A new report has revealed a worrying relationship between increases in the divorce rate and growing levels of problem debts.
The figures from Debt Free Direct showed that an ex-partner’s excessive debts played a role in 28 per cent of bankruptcies.
People going through divorce proceedings were also a third more likely to file for insolvency than others.
“Typically, people in a relationship will take on debts in joint names, never believing that the relationship will end,” said Debt Free Direct spokesman Derek Oakley.
“But when it does the effect of divorce or separation can seriously heighten the impact of the debt problem.”
The problem can be particularly distressing in situations where people are unaware that their partner has run up large debts and have not taken action to reduce their exposure.
“For example, even after divorce, many couples still hold credit or store cards in joint names,” he said.
“After separation it’s important to advise the credit company to terminate the joint card. Unless you do this you could be pursued for payments on debt that your ex-partner has run up,” he said.
Women are 14 per cent more likely to be forced to declare themselves bankrupt than men, and are 26 per cent less likely to be granted an Individual Voluntary Agreements that will allow them to pay off their debt at the best rate possible.
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