authorized user is an additional cardholder added to a credit account with the permission of the original primary cardholder. They will receive their own card, but all fees, rewards and payments will be held in one account.

Capital One Authorized User Policy

Here’s a look at Capital One’s authorized user policy:

  • The number of authorized users is not limited – you can add as many as you want.
  • You can add family members as authorized users (for example, spouse or children), but authorized users do not have to be related to you (for example, friends or colleagues).
  • Unlike most other card issuers, there is no minimum age required to add an authorized user.
  • You will need to provide the names, phone numbers, social security numbers, dates of birth, and addresses of authorized users when adding them.

Before adding an authorized user, make sure they will spend money responsibly; Not every card offers the ability to impose spending limits to prevent authorized users from overspending on your account.

If you notice that an authorized user is spending too much money, in some cases your only defense is to block his card immediately. Until you unlock it, the user will not be able to make purchases on the account.

You also have the option to remove them from your account by logging in, clicking Services, and selecting Manage Authorized Users. Click on the username you want to delete, then check the “delete user” box.

Luckily, your rewards cannot be cashed out by authorized users unless you allow them to, so you don’t have to worry about missing points, miles, or cashback.

How to add an authorized user to your Capital One account

  1. Login to your account
  2. Click “Services”
  3. Select Manage Authorized Users.
  4. Click Add New User.

When adding a user, you will need to provide Capital One with that user’s name, date of birth, and social security number.

Should I add an authorized user to the Capital One card?

Adding an authorized user to your Capital One card can bring great benefits to both you and your added users. However, there is a degree of risk in adding an authorized user, so you should think about it before deciding if this option is right for you.

While authorized users of Capital One will charge the same account as the primary cardholder, the primary cardholder is responsible for paying off the balance. Because of this, it’s important to make sure that your authorized users won’t overpay. Before you add an authorized user to your Capital One credit card, make a plan for how much each person can spend and when and how they will repay you.

Becoming an authorized user can be a great way to boost someone’s reputation. Whether it’s a spouse or a child, adding them as an authorized user will help them improve their credit score or build their credit from scratch. Whenever you make a payment on time, it will show up not only on your credit report, but also on your authorized users’ reports.

The advantage for the primary cardholder is that depending on which Capital One card they have, they will be able to increase their rewards. For example, if you have a rewards card such as the Capital One Venture Rewards credit card, authorized users earn 5x miles on hotels and car rentals booked through Capital One Travel, and 2x miles on all other purchases when paying card.

There are both pros and cons to consider when adding an authorized user to your card. Authorized users can generally enjoy some of the card’s privileges, while the responsibility lies with the primary cardholder. Read on for a summary of the associated risks and benefits:


  • Create and increase credit. Every timely payment made to your account not only has a positive effect on your credit score, but ultimately increases the credit of any authorized users. In addition, you can help someone, such as a family member, build a credit history by adding them to your account.
  • Increase bonus points. If you have a bonus credit card, any purchases made on your account by authorized users will count towards your total rewards. All points earned by users will be combined into one account.


  • Overspending and missed payments. Since not all credit cards allow you to set a spending limit on an authorized user’s card, you may find yourself in a situation where they have spent more than you expected. Because the primary cardholder is responsible for the account, you may be left with a balance that you cannot pay off.
  • Higher loan utilization and interest payments. Increasing the number of payments in your account will likely increase your credit utilization ratio. When your credit utilization ratio is too high, your credit score is negatively affected. Also, if you don’t pay off your balances in full each month, you may be subject to higher interest rates.

bottom line

Adding an authorized user to your Capital One credit card comes with both risk and reward. You can increase your total rewards, but you can also end up with an expensive bill. Because of the various pros and cons, it’s important to give your decision full thought and plan ahead before adding an authorized user to your account.

Luckily, Capital One makes it easy to add an authorized user if you decide it’s the right choice for you.

Editorial disclaimer

The editorial content on this page is based solely on the objective judgment of our contributors and is not based on advertising. It was not provided or ordered by credit card issuers. However, we may receive compensation when you click on links to our partners’ products.

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