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Sue, Family Law Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 171
Experience:  Family Law litigator for over 35 years
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My ex of 9 years is not paying on a credit card I co-signed

Customer Question

My ex of 9 years is not paying on a credit card I co-signed for with a credit union. In the divorce the card was assigned to her since its in her name. I am not supposed to have access to it or any records of it. The credit union did not show up at any of the hearings on division of assets or liabilities. Now the credit union wants me to pay it and so far I have refused. I offered to go back to court on behalf of the credit union with their written permission to represent their position ( they declined). I suggested they go talk to the judge (with my permission - they declined). If I do pay them anything that money now becomes income for my ex since we have no relationship - can I require the credit union to step up and admit that arrangement and provide evidence of Federal tax withholding? I could then write off income I pay her as an expense. My other alternative is to 1) have the credit union write off the entire debt 2) then purchase the debt from them 3) write if off for tax purposes and 4) notify the IRS of the forgiven debt so that she now owes taxes on it. As part of such a deal I would ask them to erase this from my credit record and agree not to publicize this alternative. Its only one account and does not appear to impact my credit in any way that I can tell even though its overdue 90 days and often past due apparently. The credit union seems to think the divorce judge has zero authority and I disagree: he/she most certainly DOES have authority here to divide assets and liabilities. I have pointed out that the credit union collects co-signer relationship information for a reason – it matters since each type of relationship i.e. marriage, domestic partnerships, or business partnership carries potential ‘baggage’ if dissolved, as they have discovered. Thank you.
JA: Because family law varies from place to place, can you tell me what state this is in?
Customer: WA
JA: Has anything been filed or reported?
Customer: such as?
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: no
Submitted: 3 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Sue replied 3 months ago.

Hello, I am a licensed attorney with over 35 years’ experience in family law. I am here to help you today. I’d like to review your question for a few minutes, type your answer and then I’ll be right back.


Expert:  Sue replied 3 months ago.

This is general information and not legal advice. No attorney-client relationship is formed. This is for educational purposes only.

You can file a motion to enforce the decree, asking for an order 1) that your ex promptly pay that debt, and 2) that she take your name off the joint account to avoid future liability.

In the meantime, you can politely decline all the credit unions entreaties for payment. The worst they can do is negatively impact your credit score.

Does this make sense to you?


Expert:  Sue replied 3 months ago.

Can I assist you further?

Would you please choose a rating?

Thank you,