James R. Schaffer, P.A.

Debt doesn’t have to ruin your divorce

| Jul 13, 2020 | Divorce |

Financial stress can affect so many different aspects of a person’s life. It can even exacerbate marital problems. Unfortunately, those same financial worries that help some people realize that filing for divorce may be best also hold them back from actually taking that step. Having a better understanding of how issues such as debt are handled can be beneficial to those who believe their debt is too high to move forward with a divorce.

When Florida couples divide their marital assets, they do so equitably, which is often confused with being 50/50. An equitable division is one that is fair, which could be closer to something like a 70/30 split depending on a number of factors. This means that one spouse could end up with more debt, especially if he or she earns significantly more than the other.

Which debts are divided?

Only marital debt has to be divided, which may be anything from auto loans and mortgages to student loans and credit cards. If these debts were acquired during marriage, they are most likely considered marital debt. Therefore, a spouse who earned less and took out a credit card in only his or her name might not necessarily be ordered to pay that debt back as part of the property division in a divorce.

It is smart to be aware of one’s finances when thinking of divorce. However, it can be easy to let fear take over and avoid making the important decision to end an unhappy marriage. For those who are worried about coming out on the other side of the divorce in a financially secure situation, it may be helpful to seek out guidance from someone who is knowledgeable in Florida family law.