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Student loans in a divorce decree do not matter to the lender

You and your spouse split up, but you do it on relatively good terms. In fact, your ex even agrees to help you pay back your student loans. You put in the divorce decree that you will each be responsible for 50 percent of the payment every month.

Perhaps your ex doesn't even do this out of the kindness of his or her heart. Your ex wants another asset -- like your home -- and agrees to take on part of the debt to offset the difference.

Regardless of the reason, you get it in writing. Does that mean the lender is going to call your ex if he or she stops making those payments?

It usually does not. Are you named on the loan by yourself? If so, then all the lender cares about is that document. Lenders are not bound by divorce decrees and do not really care what you put in them. All that matters is the agreement you made to pay off that loan. You still owe them that money.

So, if your ex pays for the next year and then stops, you will need to start making those full payments. If you do not, the lender simply sees that as you shorting them 50 percent of the monthly bill, and your credit score is going to see the impact -- not your ex's.

This does not mean your ex cannot help you pay, but it just shows why it's so important to really understand your responsibilities and obligations after divorce. Make sure you know exactly where you stand, legally speaking.

Source: The College Investor, "What Happens To Student Loans In A Divorce?," Zina Kumok, accessed May 16, 2018

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