My Ex-Wife is Not Paying My Debt She Promised to Pay in Our Divorce Decree. – William


“Dear Steve,

I was divorced in 2003 and my ex wife was responsible for an existing credit card that is solely in my name. In our divorce decree, it was stated that she was responsible for this debt. Over the years, she has been delinquent on occasion and most recently she is delinquent again. She earns a substantial income and I’m certain can leverage a loan or a balance transfer but she refuses. This is impacting my credit score and I am currently buying a home.

If I pay off the remaining balance on this account, can I actively pursue her for that balance? The credit card company shows no mercy as I am their target and they could care less that she is responsible for this debt.


Dear William,

This is an unfortunate situation I see all the time. People don’t seem to understand that when you divorce your spouse you don’t divorce your creditors.

In your case your ex-wife is trashing your credit by not paying some debts in your name, as she agreed. Her agreement to repay that debt is an understanding between your and her. Ultimately you remain solely liable for debt only in your name.

If payments are not made on debt that you are contractually responsible for with the credit card company, guess who that hurts, you.

Your solution here is to go back to your divorce lawyer and see what court action can be taken to remind her or legally encourage her to pay you back.


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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.
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2 thoughts on “My Ex-Wife is Not Paying My Debt She Promised to Pay in Our Divorce Decree. – William”

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  2. What happens in a divorce where each spouse has separate credit cards and never had anything joint. Can you still be held responsible for the other persons debt?


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