How Does Pasco County, Florida Handle Debts In A Divorce?
In many marriages, the division of assets isn’t complicated, because there aren’t any assets. Instead, there are a lot of marital debts. Florida law states that marital debts, like marital assets, are divided according to the law on equitable distribution. It’s a very common issue with the divorces I handle in Pasco County & Hernando County.
Equitable distribution means that all marital assets, not separate assets, are divided in a manner which is fair. In most cases, the assets are divided equally. However, there are a lot of factors which are taken into account by courts in dividing assets, including the length of the marriage, each spouse’s contribution to the marriage, each spouse’s debts, the situation of any minor children, and each spouse’s economic circumstances.
Marital debts are usually divided equally. Debts that either party had prior to the marriage are not marital debts, and are not divided during a divorce.
The cut-off date for determining if a debt is a marital debt is the date on which the parties agree, or the date on which the parties enter into a separation agreement or file a divorce petition. Ideally, both parties will divide the debts among themselves, and the court will incorporate this into the final judgment of the divorce. The court may assign, or the parties will agree, responsibility for payment of a debt to one spouse or the other.
After debts are divided between spouses, if your ex-spouse fails to pay for part of a joint debt, the creditor may come after you for payment, even if your divorce documents say that you are not legally responsible for the debt.
It’s important to let your creditor know about the divorce, and you may wish to call your divorce attorney as well if a creditor continues to pursue payment from you on a debt which you aren’t responsible for under the terms of the divorce.