For many relationships, money is the number one stress factor. Some couples manage to work through their financial problems together. Others decide that the best solution is dissolving the marriage by getting a divorce attorney Tampa. Typically, each spouse blames the other and can see no other way out. Regardless who is to blame, a divorce will not automatically solve debt problems.
Divorce and Debt
The divorce settlement will usually divide debt that you and your spouse incurred during the marriage. This can happen even if you believe your spouse spent more. Since these bills transpired during the marriage, getting a divorce does not change the responsibility each spouse has to pay the bills.
Keep in mind that the divorce settlement is between you and your spouse, not creditors who can try to collect the debt from either you or your ex-spouse. Therefore, if your ex chooses to not pay her or his share, a creditor can attempt to collect payment from you. One person filing for bankruptcy after the divorce is finalized means creditors will look to the other person to satisfy debts.
How Bankruptcy Can Affect Your Divorce Plans
If you are considering filing for bankruptcy and getting a divorce, you may need to decide which one holds immediate importance. Generally, bankruptcy is a priority and filing during divorce proceedings can delay how assets and liabilities are distributed. You will not be able to do both at the same time.
Another point of consideration is bankruptcy courts treat income differently if you are married, separated, single or divorced. For obvious reasons, you income is less after a divorce than if you were still married and shared living expenses with another person.
Discuss Your Options with an Attorney
If you have decided to divorce your spouse, the last thing you want is to have bill collectors coming after you for her or his debts. It can be unsettling to think you are beginning a new life only to find that you are still responsible for something that caused your marriage to end. Any concerns you have about protecting yourself and your finances should be covered with your divorce attorney.
In some cases, protection might include placing a lien on property that belongs to your ex. This action could help to ensure you are not stuck paying her or his share of debts. Bankruptcy does not shield you from paying court ordered child support or alimony, but it may help you avoid being responsible for portions of debts that your ex should pay.