Joint accounts: What happens after divorce?

Joint accounts: What happens after divorce?There are many major decisions to make when getting married, one of which involves signing up for a joint credit card. This is something each partner must think about seriously, as doing so can affect both parties' credit scores.

One consideration to keep in mind is the probability of divorce. In the event that the marriage does dissolve, the credit cards are still in both persons' names, and both people are thus still responsible for payments. If one party does not pay a bill on time, the credit scores of both will be affected negatively.

Ex-spouses can prevent this from happening by transferring the balances of the joint credit card to an account with only their name or their former partner's. Otherwise, the lender will hold both people responsible for the amount owed.

Consumers may want to take state laws into consideration as well. Even if divorced, some states require couples to pay off all debt accumulated during their marriage, even if it is only in one person's name.

These are important factors husbands and wives should consider before taking the plunge into getting a joint account. A negatively affected FICO score could lead to trouble securing a car loan or mortgage in the future.