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June 29, 2018.
posted in Property Division

On behalf of The Law Office of Gustavo E. Frances, P.A.

Have you been told that married couples should have both joint and separate financial accounts? This is true to a certain extent. It’s a good idea to have joint checking accounts, separate savings accounts, and separate retirement accounts that name each other as beneficiaries. It also might be a good idea for each of you to have individual checking accounts for spending money.

When it comes to credit cards, it’s best for married couples to hold only joint accounts. You might be wondering why the change in the method with credit cards. Well, for starters, it helps you avoid any surprises should the marriage end in divorce or should your spouse get into financial trouble. Our Fort Lauderdale property division lawyer provides information as to why married couples should hold joint credit cards in today’s post.

Staggering Numbers

There are staggering numbers when it comes to how many people in the United States hide some form of credit card or checking account from their spouse. According to a report from Business Insider, close to 72 million people hide one of these accounts from their spouse for one reason or another.

Aside from those hiding accounts, there are even more married people who decide to openly hold individual credit cards and individual checking accounts. For the most part, these people open the accounts after telling their spouse or even with their spouse as the spouse does the exact same thing. With individual accounts, the holder is able to spend their money on anything they please without any guilt.

Separate Credit Cards Cause Harm

Some financial experts believe that when married couples hold separate credit cards it can cause a lot more harm than good with the relationship. Financial experts and marriage counselors agree that married couples are supposed to be a team. The team aspect goes away when one spouse has a hidden credit card in their own name. This allows the spouse to make purchases without telling the other spouse and accrue debt in the dark.

Both Spouses Responsible for the Debt

As mentioned above, the spouse with the hidden credit card can accrue debt without being monitored. The scary part about this is that both spouses will be responsible for the debt when it is not paid. You are not exempt from the debt simply because your name is not on the credit card. The debt will stay with you even if the two of you get a divorce.

The situation becomes worse if you were to divorce and your spouse fails to pay back that debt. No matter the amount of debt the spouse has, you will be partly responsible for it. That means you will need to help pay it back or face creditors and issues with your credit score just like your spouse.

Are you worried that you could be surprised with debt if you get divorced in Florida? Contact our Fort Lauderdale property division attorney today to discuss your situation and find out how debt in your spouse’s name can affect you in a divorce. The office can be reached at 954-533-2756.

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