Dividing Debts In Divorce
When a couple is divorcing, part of the process is to divide the debts. Debts in a marriage will be divided into three categories so that they can be distributed correctly between the former spouses. These categories include;
- Debts from prior to the marriage
- Single person debts during the marriage
- Joint debts during the marriage
Debts Prior To The Marriage
Individual debts prior to the marriage will remain with the person after the marriage is dissolved. Much like personal property purchased before the marriage, these debts do not belong to the marriage. Any debts falling into this category will not be considered part of the divorce.
Single Person Debts During The Marriage
Many people retain independent credit lines after they are married. For instance, a person may purchase a car in their own name for their own use or establish a credit card that they use for themselves alone. These debts, in most cases, remain with the person that is assigned to the debt.
If there are questions about these types of debts being a joint debt, regardless of only one name being on the credit line, the Tulsa divorce attorneys for both sides of the divorce will have to negotiate how the debt is handled.
Joint Debts During The Marriage
In most cases, joint debts will be equally divided between both parties. Many negotiations occur that require that the debts are paid off prior to the finalization of the divorce to ensure that the accounts can be closed and both parties walk away from the credit line free and clear. These debts require the most negotiations during the divorce.
Your attorneys may also have to distinguish between secured and unsecured debts and who will retain possession of the items purchased with the credit lines. Outside of negotiations about child care and support, the division of debts can take the most negotiation time during the divorce process.