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Should I change my name on all the bills?

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Anonymous Asked:

Me an my husband have recently separated, he has agreed to move out and i stay in the home with our daughter, He does not want me to change all bills to my name , but keep any bills under his name and I pay him for those bills for the house. Is this a good idea or should I have all bills changed to my name and should a lease be drawn up for the time I am in the home?

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Andrew Heft
6 years ago

The issue here would be to wonder what your ex-spouse’s motivation is to keep the bills under his own name. His intentions are not necessarily malevolent. Before changing everything, you should wonder if your current agreement if for the long term or if both of you expect to sell the house soon. You should also ask yourself if your credit rating and finances will permit you to take on all of the bills for the house. For shorter periods, it might not be worth paying the administrative fees and penalties involved in changing the account holder. However, as the account holder, you should be careful insofar as he maintains his power to cancel the services without your consent. In any case, if you are paying him to cover any type of bill or rent, make sure you obtain a receipt clearly indicating what the funds are for. If your current arrangement is for a long term, then it would be wiser to have the accounts transferred to your name, thereby taking an extra step towards complete independence from your ex-spouse.

Also, I would not sign a lease as you have rights to use the family residence under law, with or without financial compensation depending on a series of factors, including but not limited to type of ownership of the family residence. If your ex-spouse tries to expulse you for the house, I would consult with a lawyer before agreeing to such.

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