What happens to debts in a divorce?

One question that many people have as they are going through a divorce is what will happen to the couple’s debts. Of course, this is a major source of concern that some have because no one wants to pay debts that the other party is responsible for. What many people don’t realize is that this is taken care of in the same way assets are divided. Both assets and debts in Massachusetts are divided through a process known as equitable distribution. This simply means that the assets and debts will be divided in a fair and just manner as the court determines. However, this does not necessarily mean that the assets and debts will be divided equally. The court takes a wide variety of factors into consideration when it comes to dividing assets and debts. These factors include the following:

  • The length of the marriage
  • The age of each spouse
  • The health of each spouse
  • The standard of living that the couple is accustomed to
  • The value of marital assets
  • The amount of debt the couple has
  • The earning capacity of the couple
  • The income of each party
  • The contribution of each party

It is also important to note that only marital debts are divided in divorce. Any debts from before the marriage, such as student loans, may remain separate. If you have questions, contact our firm today.

If you require compassionate and knowledgeable legal guidance for a matter of divorce, family or estate law, please contact the experienced attorneys at the Law Offices of Cynthia L. Hanley today.