When you’re a student it’s fairly commonplace to access student loans in order to cover the costs associated with attending college. In some cases, students marry and only later discuss whether or not they have student loans that will eventually come due. In very specific cases, this discussion may not occur until the once happily married couple decides to get divorced. Similar unpleasant surprises often occur regarding credit card debt that one spouse was unaware of during their marriage.

When getting divorced, both parties are required to submit a financial affidavit. The affidavit should include all assets and debts. Both student loan balances and credit card debt will be included.

During the course of the divorce there are many issues that must be discussed, negotiated and decided. One major portion of the negotiations will be the division of property. Some find this confusing as they do not associate debt with “property,” but the division of property refers to debt as well as assets. In some cases, student loan debt will not be considered marital debt as it can be argued that it only benefits the individual whose education it paid for. Credit card debt is more likely to be considered marital debt regardless of whose name the account is in, but in order to present a solid argument you will want to determine when the debt was incurred, by who and for what purpose. Other facts to determine that could be relevant during the division of property include whether or not the debt was incurred during the marriage and if the purchases were for the benefit of the family or not.

Many statutes governing family law are state specific so specific and detailed legal advice regarding the division of property should be obtained from an experienced divorce attorney practicing in your state. Get in touch with Aronow Law PC today so we can discuss your case in detail.