Legal Question in Bankruptcy in Minnesota

Securing debt in a divorce decree

My husband and I are divorcing. He has incurred significant debt in the last three years and is unable to pay his bills. We do not as a married couple qualify for chapter 7. He is wanting to take the debt, then divorce and declare chapter 7. I am concerned about my liability for the debt after we divorce. He has essentially been out of the home for three years. Can I divorce him without the creditors coming after me.

Asked on 12/11/06, 4:05 pm

2 Answers from Attorneys

David Kelly-952-544-6356 Kelly Law Office

Re: Securing debt in a divorce decree

His plan should work unless we are talkiing about debts or accounts that have your name on them. If there is a joint debt with both names on it, a bankruptcy filed by him leaves you vulnerable to that creditor. He no longer owes the debt, but you can expect the creditor to come after you.

The creditors don't care if there is a divorce decree that says he is supposed to pay the debts. The divorce decree is a court order that applies only to you and him and nobody else, certainly not creditors.

This is essentially a matter of whose name is on the bill in the first place.

My contact information is a

You have enough going on here that you should be consulting with a lawyer.

Good luck.

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Answered on 12/11/06, 5:05 pm
Sam Calvert Calvert Law Office

Re: Securing debt in a divorce decree

I don't understand the comment about not qualifying for chapter 7. Just because you are married does not make you automatically liable for your spouse's ordinary contract debts. If you are liable for the bill before the divorce, you will be liable for the bill after the divorce. You will want to talk carefully to your divorce attorney to shore up, as best you can, your argument that he is ordered in the divorce to pay those bills and must indemnify you from liability on account of those bills.

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Answered on 12/11/06, 5:06 pm

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