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I opened up a credit card in my husbands name n he didn't know bout, he knows bout it now can he sue me and get me in trouble

Eaton Rapids, MI |
Filed under: Divorce

In 2005 I opened this card and he had no knowledge of it.I filed for individual bankruptcy last year without him knowin and no longer am an authorized user for the card cause I noted it in the bankruptcy. I filed for divorce sept. 2011 but we still live together n tryin to save the marriage. He now knows bout the card and is furious and says he will not pay it n says he's going to hold me accountable for the debt. He says he got councelled by a lawyer and told me that's illegal and he can get me for fraud and sue me for the 27000 debt. Can he actually do that? He also never contested anything in the divorce and never responded and has no lawyer. He's now in the process of talking with the collection agency and the credit card co. At this point can he make a case against me or not?

Attorney Answers 3

Posted

Yes, not only can you be held liable for the debt, you can also go to jail, and frankly you should! Not only did you lie on an application for credit, you committed Identity Theft. Even though you may THINK you are no longer liable for the debt due to your bankruptcy, banckruptcy will not protect you from this intentional criminal act. You stole over $27,000 from the credit card company and they won't just let that slide. You should not be asking questions on the internet, you should be sitting in the office of a criminal defense attorney because you are going to need one.

Another note: I am a BIG proponent of trying to save marriages, I really am, BUT you are not trying to save your marriage, you are trying to save your butt! In order to save your marriage, honesty is required and you simply have none in your's. I hope your marriage can be saved but it will take a lot of work on your part and he will really have to love you a lot to simply pay this $27,000 crime you committed against him! Good Luck!

The comments listed here do not create an attorney-client relationship. The comments are for informational purposes only and are not to be considered legal advice. This attorney is only licensed in Michigan and does not give legal advice in any other state. All comments are to be considered conversational information and you should not rely on these comments as legal advice or in place of retaining an attorney of our own. The comments here are based solely on what you have provided and therefore are general in nature and with more specific facts or details a different answer or outcome could result. The legal system is not a perfect science and this attorney does not guarantee any outcome.

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Posted

Probably, you could potentially be charged with a criminal offense.

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Posted

My information says a "qualified no" he can't. I would imagine the $27,000 debt was used to benefit the both of you. He wasn't aware that you opened the account from what I understand, but if he derived a benefit from the debt is controlling. So, since the card was in his name it doesn't get taken care of in your personal bankruptcy and it is his now considered martial debt. Do you and your husband share finances? Do you work and why didn't you put the card in your name. If he benefited from the $27,000 he is probably going to be responsible. Did you make any payments?

So, unless there is a prenuptial agreement income and debt is shared as marital when you divorce (if you do). In the divorce proceeding he could argue that you should be responsible for the $27,000.

From a practical perspective, he could also contact the credit card company and say this $27,000 was all "unauthorized" and see what the credit card company says, but he has to notify them within 60 days of notice regarding the debt. Did you forge his signature? When the credit card company replies they will respond in a few different ways: "yes" we agree it was unauthorized use and wipe it out if you jump through hoops (affidavit) (highly unlikely); "yes" we agree it may been unauthorized use, but to bad it was your wife - so it's marital debt (likely); "No" we disagree this was unauthorized use because the statements were sent to your address and you (husband) should be aware your financial condition.

As a caveat, anyone can sue anyone for just about anything, the success of the litigation is the question. If he decides he wants to sue you, I think he is going to be hard pressed to find an attorney who will take this case, other than a divorce lawyer, because if he sues you over this the stress of a lawsuit between husband (plaintiff) and wife (defendant) will surely destroy the marriage. You have to ask yourself some tough questions.

You guys have bigger problems. Communication and candor for one. The second issue is fiscal responsibility.

Good luck.

Legal disclaimer: I am not your attorney and we have no attorney/client relationship. This response is submitted for informational purposes only. This is not legal advice, nor is it intended to be taken as such. Anyone considering the above referenced response and should always consult directly with an attorney within your jurisdiction before taking any action based on this, or any other information. This information is provided without any cost and therefore is worth what you paid for it. Again this information does not create any privileged attorney/client relationship and you are cautioned about information you convey to any person in a public forum.

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