Play video

Liability for Debts

Learn the extent to which the community estate and each spouse’s separate estate is liable for debts incurred by one spouse before or during marriage.


Before marriage, during marriage, and after separation, spouses may incur contract debts, tort debts, or support obligations. Also, recall that during marriage, both spouses generally have a right to manage and control community property. Implicit in that right is the ability to obligate the community to debts. Consequently, even during marriage, one spouse may commit to a debt without the other spouse’s prior consent.

It’s important to know which property is liable for a debt’s repayment....