If my former spouse’s bankruptcy includes jointly owned property. how does this affect me?

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If my former spouse’s bankruptcy includes jointly owned property. how does this affect me?

During our marriage, we financed a condo and leased a car. In our divorce, he got the car and condo. But, they remained under both names because he wasn’t able to refinance. When he turned in the lease, he had mileage overage of about $2,000. The condo is now 60 days past due. He has just informed me that he’s filing for bankruptcy and including both debts in his filing. How does this affect me? Will the lease debt and the condo be transferred to me? What happens if I do nothing?

Asked on February 7, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, Michigan

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

You need to consult with a bankruptcy attorney immediately, bringing with you all paperwork relating to the disposition of the assets (e.g. who got them, on what terms, when). As matters stand, he is a part or joint owner of these assets and therefore they are assets of his to include under the bankruptcy, which means they could be foreclosed or repossesed during the bankruptcy, among other things. It also means that if payments on the condo (the mortgage?) are late or in default, it will be reported against your credit as well. And finally, depending on the exact circumstances, the creditors may be able look to you for payment of any debts relating to the car and condo. You need professional guidance and representation on how to sort this out, since at present, you are  very vulnerable.


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