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Wife is a compulsive debtor

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dwflo

Guest
What is the name of your state? Illinois-

Shortly after we married, it became appearent that my wife could not handle money. As a result, we have had separate finances for the past 10 years. She 'binge' spends where she runs up thousand$ on credit and then can't afford to pay it back and doesn't manage the debt (unopened bank statements hidden all over). She also writes bad checks occasionally (police showing up at our door).

I used to try to pay her debts, but I now realize that this is not helping her really. I manage all our household finances (mortgage, car payments, etc etc). She holds an average paying job in which she does not contribute any money to the 'household'.

She managed to stay 'clean' a few years ago, enabling us to purchase a new house together, but since I have stopped paying her creditors, she has totally trashed her credit (not payed dozen creditors for over four months). I estimate she owes 14K $. Also some bad checks.

I have near perfect credit, have not posessed or used a credit card in 7 years, have a good income and never made a late payment.

My question is: what options do I have to protect our 9yo daughter, myself, assets, etc? What would happen if we divorced? How can I simply even refi- my mortgage?
 


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gottago

Guest
It sounds like you need a good divorce attorney....before it's too late and all your money and credit are gone.

Be very careful...these message boards are littered with horror stories from people like you who didn't do anything until it was too late.
 
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dwflo

Guest
I understand I would need a good attorney if it comes down to divorce, I'm am curious what to expect in such a matter. I don't really know anyone who has been in a similair situation as this.

Hopefully things won't get to that point (she is in DA and is using a credit counseling service for debt repayment). Her problems run much deeper than just mismanaged credit unfortunately...
 

I AM ALWAYS LIABLE

Senior Member
dwflo said:
I understand I would need a good attorney if it comes down to divorce, I'm am curious what to expect in such a matter. I don't really know anyone who has been in a similair situation as this.

Hopefully things won't get to that point (she is in DA and is using a credit counseling service for debt repayment). Her problems run much deeper than just mismanaged credit unfortunately...

My response:

No one can discuss the "what if's" or your "curiosity" with you because your statement, "I'm am curious what to expect in such a matter" is too vague. We don't know you. We couldn't begin to tell you what to expect with any specificity because we don't know your financial situation, or anything else about you. One person's "expectation" may be wholly different from someone else's. Depending on which area of human action - - legal or psychological - - and specific facts of which avenue you wish to discuss and pursue - - will determine your "expectations."

On the surface, however, you'll either need a consultation with a Family Law attorney (who can tell you your "legal" expectations), or a psychological counselor (who can tell you your "emotional" expectations), or you may need both.

Good luck.

IAAL
 
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dwflo

Guest
I understand its difficult to offer advice without more specific information, however a forum such as this is probably best for addressing individual issues - mine are so numerous I don't know where to start...

Anyone know if in Illinois can the financial actions of a spouse affect the credit of their partner? How would her debt affect me in divorce proceedings? A divorce would be the result of her out-of-control debting, and since I can prove I have had no part in her actions, why should I have any liability? I'm not sure if Illinois is a 'community property' state. I don't think so.
 
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Ladynred

Senior Member
IL is not a community property state, so there's no liability there. If all her debts are soley in HER name, then you have NO liability for them at all and it would not affect your credit history. The only risk that you could face would be something in the way of a divorce settlement, where an attorney for her might try to stick you with paying for her bad spending habits. That's where your attorney would have to be sharp to avoid such a raw deal.
 

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