Screwed over by business partner

Note: I posted this originally on r/personalfinance and it was deleted. I then followed the mod's suggestion and posted this on r/legaladvice and r/smallbusiness. Apologies if this breaks any rules, official or etiquette-wise.

Hi, this is my first post and I'm hoping this is the right subreddit. If it's not, I apologize.

That being said, I need help. I trusted my business parter, we started a small company basically for Web hosting. Signed up for a business credit card and while it was supposed to be a joint account, I was unaware credit cards work this way, but I was made primary and he wasn't. He did this for two cards. Basically, he set the business up so that if things went bad I'd be holding the bag.

Things went bad. He recently started using the card to buy things. Breakfast, a new gaming laptop, etc. We transfered a balance of about $19,000 out of my name onto his.

Then I discover the existence of the second card. That has roughly $8500 in balance. I want to get out from under this NOW, but because I was stabbed in the back I'm left holding the bag.

I know, I should have been paying more attention, and I was, until my wife and I had some issues related to mental/physical health that took a lot of my attention.

My former partner says he'll pay but he's paying the minimum instead of the entire balance. His business model was apparently to max out credit cards in my name and pay the minimum each month.

I can't trust him enough that he'll make payment, and I can't afford to pay it off. I lived within my means. Not one egregious charge is from me. But I assume, as I've said, I'm left holding the bag, legally speaking.

Unless someone here has some advice to help. I just wish after my partner's malfeasance I can somehow untangle myself from the situation. Or maybe someone has a magical solution for $8500.

Any and all help/advice is greatly appreciated. Help me Reddit, you're my only hope.

Also if anyone wants/needs more details, just message me and I'll respond. This last paragraph may or not be moot, as I'm not totally sure I'm doing this correctly. Also thanks in advance to anyone who responds.


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