Am I fiscally responsible if my husband drives kills/hits a person while under the influence?

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Am I fiscally responsible if my husband drives kills/hits a person while under the influence?

We each have our own cars and have separate car insurance. The house is in my name. How would this effect me financially? Our savings basically are from his IRA. If so, would it be best to file for legal separation to avoid his debts?

Asked on February 8, 2015 under Personal Injury, New Jersey

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

Any property owned by the two of you is potentially subject to being reached by creditors (including a judgment creditor--i.e. someone who sued and won, getting a judgment in his/her favor) if the amount exceeds the insurance coverage and is not otherwise paid. Only your husband's share should be reachable--i.e., in a joint bank account, the amount or proportion of money contributed by him; his "half" of a jointy owned house, or possibly a share of a house in your name IF it can be established that he provided the money (or to the extent he provided the money) for it. At this point, if he already had the accident, separating, trying to seggregate assets, etc. would most likely not help; that would be seen as an after-the-fact attrempt to hide assets or defraud creditors, and could be set aside by a court.


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