Are You Responsible for A Family Member’s Credit Card Debt?

Inherited credit card debtsIf you click on any of the advice columns related to family relationships, you will discover several queries about relationships that got strained due to money. Various members of a family put each other to shame talking about the financial decisions they did not approve of. Poorer relatives do not like the wealthy ones because they are not generous with them, especially, for repaying credit card debts. In most cases, the eagerness of a family member to insert the chip or swipe the card doesn’t affect your credit score. However, here are some situations where you will be directly responsible for the credit card debts caused by others.

Never get fooled by the puppy dog eyes: You may have added another member of your family as one of the authorized users of your account. If this person goes on to make some expensive buys by using your credit card, you have no one else but yourself to blame. An authorized user gets his or her separate card and their purchases are charged to your account. Failing to make the repayment, and paying off for the purchases doesn’t affect the credit score of this person. All the responsibility lies with you. Sometimes a young adult family member may be asking to be added as an authorized user. Take into consideration the credit card debt he or she may develop.

It is easier to divorce the spouse than their credit card debt: Credit card debt has been an important factor in the decision to get a divorce in the case of many people. Although you disapprove of your spouse using your credit card for buying things, it is not sufficient. Your disapproval will not hold back the court from placing the responsibility of the debt on your shoulders. The court will consider all the debts at the time of the marriage as marital debts. It will not matter whose name was on the loan agreement. In Florida, a court will consider the financial situation of the couple independently, before deciding about the verdict.

Inherited credit card debts: In almost all cases, if a person owing money for the credit card debt dies, his family will not inherit the debt. Although the credit card company can claim the money after the estate has settled, they have no chance of pursuing the credit card debt. However, if you and the deceased were joint borrowers, there will be an exception. It means that you and the deceased both will have your names on the credit card account. In case you were just an authorized user, you will not inherit this debt.

Some credit card companies might be getting in touch with you in the pursuit of some credit card debts. If these debts were racked up by other members of your family, get in touch with a debt lawyer. If you live in Tampa, FL area, one of the best go-to places for this work is Weller Legal Group. The experts can help you before the problem gets passed on to the next generation.

Picture Credit: Crello