Often times spouses will share joint credit cards.  That is fine – until the parties choose to divorce.  Usually, debt acquired after the date of final separation will be the responsibility of the party who accumulated that debt.

As the saying goes “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”
As soon as you begin considering divorce or separation you need to pay special attention to the status of your credit accounts. Are the accounts joint or individual?  If there are individual accounts, is your spouse an authorized user? You should immediately consult with an attorney regarding whether to close a joint account, change it to an individual account or before canceling any authorized users card. If you choose to maintain joint accounts during this time, it’s important to make regular payments so your credit record won’t suffer.  As long as there’s an outstanding balance on a joint account, you and your spouse are responsible for it.

In most cases the parties and their attorneys will reach an agreement as to who is responsible for what credit card debt.  But what happens when one party doesn’t abide by the agreement?  If it was a joint account, one party’s failure to pay will adversely affect both parties credit scores.  Sure the innocent spouse can bring the offending spouse back to court for violating the order, but there is no court remedy to repair a credit score.

Don’t leave any loose ends.
Make sure all joint accounts are closed and paid off prior to the divorce finalizing.  Don’t rely on the other spouse’s agreement to pay it off.  Get the money to pay off the account from another asset and make sure it is paid off and closed immediately.

By law, a creditor cannot close a joint account because of a change in marital status, but can do so at the request of either spouse. A creditor, however, does not have to change joint accounts to individual accounts. The creditor can require you to reapply for credit on an individual basis and then, based on your new application, extend or deny you credit.