Does Divorce Hurt Your Credit Score?

Alan R. Burton Attorney at Law

Many people believe that when they get married, their credit score will be combined with their spouse’s and that their credit will be intertwined. Therefore, many people may wonder what will happen to their credit if they later decide to get divorced. First, it is important to understand that your marital status does not directly impact your credit–not at the time of marriage nor at the time of divorce–since at no time does your credit fuse with your spouses. However, this does not mean that your credit score will not be affected due to divorce, as there are other factors that may cause some credit issues.

Joint Debts

Though your marriage does not affect your score, the non-payment of joint debts wil. If you have a mortgage, auto loans, or other credit accounts in both your and your spouse’s names, you and your spouse will have to agree how to continue paying these following separation. Your divorce decree should equitably divide your joint debts in accordance with Florida law, however, you may not be able to refinance certain debts to remove your name. This means that, if the court assigns certain joint debts to your ex-spouse and they fail to pay the debts, your score could be affected. While you may be able to dispute late payments by using your divorce decree or may be able to report the non-payment of debts to the court, this can be a complex process and may not necessarily raise your score.

Financial Difficulties

Too often, divorce can leave you with financial struggles. From the loss of your spouse’s income to legal costs and more, you may find it difficult to pay your debts. It is important to have an experienced divorce attorney on your side who can fight for adequate child and/or spousal support to preserve your financial well-being. However, even with such support, the transition from married to divorced can often take a toll on your credit if you are not careful. If needed, work with your attorney on ways to increase your income and decrease your living expenses to prevent credit issues.

Vindictive Acts By Your Spouse

Many married couples have access to one another’s accounts, including credit accounts. If your spouse is an authorized user on your accounts or even has your physical credit card, there may be the risk they decide to vindictively use your credit accounts without your knowledge. If you do not know you have a balance, you may miss payments. Furthermore, the debt may become too high for you to afford the minimum payment. During separation and divorce, always keep track of all of your credit accounts and regularly check your balances for accuracy, even if they are only in your name.

An Experienced Boca Raton Divorce Attorney Can Help You

A skilled divorce lawyer will understand the wide range of financial issues that divorce can cause, including an adverse impact on your credit score, and can provide valuable advice to help limit the issues your face. Please call the Boca Raton law office of Alan R. Burton today at 954-229-1660 for help with your situation.

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