Property Law: Are School Loans Subject To Marital Property Division?

divorce lawyer Daniel ExnerQuestion:

How does marital property division treat student loans?

I acquired personal property by using student loans, of which I am solely responsible for.

Does my soon-to-be-ex-wife have any property rights to the items I bought with federal loan money?

Answer:

While I am not licensed to practice law in your jurisdiction, I can provide you with general divorce help to your marital property division question.

The answer will vary depending on if your state is a community property state or an equitable division state.

The state I practice in (Wisconsin) is a community property state, which makes any property acquired during the marriage part of the marital estate and subject to division between the spouses. The same standard applies to any debt or loan obligations that are acquired by either of the spouses during the course of the marriage.

In the case you have presented, the property purchased with loan monies would be subject to division including the value of the education received. The loan obligation would also be subject to division between the parties.

While judges differ in their application of the division of the property, the current trend is that the loan would follow the party who incurred it. That party would have to account to the other party for the educational benefit received from the loan.

The court may also separate the loan into the money used for education and the money used for personal property and divide accordingly.

It would be necessary to review the actual loan application, review financial affidavits from each party and obtain further information on the marriage and any potential agreements made during the marriage in order to fully advise on your available options for property division.

It is recommended that you consult a mens divorce attorney to review the facts of your case and to develop a divorce legal strategy.

Cordell & Cordell has men’s divorce lawyers located nationwide. To schedule an appointment with a divorce attorney, including Daniel Exner, a Staff Attorney in the Milwaukee, Wisconsin, office, please contact Cordell & Cordell.

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