If you didn't sign the loan, you are not responsible to pay the debt. I have always been under the impression that responsibility for a student loan is eliminated upon death, but if I am wrong, the debt may be paid or eliminated if you have a probate. I think consulting with a probate lawyer in your community would be a good idea. Hope this perspective helps!
You have no obligation to assume the debt and despite calls from a debt collector or others do not sign any documents without having them reviewed by an attorney. Generally any liability your husband had would end with his death. You need to consult an attorney regarding the matter. The possibility does exist that if your husband had any probate assets that these may have to be used to satisfy the debt.
This could get tricky as the other attorneys mentioned depending on what assets your husband owed at his death. You probably should speak with an attorney regarding his assets and other debts and how you should proceed as, while the debt collector may not be able to come after you directly for repayment of the debt, they still may be able to come after any assets transferred to you after your husband's death or co-owned by you. Even if this is the case, you likely could negotiate with the debt collector, but you want to assess your liability risk before you start making them any offers. Have you send the debt collector a death certificate as well. You should do so and ask them to stop calling you in the meantime. I hope this helps.
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Colorado has a statute that provides for liability for a spouse for debts incurred for family purposes during a marriage. That is a narrow claim and not much recent case law, but I see it alleged from time to time. You should visit with counsel, both on the probate issue and upon this debt collection issue. Even if there is liability, the difficulty it presents should allow for a decent settlement...if a review of the facts indicates the possibility of liability. Good luck!
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