How to avoid debt
These ideas from Veda Advantage can help you avoid contracting debt from your partner.
Don’t sign Never sign anything without understanding the full implications of your responsibility. A signature is legally binding, meaning you will either meet the financial obligation or be held responsible for the debt.
Seek legal advice Your legal representative can read the fine print of the legal document, and advise you accordingly.
Talk If you have been left with a pile of bills, contact your creditor. They may be able to give you other options so you can avoid defaulting.
Share the burden When purchasing joint assets have them signed in both your names.
Be careful with credit Be wary of adding your partners name to your credit card as an additional cardholder as this means you are ultimately responsible for the card’s debt.
Keep up to date with your obligations Notify your financial institutions as soon as your relationship ends to close any joint savings or accounts in order to protect your money. Also ask them to stop any loan redraw facilities from being used, and get this in writing.
Cut them off After a relationship has ended, ensure your ex-partner no longer has access to your credit card. If you change address, ensure copies of joint account statements are sent to you so that you don’t miss payment for any bills.
Credit check Obtain a free copy of your credit file from Veda Advantage once a year to stay in tune with your credit history. Go to www. vedaadvantage.com.au to find out more.