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Can the Court Divide Debt Upon Divorce in Maryland?

The Maryland Court cannot divide debts between spouses upon divorce.

Therefore, one spouse cannot be held liable for the other spouse's debts. Spouses are jointly liable for debts in their joint names, although the Court cannot require either spouse to satisfy joint debts.

Debts of both spouses will nonetheless be considered by the Court as a factor when determining the amount of any monetary award to either spouse. When making a monetary award, the Court must consider as one of several factors each party's economic circumstances at the time of the award, including all income, expenses, assets and liabilities.

Even if a spouse's debts are non-marital or unrelated to the acquisition of marital property, the debts will be considered by the Court upon divorce in order to determine what is a fair and equitable monetary award under the parties' circumstances.


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Maryland Family Law recognizes eight different grounds for divorce. Adultery, voluntary separation (for at least 12 months), imprisonment (with a sentence of at least three years and at least 12 months already served), and living separate and apart (for at least two years), are among some of the reasons. For the court to grant a divorce based upon any of these grounds, they must be proved in court through evidence and testimony.
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