Am I Responsible For My Spouse’s Credit Card Debt?

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When you and your spouse say “I do” at the altar, you likely envision a happy marriage after merging your lives. However, when the honeymoon ends, you may be shocked to discover the state of their finances. If you’re worried about assuming liability for your spouse’s credit card debt, the following blog explores what you must know about these concerns. Additionally, you’ll learn how a California consumer lawyer can assist you with any issues regarding your marital finances.

How Is Debt Between Spouses Handled in California?

If your spouse has considerable debt in their name, you may worry how it will impact you. While in some states, a spouse’s own personal debt does not affect their partner, this is not always the case in other states. It’s important to understand that California is a community property state. This means any asset, including debt, acquired during the marriage technically belongs to both spouses.

However, if you can prove that you did not benefit from your spouse’s debt, the courts may deem it separate property. For example, if they use their credit card to purchase designer clothing items that you never used, you may be able to detach yourself from assuming liability. In most instances, however, your spouse’s credit card debt will reflect on you in California.

Additionally, if you and your spouse open a joint credit card, you will be liable for any debt accrued on the account. Not only can you face calls from creditors, but this will impact your credit score. This can spiral out of control if their debt affects your ability to make other payments, like mortgages, car payments, or other personal loans.

If your spouse files for bankruptcy to control some of their debt, and you have co-signed on a loan or have a joint credit card, you may still be liable for the remaining balance, even if your spouse’s debt is discharged.

What Should I Do if My Spouse’s Credit Card Debt Negatively Impacts Me?

If you discover that your spouse’s credit is impacting you and you’re facing harassment from creditors or a potential lawsuit, it’s imperative to connect with an experienced attorney. Discovering that you are named in a lawsuit for funds you never used can be incredibly upsetting. However, it’s in your best interest to remain calm and proceed with caution.

At Los Angeles Legal Solutions, we understand how devastating these times can be. That’s why our team is committed to doing everything in our power to stop creditor harassment and work with you and your creditors to prevent a costly lawsuit. We have experience handling these matters, so you can rest assured your case is in good hands. Contact us today to discuss the details of your debt with a member of our legal team.

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