Let’s say that when you get married, your spouse has $10,000 in credit card debt. You have some savings built up, so when you get married, you decide to use some of your premarital savings and pay off the debt. This lessens your spouse’s debt load, and of course helps with the budget. The minimum payments are gone. You’re married now, so this helps both of you. As a
married couple living in the same household, this is probably a smart thing to do.
But, now let’s say it’s ten years later and you are getting a divorce. You want to be compensated for paying off your spouse’s premarital debt with your premarital savings. Do you have a valid claim?
There are always exceptions, but as a general rule, the answer is “No.” When a Court divides a marital estate at the time of a divorce, it does so based upon the existing assets and debts. You choose to spend your money how you spend your money during the marriage. The Court will not go back in time and compensate you for paying off the debt. Plus, you had an interest in paying off the debt. By eliminating the debt and the monthly payments, the marital estate benefited. That’s why you did it. Your spouse’s income could then be directed towards the marital estate, and not towards premarital debt.
So, try to look at it this way if you are regretting your decision to pay off your spouse’s premarital debt.
Contact Beyer & Simonson
If you are facing divorce and any of the divorce-related issues such as spousal maintenance, child support, child custody, property division, or domestic abuse matters, you need our experienced Minneapolis divorce attorneys to help you. Contact Beyer & Simonson in Edina, Minnesota today at (952) 303-6007.