Receiving collection letter for debt thought taken care of through Divorce?

I have looked in the Archives, but do not find this particular situation address. A friend of mine got divorce in 2003. She is now receiving collection letters for a debt she believed was taken care of when her divorce decree was granted. The letter basically states, I know where you live, work and where your bank accounts are located. She is spending many sleepless nights worrying about where she is suppose to come up with this money. Since her Ex is not working (drunken bum is more like it), they are coming after her. Would this be something that was directly addressed in her divorce papers??? Should she be contacting an attorney, which in turn will cost even more money. I'd like to give her some good advice but have never encountered anything like this before. She hates to ignore them for fear they will garnish her wages or get access to her bank accounts. Any help would be appreciated.

Update:

My friend is in Florida, as where I live in New York. Don't know all the details other than what I have stated.

6 Answers

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    For starters, it makes no difference who is listed in the divorce decree as being responsible, if she is listed on the loan she is going to be held responsible. The recourse is for her to sue the husband and get the money. That will be tough since he doesn't have a job.

    But without more info I can't give better advice.

    Is she listed on this debt as a co-signer or joint owner?

    Does she live in a community property state? Those states are:

    Arizona

    California

    Idaho

    Louisiana

    Nevada

    New Mexico

    Texas

    Washington

    Wisconsin

    And what is the Statute of Limitations for your state? In most states it's 4-6 years. If you have not paid on this debt in that time, they can not legally sue you for this debt. So if this was in 2003 you are approaching that date.

    You should consult with an attorney, as many will give you a free hours consultation.

    Post some additional info and we can advise you better, ok?

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  • 1 decade ago

    this is something that should have been taken care of during the divorce. however, when it comes to loans and finances, oftentimes divorce paperwork will not override any legal obligations to debts that have been signed in your name. the best thing that she can do is contact the collection agency and find out if there is a way to work the situation out.

    it's important to make sure that any item that was in both names (car, house, etc.) should be refinanced into the name of the person who is agreeing to take on the debt. this is the only way to ensure that the other is safe from collection practices if payments do not get made.

    Source(s): personal experience.
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  • Halo
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago

    Well, it should be addressed in the divorce decree about who assumes what debts. If the collection agency actually WROTE to her that they know where she lives..etc, that is illegal. She needs to look at her divorce papers to make sure that her ex was named as being responsible for the debts. If he is, then the collection agency needs to be told that. They will need a copy of the signed divorce decree though.

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  • 1 decade ago

    I got stuck with the bills too, even though I paid most of them during the divorce decree. I'm still paying on a medical bill. My divorce was in 1997.

    I don't know the laws in your state, but here in mine (WI) the collection people can come after her. They want their money and they don't care who has to pay them.

    During my divorce I had to pay $40,661.50. in debt that my ex had charged on credit cards that I didn't have. He took out the credit cards, maxed them out, dropped his name and added mine. (he worked in a bank)

    Unless she can afford to hire another lawyer, she's stuck with the bills. (I can't afford to hire an attorney. I make $900 per month)

    Source(s): personal facts
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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Actually, i enjoy talking with creditors, as i do not plan on paying most. But, since your friend is stressed-She needs to pinpoint EXACTLY where the debt is coming from what company, amt etc..Then she needs to contact her divorce atty-was this covered or not? Creditors can & will go to court about a debt (especially a large one). But, she needs to stand her ground, communication will get u everywhere.......

    GOOD LUCk

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Tell her to TALK to them...annoying as they are. They will usually work out a plan for clearing up the debt. Ignoring them is the worst thing you can do.

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