Am I responsible for my girlfriend’s medical debt if we marry?

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Am I responsible for my girlfriend’s medical debt if we marry?

My girlfriend was in a serious accident about 1 year ago. She was not employed and she did not have medical or auto insurance. Her debt is approximately $180,000. Will I be responsible for her debt if we marry?

Asked on February 28, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, New Jersey

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

No you will not.  There is no spousal liability for pre-marital debt (unless of course you were also on the debt or in some way agreed to assume this debt).  However, that having been said, once you are married if your wife's creditor sues her an wins, a judgment will be awarded against her. At that point her assets as well as any joint assets (to the extent that they are non-exempt) will be at risk.  So keep your bank accounts and such separate.


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