STUDENT LOAN & DIVORCE: CAN YOU GET YOUR EX TO HELP YOU PAY FOR THEM WHEN YOU DIVORCE?
Divorce & student loans are often a big question by people getting divorced. First things first: If you took out the loans prior to marriage, students loans will forever be your separate property when you divorce. If part of the loans were taken out during marriage, that part could be considered marital property.
What the loans were actually used for could also be dispositive. If you took out living expenses and your spouse helped to eat and wear the money, it could be seen as a marital debt vs if the loans only paid for the tuition and you did not even get a degree in the end that in any way helped your spouse.
Divorce & student loans depends on where you live. That is, how students loans are treated also depend on which state you live in when you get divorced.
But what if you took out the loans before you married your spouse but after taking out the loans you got married and your spouse helped you pay for the loans for years? Is this a commingling of a separate property with marital property? Did your spouse essentially turn a separate property into marital property when they took it upon themselves to express this level of generosity towards you during marriage by paying for your student loans?
So how do you protect yourself before divorce is even an issue when it comes to student loans? Prenups and postnups, or common law marriages, quite frankly. Do not marry someone with huge student loans unless you have a clear agreement. Because even if the loans were pre-marriage, let’s say there is a law or medical degree that comes from it and you are benefiting from that degree during the marriage, then arguably you should help pay for the debt – especially if when you divorce you expect spousal support that comes from that degree (and debt!)