Applying for a joint credit card used to be a widely-offered option at most financial institutions. However, some banks have stopped allowing this practice, citing the simplicity of offering fewer credit options and the requirement to comply with federal regulations. For those that do still offer this option, you can apply online or by visiting your local branch.
Who's In, Who's Out
Bank of America, Wells Fargo, Discover and U.S. Bank are among the financial institutions that still offer joint credit cards as of this publication. Chase Bank, Capital One, American Express, TD Bank and HSBC do not offer joint credit cards.
Check with your local credit union to see if it offers a joint card. To apply, you will more than likely need to open an account and become a member of the credit union. Some retailers who offer credit cards might provide a joint option as well, depending on the underwriter. Those financed through banks such as HSBC that don't offer the option are unlikely to allow for joint cards.
Married couples sometimes apply for joint cards because they want shared financial responsibility, yet a common misconception with joint credit cards is that each person is responsible for only half of the bill. This is not true. Both parties are equally responsible for the entire amount charged on the card. Depending on your state, obligations to pay the balance might remain an equal responsibility for both parties after divorce.
Michelle Dwyer is a U.S. Army veteran writing fiction and nonfiction since 2003. She specializes in business, careers, leadership, military affairs and organizational change and behavior. Dwyer received an MBA from Tarleton State University/Texas A&M Central Texas and an MFA in creative writing from National University in La Jolla, Calif.