What Happens to Student Loans in an Illinois Divorce?

 Posted on June 21, 2024 in Division of Property

IL divorce lawyerStudent debt has received significant media attention in recent months due to the political debate over student loan forgiveness. More than 40 million Americans owe student debt, which is about 13 percent of the United States population. Together, they owe about $1.60 million in federal student loans, which breaks down to about $55,347 for the average American household.

It is common for married people to have student loans. But what happens to those loans in a divorce? Is it divided like other debts?

To understand what happens to student debt in an Illinois divorce, it is first important to understand marital debt. Keep in mind that the best way to find out what will happen to your student loans in a divorce is to ask an Illinois debt division attorney.

What Is Marital Debt?

Financial obligations that belong to both spouses are called marital debt. For something to qualify as marital debt, it must satisfy the following criteria:

  • It must have been incurred by one of the spouses during the marriage.
  • It must have benefited both spouses.
  • It must exist at the time of divorce.

Mortgages, car loans, and credit card debt, for example, are common types of marital debt.

How Is Marital Debt Divided?

Just like marital property, marital debt in Illinois is divided fairly, not equally. This means that a judge will divide the debt in a divorce based on what he or she thinks is right. When courts divide marital debt, therefore, it is done on a case-by-case basis. Many factors will be taken into account, such as your financial situation, your children’s needs, what property you are receiving in the divorce, and more. Sometimes, a judge may divide a debt between spouses mostly because it is too much of a hardship 

Are Student Loans Divided in a Divorce?

Student loans can be divided in a divorce, but it depends on the circumstances. For example:

  • If you attended higher education before the marriage and you still have student loans, they might be yours to pay off.
  • However, if you enrolled in university after you got married but had to drop out to be a stay-at-home parent, a court may decide that your spouse has a share in your student debt as well.
  • If you obtained a degree that enabled you to bring in significant income for the household, a judge may feel that your spouse should shoulder the financial burden.

Contact a St. Charles, IL Debt Division Lawyer

Whether or not your student loans are divided is up to the court. That is great news for someone who is represented by an experienced Kane County, IL debt division attorney, like the ones at Goostree Law Group. Our attorneys have successfully argued many times before courts to keep our clients’ debts to a minimum. Let us fiercely defend your interests and minimize your debt as much as possible. Call 630-584-4800 for a free consultation today.

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