Student loan burdens can lead to divorce

Posted by Lauren S. CohenAug 06, 20180 Comments

Student loan debt imposes a crushing burden on lots of New Yorkers, especially millennials. While many people are aware of the devastating impact educational debt can have on a borrower's financial well-being, fewer may recognize the role that it can play in undermining marriages. Financial disputes are among the most common reasons for marital problems, and the substantial burden of student loan debt is often no exception, according to one recent survey by Student Loan Hero.

Student loan borrowers in the United States have an average debt burden of $34,144, and that number is on the rise. For graduates of the class of 2017, the average student loan debt was $39,400. Many people with student loans may be troubled about how they can repay their debt. That stress and pressure can lead borrowers to delay important milestones like having children or purchasing a home, and the resulting disagreements can also lead to divorce.

The survey of student loan borrowers noted that 33 percent of divorced respondents said that financial issues, including student loans, played a role in the end of their marriages. Another 13 percent specifically attributed their divorces to educational debt. Among all respondents, 43 percent reported at least somewhat frequent fights over money with their partners. While the debt itself may remain in the names and hands of the individual borrowers, the issues that result from the outstanding debt can create a burden that undermines interpersonal relationships.

From spending styles to student debt, money issues can reveal a couple's incompatibility. However, a family law attorney can look after the best interests of a divorcing spouse. This may include protecting assets and striving to achieve a fair settlement in terms of property division and other key issues.