Even in the most amicable arrangements, divorce can take a considerable toll on your emotional, mental, physical, and financial well-being. Even if you planned and did everything right, something unexpected can happen. What happens if you’re suddenly in more debt after a divorce? What are your rights, and how to get help?
The Best Defense is a Good Offense
Here is the number one thing you need to know about debt and divorce: even if your former spouse is responsible for paying something, their failure to pay can still affect your credit. You might think the divorce judgment would protect you from this financial burden, but in the eyes of the lender, you’re both responsible. Your former partner might be required to pay it based on the court’s ruling, but how do you know they will pay?
My best advice? Before signing the divorce papers, talk to your lawyer about how you can be sure your soon-to-be former partner comes with proof that an account has been refinanced out of your name or paid.
Your Financial Rights
When you divorce, know that both of you will be responsible for outstanding joint credit card debt. However, it’s essential to know your state’s laws around outstanding debt, as it can vary. And there are always exceptions, such as the judge deciding to assign debt even if it wasn’t initially your debt. It can be complicated, so having a good family lawyer and mediator is critical, even when the divorce is amicable.
Setting Yourself up for Success
There are a few steps to follow to get all your ducks in the proverbial row.
- Get organized: assemble your financial records and review your credit report so you know what’s what. There are often surprise shared accounts and closed shared accounts don’t matter.
- Contact creditors: once you know how debts are divided, contact creditors to ensure you’re not on the hook for something that shouldn’t be yours.
- Pay bills on time: keep paying bills on time to keep your credit score as healthy as possible.
- Ask for help: it’s okay to negotiate with your lenders to give you some more financial cushion.
- Watch your credit report: the sooner you catch a problem, the easier it is to fix.
You don’t have to do this alone. If you need credit repair, we can help.
Getting Help Through Credit Repair
Divorce is never easy, even if it’s necessary. But you can put yourself in the best position possible by planning. We know life gets in the way, so if something unforeseen happens, don’t hesitate to reach out for help. Best Credit RX is here to help you live your best life possible. We’ll work with you to repair your credit and get you on the path to financial health.