Anonymous
Asked August 16, 2016

Can I be in trouble for my Father-in-law's debts?

  • 1 Answer
  • 225 Views

I am happily married for 6 year. I recently found out that my father-in-law, a business man, has taken a lot of high interest loans in last 4 years, apparently to cover his own business as well as his family"s expenses (nothing related to marriage expenses). He never told /consulted anybody in family for a long time and he has come out now as it seems his creditors are after him. This happened once earlier also 8 years back when they had to sell their ancestral property to ward off the creditors. His business is not doing well and he seems resistant to changing his hi-flier life style. I am a young man married with his elder daughter - he has one younger daughter also who got married 2 years ago. So we are just starting our family and don't have the spare resources to cover his debts. My mother-in-law as well as my wife are in shock also. I do not know if the younger sister and her husband know about this. We asked him if he has any strategy on how he plans to repay all this but he keeps mum to that. I find it highly irresponsible behaviour where he is not ready to come down on his expenses but expect us to somehow cover his debts. Seems like he has got serious lack of financial understanding. For the time now we have said we do not have any funds. We are trying to find out how much he has borrowed so that at least the damage is known. I want to know if there if there is any legal angle where I might be obliged to pay his dues by his creditors OR what legal actions, if any, I can take to ensure I do not fall into this mess.

Answer 1

You cannot be legally responsible for the debts of your father in law, unless you have been named the guarantor to his loans, in which case, if he fails to repay his loans, you have to fully repay them.[1]

 

 

[1] Ram Kishun & Ors. v  State of UP and Ors., CIVIL APPEAL NO(s). 6204 OF 2009. Available at http://www.arcindia.co.in/pages/doccuments/judicialPDF/judicial_04102012_22_31_32.pdf

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