Losing Spouse/Parent

questions & answers

Question: Am I responsible for my husband's credit card debt? He is the primary person on the account. The credit card company closed the account when they were notified of his passing. There is no money to pay the bill, so am I still responsible for this debt?

Answer: Debts can be passed on to living spouses. Arizona is a community property state (A.R.S. 25-211). Any property that is gained, with a few exceptions, during a marriage is normally considered community property. Even loans and credit cards, as well as any debts that may come from them, are considered a responsibility of both spouses if one spouse cannot pay off the debts owed. However, Arizona laws also state that the separate property of one spouse is not liable for the separate debts of the other spouse; community property is liable for the community debts. Also, community property is only liable to the extent of property that the spouse incurring the debts brings into the relationship, this means, the amount of property that they would have had it they were single (A.R.S. 25-215). Arizona laws define separate property as real or personal property that is gained before marriage, property that is gained as a gift during marriage, and/or property that is gained after serving a petition for dissolution of marriage, legal separation or annulment (A.R.S. 25-213). To find out how the law applies to a specific situation, contact an attorney directly.

QUESTIONS

  • Am I responsible for my husband's credit card debt? He is the primary person on the account. The credit card company closed the account when they were notified of his passing. There is no money to pay the bill, so am I still responsible for this debt?

STORIES

  • Age discrimination in the workplace. . .
  • He told me that I could actually get all the money I needed by using my home as collateral. . .
  • He told me that I could actually get all the money I needed by using my home as collateral. . .

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  • State Bar of Arizona
    www.azbar.org
  • Maricopa County Bar
    www.maricopabar.org
    Referral number 602-257-4434
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    www.pimacountybar.org
    Referral number 520-623-4625
  • National Domestic Violence Hotline
    800-799-7233
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    866-553-0893
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