Marriages can end for a number of reasons. One of the most common contributory factors for marital problems is disagreements regarding money. If you and your spouse have different philosophies about money and how to manage it, this can cause deep-rooted issues, and can ultimately lead to the break down of a marriage.
In addition to money disagreements having the potential to contribute to divorce, these disagreements can lead to financial concerns and divorce complications. This is particularly true if you have been struggling with debt during your marriage.
If you want to divorce your spouse because of the debt that they have incurred during the marriage, it is likely that you will be concerned about how this debt will be divided when you have filed for divorce. It is important that you understand how the law works when it comes to asset and debt division in Washington state.
Marital property laws in Washington
Most states tend to follow equitable distribution law. However, Washington is a community property state, meaning that assets and debts that are considered marital property will be divided equally between spouses. This is very important to note, especially if you are worried about being left with a large amount of debt after your divorce that you don’t believe you deserve.
When is debt classed as marital property?
Only debt that is classed as marital property will be subject to division under marital property law. Debts that are considered to be marital property are those that arise during the length of the marriage. However, there are some exceptions to this rule. Debts acquired before the marriage will not be subject to division.
How can I limit the effects of community property in my divorce?
It is a great idea to sit down with your spouse to try and allocate debts before filing for divorce. If your spouse has incurred credit card debts, for example, you may be able to negotiate with them and convince them to take responsibility for their actions.
It is important to protect yourself from debts that your divorcing spouse has incurred during your marriage, especially in community property states such as Washington. Make sure that you understand your rights and to take early action.