Marriage and Student Debt


What’s the main cause for divorce here in the USA?  Why, marriage, of course!!

All kidding aside, the majority of marriage failure is tied to one factor – finances.  Specifically, the stress tied to a couple’s/family’s financial well-being.  Marriage means learning to handle money as a team.  And, as many men have learned, it means the wife has the reins!

Marriage today likely means addressing how to handle repayment of student debt, as one or both parties to the marriage may have such debt.  The big question – are you responsible for the other’s student debt?

Quick answer – no.  Unless the loan is taken during marriage and the debt is co-signed, whether new or refinanced.  At that point, you’re equally responsible for repayment.  Living in a community property state could also result in liability for the other’s debt.

In fact, there are several ways student loans can affect finances…

  1. Student debt and credit scores.  Upon marriage, credit histories do not merge; your credit history and score is yours.  However, they can be affected if a so-signed debt is involved.
  • Student debt and taxes.  While the marriage tax break can be seen as a positive, a combined income can result in elimination of the student loan interest deduction.
  • Monthly student debt payments.  If either of you are on income-driven repayment plans, marriage could change the amount you pay on the loan, perhaps even the amount you pay in taxes.

Whatever you do, maintain communication.  Discuss your debt regularly, follow the plan, and reduce your stress.

If you might be interested in the best program for handling repayment of student debt, contact us to schedule a no-obligation meeting.  We look forward to assisting you, our spouse, and your family.