Getting divorced can impact every aspect of your life. There is one area that it can impact that you might not be able to fully control — your credit score. This is because when you get a divorce, you and your ex have to divide the property that you have amassed. Property includes assets and debts, and this is where things get a bit tricky.
When you and your ex divide up debts, you become responsible for paying for some accounts and your ex becomes responsible for paying for the rest. As long as you and your ex both pay the bills on time, there will be minimal to no negative impact on your credit report. If you make the payments on time, but your ex doesn’t, you might notice that your credit begins to suffer.
The creditors who hold your debts are placed in a rather precarious position when you divorce. You and your ex both agreed to pay for the debts that are part of joint accounts. The creditors didn’t seek a divorce, and they aren’t held to the terms of the divorce since this is a civil procedure.
From a legal standpoint, the creditors can come after you and your ex for payment on accounts, even if your ex is supposed to be responsible for the debt. This means that your credit score is partially in your ex’s hand until the debt is paid off or transferred to an individual account. If you can, work with your ex to find out if the debts you are supposed to pay can be transferred to an account in your name only and the debts that your ex is responsible for paying are transferred in an individual account that doesn’t have you listed as a responsible party.
Source: FindLaw, “Credit and Divorce,” accessed Dec. 09, 2016