How are student loans decided in a divorce?

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How are student loans decided in a divorce?

My husband and I have taken out several loans to pay for our 3 children to attend college. Now we are getting divorced. All the loans are in my name as he has very poor credit. How would this debit be split legally? He agrees he is responsible for half.

Asked on September 8, 2012 under Family Law, New Jersey


Brad Micklin / The Micklin Law Group

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Your children's student loans should be divided in equitable distribution just as any other debt would be, such as credit cards or car loans. Equitable distribution is the principle that divides assets and debts. This does not mean equal distribution but, instead, is determined by the court after considering a number of factors. Some of these factors include, but are not limited to, the length of the marriage, the contributions of both parties to the acquisition of assets and debts, the ability of the parents to earn once divorced, childcare responsibilities of either parent come, any other assets available to contribute to support, and any other factor that the court considers relevant.

Despite these issues, the equitable distribution of assets and debts in a divorce case are commonly equal because there rarely reasons to deviate.  Some common reasons to deviate are unequal contribution to the acquisition of assets and debts, a grossly disproportionate ability to earn support once divorced and other reasons deemed equitable by the court.  As such, this debt will either be equally divided between the 2 of you or proportionally divided between you 2 if your incomes are significantly different from one another.

If you want to speak with an experienced attorney who is familiar with these areas of law, call us at 973-562-0100.  Our firm is concentrated in family law and estate planning case.

Good luck.

Brad M. Micklin, Esq.

The Micklin Law Group

187 Washington Ave., Suite 2F

Nutley, NJ 07110


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Under the laws of all states in this coutnry when there is a marital dissolution the assets and debts  of the marriage are typically divided equlally between the spouses in terms of dollars and cents where a certain spouse may be required to pay the entirety of one particular debt and another the entirety of another.

The court usually does not require a 50/50 split of the payment of the marital debts since this could cause issues later on between the divorcing parties where one may pay his or her share in full and the other does not.

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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