If you’re getting divorced, some of your debts have to be divided along with your assets. For example, many married couples will have a joint credit card account. It doesn’t matter who technically swipes the card at the grocery store or makes an online purchase. Both people are responsible for the balance of that account, so any remaining debt has to be split up when they get divorced.
But what about student loans? Student debt in the United States has been spiraling out of control for some time now, and it is currently the second-highest type of debt that consumers have. If you and your spouse get divorced, are you going to be responsible for your ex’s student loans?
Did you take the loans out after getting married?
The timing of these loans makes a big difference. If your ex already had student loans when the two of you got married, you do not have to split them during a divorce. They are a separate liability. But if your ex took out more loans or enrolled in school after you got married, then they are a marital debt and you’ll have to divide them.
Did you co-sign on the loans?
Another thing to consider is simply if you co-signed on any loans with your spouse. Similar to a mortgage, co-signing means that you are still responsible for that debt, regardless of your marital status. The lending company doesn’t care if you got divorced. As such, you’ll probably have to divide those debts.
Splitting up debt during divorce can be contentious and complicated. Couples who are going through this process need to know about all of their legal options.