Is My Husband Responsible for My Student Loan?

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Student loans are a significant long-term financial obligation. At the end of your educational career, you may owe hundreds of thousands of dollars, and you must gradually pay back your loans. If you fail to do so, the federal government can take collection action against you. If you live in a community property state or your husband cosigned your student loan application, he can be held equally responsible for your student loan if you default.

Community Property State

If you live in a community property state, both members of the marriage are considered responsible for all debts incurred during the course of the marriage. Thus, in community property states, your husband is equally responsible for your student loan debt if you take out the loan after you get married. As a result, your loan providers can take collection action against him if you do not pay your loan back as agreed.

Cosigned Loan

Student loan companies usually ask for a cosigner if a borrower has poor credit so they can reduce the risk of losing their investment if you default on the loan. Cosigners are equally liable for the loan and usually have to have good credit. If your husband cosigns a loan application on your behalf, he is equally responsible for the loan and may face financial consequences if you default on the loan.

Executor of Estate

If you die before paying off your student loans and your husband is the executor of your estate, he may have to use estate funds to pay off your student loans or a portion of them. However, your husband is not personally responsible for your student loans in this situation. If the estate does not have sufficient funds to pay off your loans in full, the student loan company must write off your loans as a bad debt.

Considerations

Student loans are subject to different laws than most other debt. Among other things, the consequences of defaulting on student loans are more severe. Student loan companies can demand the entire loan payment at once, garnish your wages or put a lien on your property to collect the total amount you owe, and most student loans are not eligible for discharge via bankruptcy. Therefore, you should make every effort to pay student loans on time each month, including talking to your creditor immediately if you are having financial difficulties. Your husband should not cosign student loan applications unless he is sure both of you will be able to pay the loans back.

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