If I file for bankruptcy, will it hurt my co-signer’s credit score?

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In a Nutshell

__No__. In short, if you file bankruptcy, your social security number is the one the bankruptcy attaches to. A co-signer’s social security number will not be involved, and thus the bankruptcy does not go on their credit.

Written by Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad.  Reviewed by Attorney Andrea Wimmer
Updated July 22, 2020


No. In short, if you file bankruptcy, your social security number is the one the bankruptcy attaches to. A co-signer’s social security number will not be involved, and thus the bankruptcy does not go on their credit.

But, unless you or your co-signer are making regular on-time payments on the debt even after your bankruptcy case has been filed, your co-signer's credit score will be negatively impacted. If you stop making payments on the debt, and your co-signer isn't making payments either, this will be reported to the credit bureaus for both of you. This happens irrespective of whether a bankruptcy has been filed. Your Chapter 7 discharge will not protect the co-signer from creditor actions.

If you have a co-signer on your car loan, check out this article to learn more about how this will work.



About the authors
Kristin Turner, Harvard Law Grad

Kristin is a recipient of Harvard Law School’s Public Welfare Foundation A2J Tech Fellowship. At Harvard Law, she served as a member of the Harvard Defenders, the Women’s Law Association, and Harvard Law Negotiation Review. She was the 2016 – 2017 president of the Black Law Stude... read more

Attorney Andrea Wimmer

Andrea practiced exclusively as debtors’ counsel in consumer chapter 7 and 13 bankruptcy cases for more than 10 years before joining Upsolve, first as a contributing writer and editor and ultimately joining the team full time in August 2019. While in private practice, Andrea hand... read more

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