If my wife accumulated individual credit card debt, am I liable or responsible to pay for the debt?

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If my wife accumulated individual credit card debt, am I liable or responsible to pay for the debt?

We live in a non-community property state.

Asked on July 21, 2015 under Family Law, Delaware

Answers:

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

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

In most states, a spouse is only liable for credit card debt if the obligation is in their name. Therefore, if the credit card is only in your wife's name, you are not liable for that debt. However, to the extent that you have jointly owned assets, then the credit card company can still go after your wife’s interest in that property.

If the debt is for a joint credit card in both your names, then you and your wife are equally liable for it. In addition, if you are a co-signer on her credit card (even if it is not a joint account), you are still liable.

Note: The rules are somewhat different in community property states.


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