In short, if you file for bankruptcy before getting married your future spouse will not be affected. This is a common concern for a debtor to bring up during their consultation with an attorney. For some reason, many people are under the impression that a couple shares a credit score or there is a “joint credit score.” For the most part, debts incurred by one party will be the responsibility of the person whose name is on the debt; unless, your future spouse co-signed a loan for you.
If you file bankruptcy and the debt included is owed by you only, then the process should not have an effect on your spouse-to-be. In many cases, as long as the debt is yours, meaning you are liable for outstanding amounts owed, you should get them discharged or eliminated with no problems.
The situation may be different if your future spouse co-signed a loan for you. In this case, if you file for protection the creditor could pursue your future spouse if they choose not to file bankruptcy. Unless your future spouse has the ability to repay what is outstanding on the loan, they may want to consider filing for protection as well.
Even after you get married, your spouse will not be responsible for repaying debt that was discharged in bankruptcy. If you are considering bankruptcy and your future spouse did co-sign for you on debt you intend to include in your filing, both of you may want to review the benefits of filing.