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TonyTax, Tax Consultant
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 15979
Experience:  Inc Tax, CGT, Corp Tax, IHT, VAT.
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I'm currently going through a divorce having been separated

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Hi I'm currently going through a divorce having been separated for 5 years, would any tax arrears of my ex from during the marriage be considered a matrimonial debt/

We are all taxed as individuals in the UK so any tax debts that your husband has run up are nothing to do with you and should not be seen as joint debts like a mortgage for example. HMRC will pursue your husband for payment of any tax he owes, not you. HMRC would like the power to raid joint accounts but they don't have that power now and are unlikely to.

I've seen many divorce settlement agreements and tax debts have always been left out of any list of joint debts since the parties to a marriage started to be taxed independently of one another in the early 1990s.

I hope this helps but let me know if you have any further questions.
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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi If this debt is brought up in court, am I legally protected then? my ex is saying I will have to pay 1/2 even though he is wealthy, I have a very modest income, my ex earns around 10 times more than I do in a month.

As I said in my answer, you cannot be forced legally to pay your husband's tax debts.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you...this has been a great help... and a huge relief Smile

Thanks and good luck.