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I’m Being Sued by My Ex-Husband For a Debt in His Name. This Can’t Be Right! – Michelle


“Dear Steve,

My ex husband is stating he is sueing me for debt that is in his name that was stuck to me in the divorce.

I have paid thousands of dollars just to pay a lawyer to represent me in a child custody battle over the past year and a half.

He said my wages are going to be garnished for the rest of my life and knowing him, he will try and do just that.

I work straight commission in real estate and the market fluctuates on a daily basis as do my checks from my employer.

I’ve tried contacting there creditors and they wont even talk to me becasue the lines of credit aren’t in my name. I’ve tried to set up a payment plan with them with no luck.

Can my ex husband sue me and garnish my paycheck for debt that is his name that was given to me in our divorce?


Dear Michelle,

It sounds to me like you agreed to assume the debt as part of your divorce agreement. In that case your husband can’t transfer his responsibility for the debt from his creditor to you, instead he in essence becomes a creditor of yours.

From what you have shared, he is apparently going after you personally for the debt you agreed to pay, but are not paying him. He still has to pay his creditor so he is trying to collect his contractual obligation from you.

The irony here is that he is doing exactly what I often advise people to do when their spouse fails to honor the divorce agreement. His course of action is his only recourse against you.

You should talk to a local bankruptcy attorney and see if you could break his demand against you with bankruptcy.

The new bankruptcy law made non-support obligations from a divorce or separation non-dischargeable in a chapter 7 bankruptcy if the discharge of the obligation would harm the spouse to whom the obligation is owed more than it would harm the person who owes it, your ex-spouse. 11 U.S.C. 523(a)(15). A debt that is non-dischargeable means that your ex-spouse is still responsible for it. – Source:


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About the author

Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.


  • There were no promised payments to him in our decree. The devision of our marital debts, and the filing of individual bankruptcy, was part of our divorce decree.



    • Michelle,

      Hum, odd one. You’ll need to speak to a lawyer, maybe your divorce attorney is the best place to start. Please update me on what you learn. I’d really like to know.


  • My ex and I divided our debts during our divorce. Each of us filed bankrupcy. Mine was a chapter 7 and my ex filed a 13. Now my ex has informed me that he is going to sue me for half of what he had to repay in his ch 13. Can he do this? I don’t see how…I took care of my half of our marital debt.

    Michelle in Colorado

    • Michelle,

      I think it depends on if you defaulted on promised payments to him in you divorce decree. You really need to consult with an attorney licensed in your state about this. Just keep in mind that bankruptcy only breaks the obligation between you and your creditor.

      Keep me posted on what happens.


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