There’s no question that divorce impacts many areas of your life: family dynamics, social relationships, even your credit score. In fact, 54% of women and 42% of men reported their divorce negatively impacted their credit scores.
Why is that? Divorce can change your financial habits and obligations. Joint debt accumulated during the marriage—mortgages, credit cards, car loans—is considered by creditors to be the obligation of both parties to which the credit was extended. In a divorce, the court may decide which party is responsible for which debt, but that doesn’t change the creditor’s expectations. When the responsible party misses a payment either by accident or out of spite, the lender to whom the payment is owed still considers both parties responsible. Closing all joint accounts is not necessarily the answer as that can lower your credit score as well.
There are ways you can minimize the impact your divorce may have on your credit rating, however. To learn how read, “Does getting a divorce affect your credit score?”