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How can you protect your credit during and after a divorce?

On Behalf of | Dec 16, 2021 | Divorce

Michigan residents going through a divorce might worry about their finances. This includes credit, which can be impacted during this trying time. However, there are steps you can take to protect your credit during and after your divorce.

Close any joint credit accounts

During a divorce, you should close joint credit accounts. Any credit card debt amassed by either spouse is equally shared, which can affect both of your credit. If your spouse is the one responsible for the debt, it can negatively impact yours if left open.

Get your own credit card

Next, you will want to apply for your own credit card. If your credit score was adversely affected by your spouse’s misuse of your joint account, you will want to start fresh by rebuilding your credit. If necessary, apply for a secured credit card or one with a low credit limit.

Use your credit cards wisely

During a divorce, it might be tempting to go overboard with your spending. However, this is a bad practice that can backfire on you. When you use your credit cards, use them wisely. Stay within 30% of your credit limit to keep your utilization ratio low and always pay your debt in full and on time.

Regularly check your credit reports

Periodically, you should obtain copies of your credit reports and check them. You want to ensure that all the information in the reports is accurate. If there are any mistakes, you should immediately flag them and report them so they can be fixed. Even a single error on your credit report can make a huge difference.

Change your passwords

Immediately change your passwords on your financial accounts. If the end of your marriage has become contentious, your spouse might try something dishonest and ruin your credit reputation. Even if you don’t think they would do that, it’s still wise to err on the side of caution.

These steps can help you protect your credit during your divorce.