You may have come across the term ‘Joint Application Credit Card’ and wondered exactly what it is. Well it is basically an application for a credit card account which will be shared by two people, and they will each have a card, but there will only be one bill issued each month for the total credit on both cards. A husband and wife, live-in partners or parent and son/daughter may typically apply for a joint application credit card. The two individuals involved would both be required to sign for their cards and both would be jointly and severally responsible for the total debt on the account.
Here’s how it works.. Firstly an individual will complete a credit card application form and will then ask for an extra card. The extra card will have the name of the second person on it, but both credit cards with share the same account number. For wedded pairs it makes the management of household finances much easier to organize. Another useful benefit of the joint application credit card is when a parent is assisting their child in establishing good credit. Children away from home at college will often require a parent or guardian’s backing for a loan and the joint application credit card is the perfect answer.
However, this type of credit card does have one or two disadvantages and you need to understand the implications fully before you enter into any legal agreements. If, for example, one of the parties runs up a large debt on their card, that debt is also the liability of the other person on the joint account. This issue often becomes a major problem in the case of husband and wife separating or divorcing and neither of them want to take responsibility for the debt. While there is a debt on the card, neither single party may cancel the card. Once the full amount of the charge on the card has been paid off, either of the parties may cancel the card, thereby ensuring that no further purchases can be made against it.
The joint application credit card obviously brings trust issues into question, but there are those for whom this type of agreement will work perfectly. You’ll find that most of the larger credit card companies will be able to offer you an account to suit your needs, but you should always read thoroughly the conditions of the card and the terms of service and do not hesitate to get in contact directly with the credit card provider should you have any specific question on the subject.