Can my husband’s creditors come after my assets?

UPDATED: Sep 11, 2011

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Can my husband’s creditors come after my assets?

I own a vacation property with 2 siblings. I owned it before my marriage. While married, my husband purchased a commercial property that is in his name only. He has rented the property under a rental agreement with purchase option within 2 years, The renter is running a stripper business and carrying rental property and liability insurance. If the renter is sued for any reason, and the suit named my husband as property owner, can they also come after the vacation home that I own with my siblings, but not with my husband?

Asked on September 11, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, Pennsylvania


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

The general rule is that one spouse is not legally responsible to pay for another spouse's debts; therefore your assets are protected. Exceptions would be if you agreed to be legally obligated for such a debt (not applicable in this case), you reside in a community property state (you don't), or the debt has been incurred  or bills that are necessary for the maintenance of the household ( and such is no the case here).  

If a judgment is obtained by a creditor against your husband his assets can be garnished. However, this includes jointly held non-exempt assets. So keep as much as you can separate from his (i.e. keep your assets in your name, including bank account to the extent possible). 

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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