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If your sweetheart declared bankruptcy, is the wedding off?

You may have a great job and sterling credit, but the love of your life has declared bankruptcy.

If marriage is a partnership, does that include sharing finances and merging credit scores? What does bankruptcy mean for your future and the wedding of your dreams?

Learning about the bankruptcy

People all over the country file bankruptcy every day for many reasons. Bankruptcy is a time-honored solution for resolving debt. If your main concerns are protecting your personal credit and ensuring a stable marriage, begin by learning about the bankruptcy and keeping up with the process. If your fiancé filed Chapter 13, he would continue to pay his debts in monthly installments. Even Chapter 7 may not resolve all of his debts, and some of those may follow him into the marital state.

Dispelling the credit score myth

You should have no worries about your intended’s bankruptcy affecting your credit score because your score is completely separate from his. Where people often get confused is that when a married couple shares finances, they may have overlapping credit reports.

Keeping separate accounts

Marriage does not automatically link your credit scores, but if you separate your finances, you can dismiss that concern altogether. It is easy to keep separate bank accounts, credit card accounts, car loans and retirement accounts. In fact, married couples who have different assets and income levels often choose to do this.

Sharing your finances

Even if you decide to keep separate accounts, you and your future spouse may want to own a home together. If you apply for a mortgage jointly, you may qualify for a larger loan. However, in view of the bankruptcy, you might consider applying on your own. Because of your excellent credit, you could expect a better interest rate than if your spouse adds a poor credit rating to the mix.

Planning the wedding

As long as you are in the loop on the bankruptcy progress and your fiancé is making a sincere effort to enter the marriage on a sound financial footing, you can put your concerns in this area to rest. The dream wedding can proceed as planned, and you can look forward to a happy future with your soon-to-be spouse.

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