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Are you at risk of taking on your spouse’s debt after divorce?

On Behalf of | Nov 7, 2017 | Uncategorized

Most Florida residents accumulate some sort of debt during their lifetimes. Some individuals may accrue more liabilities than others, and you may have your fair share of outstanding balances as well. While you certainly do not want your debts to negatively impact your family, you may wonder what will happen to your debts and your spouse’s debts in the event that you divorce.

During property division proceedings, the court often divides debts as well as assets. As a result, you could potentially wind up with some of your spouse’s debts becoming your responsibility. Therefore, you may wish to better understand how the court could potentially divide specific debts during your dissolution processes.

Mortgage debt

Though you and your spouse may have purchased your dream home after the wedding, it may now seem that your home feels more like a trap. Marital issues can easily cause the family home to lose its once comforting appeal, and during divorce, the idea of having to keep up the mortgage may seem unfathomable. When it comes to dividing mortgage debt, you could end up with this obligation if you make a considerably higher income than your spouse.

Of course, other options also exist for dealing with this particular liability. For instance, if neither of you want to keep the home, you could put it on the market and determine what to do with the proceeds rather than dealing with the remaining debt.

Credit card debt

Credit cards can often come in handy when you are in a financial pinch or when the cards have useful benefits. However, if your spouse has a tendency to use credit to go on retail therapy sprees, you may worry about dealing with some of those balances. If you have joint credit card accounts, the court may decide that you do have an obligation to pay at least a portion of those outstanding balances.

Medical debt

It is also not uncommon for some sort of medical debt to accrue by one party or another. Because one person was the recipient of the needed medical care, you may feel that the cared-for party should remain responsible for the remaining costs. However, the court may look at several factors to determine what the division results could be.

Addressing debt during divorce

In a best-case scenario, you may have created a prenuptial agreement that addressed how debt should be divided in the event of divorce. If you did not, you still have hope. You could explore your legal options to determine what division tactics could potentially help you avoid taking on your soon-to-be ex-spouse’s debt after ending the marriage.