Whatto do if my husband took out credit card in my name and now he wants a divorce?

UPDATED: May 23, 2012

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Whatto do if my husband took out credit card in my name and now he wants a divorce?

My husband took out a credit card on-line in my name only 6 years ago. This was done without my knowledge. He is divorcing me now and I found out that this credit card debt is now owned by a collection agency and they are trying to collect from me. It’s not mine. Do I have any options in the divorce to have him be responsible? He is agreeable to do this.

Asked on May 23, 2012 under Family Law, Texas


B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If he's agreeable, you have a fairly simple option-- you can agree through a final order for him to obtain a loan to payoff the credit card so as to get the debt paid off--- so that you can close it out.  If that's an option, it certainly is the easiest.  If that's not an option, there are other potential options-- they are just a little more challenging.  The first is to ask for relief from the divorce court by way of an unequal distribution of the community asset.  Many people think that property division has to be 50-50, but if one spouses has defrauded the other-- you can ask for more to go pay off the debt.  Your second option will depend on when he got the card-- which is challenging the validity of the debt.  If he got the card while ya'll were married, then your challenge will be harder because Texas is a community property state, and for the most part a community debt state.  Which means that even if the card had been in his name, they could still come after you for any debt accrued during the marriage.  However, if he got the card prior to your marriage, you could dispute the validity of the debt.  The third option is to potentially pursue legal charges which would include debit card abuse, false statement to obtain credit, fraudulent use of identifying information, and outright theft.  These are just potentential offeses.  Which ones, if any, will depend on other factors that would have to be developed through an investigation.

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