The mortgage on your Washington home remains in effect regardless of what happens during divorce proceedings. This is because your mortgage contract trumps language in a divorce decree. Therefore, you might still be responsible for making home loan payments for several months or years after moving out.
Why you might be liable for payments
If you earned more money than your spouse during the marriage, you may be required to contribute to the mortgage until the home can be sold. Alternatively, you may be required to make payments on the house so that your child has a place to live. If your name is the only one on the mortgage, you will also need to make payments even if you’re no longer on the deed.
How to get your name off of the mortgage
There are several strategies that you can try to get your name off of a home loan after a divorce is finalized. For instance, if the house is sold, proceeds from the sale will be used to pay the lender and fulfill your obligation. If the home is worth less than the loan amount, the lender may allow you to engage in a short sale to walk away from the house with no further obligation to pay. In addition, you can ask your spouse to take your name off of the loan by refinancing it in their name only.
In addition to a home loan, other joint debts may also be divided in a divorce. A judge may look at your income, employment prospects and other factors when determining how much you will be expected to contribute. You may also be entitled to joint assets such as funds in a bank or brokerage account that can be used to pay off debts.