Is the wedding still on if your fiancé declares bankruptcy?

Suppose your soon-to-be husband has filed Chapter 13 bankruptcy with the wedding only weeks away.

This has not caused you to cancel your nuptials, but it has caused you to make some financial decisions you had not considered before.

Sharing credit

You may worry that your fiancé’s bad credit will affect your good credit after you marry, but that is not true. The reason for this myth is that couples who share their finances frequently have credit reports that overlap. When you are married, your credit scores will continue to be completely separate. As for sharing, it will be simple enough to keep your checking, savings and retirement accounts separate as well as your credit cards. Sharing might come into play, however, when you apply for a mortgage.

How best to apply

Couples who apply for a mortgage together may be eligible for a more substantial loan. Because of the bankruptcy filing, you may want to think about applying for a mortgage in your name alone. You can expect to get an interest rate that is better than it would be if you were to add your intended’s bad credit.

More sharing

Think ahead a little: Once you own your home, you and your new spouse may open a joint checking account from which to pay your various household expenses. Remember that this would represent commingled funds. If he gets into financial hot water again, his creditors could come after that account, which contains funds that are partially yours.

A possible new date

The invitations have not yet gone out, so you might consider postponing the wedding until after the bankruptcy process is over. In a Chapter 13, your fiancé will continue paying his debts. Therefore, following the final judgment, you will know what those debts amount to and how they will affect his net pay. Make sure your fiancé keeps you apprised of bankruptcy progress and what steps he is taking to contribute to the success of your upcoming marriage.

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