Married residents in Texas who separate or divorce their spouses have many things to contend with in the process of extricating themselves from a previously shared life. The need to identify future ownership of marital assets is a topic that often gets a lot of attention at this time. However, it is important to remember that debts as well as assets must be split in a divorce.

CreditCards.com recommends that divorcing spouses make it a priority to find a way to settle all joint debt prior to completing their divorce. This will allow both parties to walk away from the marriage without being bound together by a financial responsibility to a lender or other creditor.

SoFi explains that because Texas is a community property state, spouses should not assume that their partner will be solely responsible for any debt in their name only. If a debt was incurred during the marriage, both people could be liable for repayment even if only one person’s name is on the account. The date of separation often becomes very important when determining who is responsible for which debt.

Cancelling credit cards and finding ways to pay down debt prior to completion of a divorce may help to prevent future credit problems. If a joint debt remains intact and one person is identified in the divorce decree as responsible for it, the other party could be pursued for repayment if the first person fails to pay. Missed or late payments could still be reported on both spouse’s credit reports.