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Credit cards and divorce

Those who get divorced in Illinois may find that they are still responsible for joint credit card debts incurred while married. However, there are ways to make sure that marital debts don't haunt an individual in the future. For instance, the debt can be transferred onto a credit card in the former spouse's name. It may also be worthwhile to pay off joint debts before the divorce becomes official.

An agreement to divide credit card debts can be negotiated with the help of a mediator or other neutral party. If a joint debt balance exists after a marriage ends, the creditor can still choose to come after either party to that balance. This could result in an individual experiencing a lower credit score even if he or she isn't responsible for the debt. This is because a creditor is not bound by the divorce decree. Instead, it is bound only by the agreement made with the parties who agreed to repay the credit card balance.

It is possible to write language in a divorce decree that holds one party responsible for paying off a credit card balance. However, it doesn't mean that he or she will choose to do so. Furthermore, the time and money it can take to hold that person to the agreement could be more than a person has to pursue the matter.

Debts as well as assets can be a part of a property division agreement. In many cases, the spouse who accrued the debt or has the means to pay it will be responsible for taking care of it. An attorney may provide advice to individuals who have joint debts with a former spouse. For instance, they may advise an individual to cancel joint credit cards before the divorce is official.

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