If I am about to marry someone who has pre-existing tax debt, am I liable for that debt?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

If I am about to marry someone who has pre-existing tax debt, am I liable for that debt?

He owes about 4 years worth of taxes to federal and state. I own the home we are in, he is not on the deed.

Asked on August 14, 2015 under Family Law, Maryland

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

You do not become directly liable for his debt: an existing debt does not transfer to a person because of marriage. Clearly, though, it can affect you indirectly:

1) His own personal (non-marital) assets could be targetted, reducing the assets he might otherwise have available for joint or marital use.

2) His wages can potentially be garnished.

3) Creditors might mistakenly go after your assets, forcing you to deal with the situation.

4) His share or portion of marital assets can be targetted (e.g. the money he puts into a joint bank account).

5) If the two of you seek to do some major purchase or investment (real estate, car, etc.) both of your credit reports are typically checked; if his is worse due to the debts, that will affect your joint credit-worthiness.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption