I have a good friend in USA who is a permanent resident and is married to a US citizen.

They have only one income (although his income is a bit over $100K per year) and his wife (who is the citizen) has not had any income for over a decade. She also does not have any debt. They have common budget and he had paid off the little bit of debt she had (less than $4K) last year.

His own debts are moderate (less than $10K total on revolving credit + two car loans totaling about $38K). Neither one of them has any bad credit markings on their credit report. They have been married for over 20+ years but moved back to USA about 4 years ago (they lived abroad because of his work and kept filing the international tax returns to IRS).

Anyway, he told me that her FICO score is about 50 points higher than his.

Could this be caused by that he is a permanent resident instead of a citizen?

  • 1
    I'm not convinced 50 points difference in the FICO score is anything more than random noise in the formulas...
    – keshlam
    Commented Dec 18, 2014 at 21:46
  • no. this is unrelated.
    – CQM
    Commented Dec 19, 2014 at 2:00
  • I would guess she has a longer credit history than him. Commented May 21, 2015 at 13:02

2 Answers 2


To the best of my knowledge, your immigration status is unknown to the credit reporting agencies, so changing from visa to green card or from green card to citizenship will have no effect whatsoever on your credit score.


Income is not a factor in credit score, current debt and credit inquiries are. Given that he is the one active financially (borrowing and paying for things) it actually makes sense for her to have a better credit score, she probably has a card or two in her name, which gets paid off entirely each month. He on the other hand has a higher amount (greater utilization) and more recent inquires.

As for your actual question: immigration status is not one of the factors in your credit score, and it would likely be illegal for it to be included.

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