Consider credit in a divorce
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Consider credit in a divorce

| May 18, 2020 | Firm News

Credit can become an issue for North Carolinians who are looking to start over again after their divorce. The split between spouses can cause each spouse’s credit score to fall, although the divorce itself is not the direct predicate for the drop. Each spouse should take steps to protect their own credit during the divorce.

The first thing that a spouse should do is review their own situation. They should learn about every account that impacts their credit and know whether it is a personal account or a joint one. To do this, they should request credit reports from each of the three major bureaus. If there are any joint accounts, those should be closed immediately. Many spouses have fallen victim to debts run up by their spouse during a divorce while the two still had joint accounts. It is crucial to be proactive to keep that from happening.

One should also communicate early to creditors that they are going through a divorce. While it may not change the status of the debt, it alerts the creditor to be on the lookout for anything suspicious. If one is really concerned about their spouse’s ability to harm their credit before the divorce is final, they should consider freezing their credit. This would keep one spouse from running up debts in the other spouse’s name.

Credit and debt are often an issue in divorces as Americans carry a much higher debt level than ever. Many couples have extensive deliberations about who is responsible for what. A divorce attorney may help protect their client when they are negotiating the divorce agreement to keep them from being responsible for the other spouse’s debt. They might also insist on a larger share of the marital estate to help pay back some of the debt.