Sharing credit cards is a natural outcome of combining finances when you get married. Unfortunately, those joint credit cards can be a big complication when you file for divorce.
Not only can they affect other areas of property division, but they can put you at personal financial risk. There are two important moves that those considering divorce can make to protect themselves from the potential financial devastation that the abuse of joint accounts could cause.
Close or freeze the accounts right away
In some cases, such as when you have reason to suspect immediate financial reprisal by your ex, you may be able to convince the courts to freeze your financial assets. Otherwise, you may have to reach out to individual creditors to notify them of your divorce filing and ask them to stop any future charges.
Keeping accurate records of what transactions occurred after your separation can also help because you may be able to exclude those charges from property division proceedings.
Leave nothing to chance regarding payments
Your ex, in a bitter attempt to punish you, could torpedo their credit score just to limit your financial stability. They could choose to stop paying the credit cards that they promised to cover, which is why you need to actively protect yourself.
Asking for responsibility for the cards and more assets so you can pay them in full or requiring the repayment of the cards as part of the process of refinancing your home during property division are both strategies that help ensure your ex won’t be in a position to hurt your finances or credit score after the divorce.
Understanding the right approach to complex property division matters in a New York divorce will help ensure the best possible outcome given your circumstances.