CFPB Proposal Will Help Stay-At-Home Spouses Get Credit Cards

CFPB Proposal Will Help Stay-At-Home Spouses Get Credit Cards

October 17, 2012         Written By John H. Oldshue

Today, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is proposing a new rule to make it easier for stay-at-home spouses to obtain a credit card.

The CFPB proposal allows the stay-at-home spouse or partner to rely on shared income when applying for a credit card account, rather than individual income.

“When stay-at-home spouses or partners have the ability to make payments on a credit card, they should be able to obtain a card in their own name,” said CFPB Director Richard Cordray in a statement. “Today the CFPB is proposing common-sense changes that would facilitate credit access for spouses or partners who do not work outside the home.”

A 2009 CARD Act provision currently mandates issuers look at a consumer’s individual income, rather than their household income, when deciding to approve that consumer for a credit card. The rule originally tried to prevent young adults from using their parents’ income to obtain a credit card and subsequently ringing up too much debt in their own name. The unintended consequence of this provision is that it hurt the stay-at-home spouse that generates little or no income.



The information contained within this article was accurate as of October 17, 2012. For up-to-date
information on any of the terms, cards or offers mentioned above, visit the issuer's website.


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About John H. Oldshue

John Oldshue is the creator of LowCards.com. He worked for over 15 years in television and won an Emmy award for his reporting. He covers credit card rate issues for LowCards.com.
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