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Alec
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Alimony Estimate in Maryland
      #178894 - 12/20/06 08:44 AM

Couple in Maryland married 17 years. 3 children ages 14, 12, and 11. Couple plans to separate upon the sale of their house in the spring. Both parties will receive approx. $200,000 from this sale. Couple plans to have 50% custody of all the children. Couple has no debt aside from mortgage.

Husband: Grosses $8750/month and will contribute toward children's health insurance (approx $125/month).

Wife: Holds BS in Chemistry and BS in Elementary Ed. Worked briefly as teacher in early '90s prior to kids. Has never worked in chem field. Has worked part-time in local elementary school as a teacher since 1999. Plans to return to full-time teaching career with estimated gross income of $2500 to $3000/month.

Question: Can anyone ballpark projected alimony payments by husband? Duration? Need more data?

Thanks

Edited by Alec (12/20/06 08:49 AM)


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Miranda
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Re: Alimony Estimate in Maryland [Re: Alec]
      #178902 - 12/20/06 09:23 AM

There is no real alimony calculator. It depends on your state, its law, and the judge. Have you retained an attorney?

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Miranda
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Re: Alimony Estimate in Maryland [Re: Miranda]
      #178905 - 12/20/06 09:24 AM

Also please ignore posters who will come on here and pick an arbitrary number out of the sky, pretend to know your finances, and tell you what you should be paying as if it is "fair".

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Alec
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Re: Alimony Estimate in Maryland [Re: Miranda]
      #178909 - 12/20/06 09:34 AM

Thanks. No attorney. We are going to go to mediation. I'm just looking for a ball-park figure since the child support worksheet I am using prompts for alimony payment.

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Melody
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Your stats are similar [Re: Alec]
      #178985 - 12/20/06 12:17 PM

to mine. I was married 17 years. Ex's income was about $8500/month. Mine was considerably lower. I was working on my BS. At the time we had 50/50 custody. Ex refinanced and bought out my share of home equity. All debts were paid.

Alimony was ordered at $1600 per month with no termination date other than remarriage or death. I was encouraged by the judge to complete my BS and return to work full time within a reasonable period. At that point, ex could petition to lower alimony. He did; it was reduced to $1100 per month.

BTW....I am also working full time as a teacher, making slightly higher than the income you project for your wife.

I would expect to be paying out somewhere between $1000 and $1500 per month. As for the duration, it could be permanent...it's all up to judicial discretion. I don't think "I'm" the culprit that Miranda is warning you about.

You could have an employment/educational evaluation done on your wife to determine what level of jobs she qualifies for with her chem background, then establish what level of compensation she could expect to receive in those positions. If they are higher than the teachers salary, you could request that the courts impute the higher income to her since it would be her choice to work in the lower paying teaching job. My ex attempted to do that. I received my BS in MIS, but accepted a teaching position due to the dot com bust and the amount of IT professionals out of work. AFter he spent thousands of dollars on the evaluation, it was determine that if I were fortunate enough to geta job in the IT field, the starting salary for one fresh out of school with no prior experience would have been the same as my starting teacher pay.


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Gecko
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Re: Alimony Estimate in Maryland [Re: Alec]
      #178988 - 12/20/06 12:25 PM

Can anyone ballpark projected alimony payments by husband? Duration? Need more data?

---> Calculating SS isn't like CS because there are just WAY too be many variables to take into consideration. Looking at some historic figures for alimony in the largest county in my state, the numbers are ALL over the board with 7 months of alimony for a 2-year with no children to 3 years of alimony for a 37-year marriage without any children.

---> Your wife holds two degrees, and has worked and currently works in one of the fields so education and job training is not an issue. Even though she was a full-time SAHP for approximately half of the marriage, she has also worked for approximately half of the marriage and has in fact, been working at least part-time for the last 7 years so it won’t be difficult for her to return to work full-time. So the issue is…how much would she have been earning had she worked the last 17 years versus how much she earns now. An example would be say had she continued working, she would be earning $45,000 versus the $36,000 she will earn which is a difference of $9,000. Since she is equally responsible for her choice to stay home, you split that $9,000 to $4,500 or $375 a month for half the length she did not work full-time, which would be 7 years, so 5 years of alimony might be ordered.

---> Then there is the issue of the difference in incomes and what she might have contributed to it in say, by being a full-time and then later part-time SAHP, did it contribute to your being able to advance further in your career? If the answer is yes, then you would apply the reverse of the above in say you would only be earning $5,250 instead of $8,750, which is a difference of $3,500 split because of equally responsibility for $1,750 or $145 a month. Combined with the above, one could guesstimate your alimony at $520 a month.

---> I know a lot of people are going to squawk...they'll guesstimate it $1,000 to $1,500 a month for the rest of your life, but the above calculations are local and correct and in referencing my states history figures...pretty damn close. People forget that BOTH parties have EQUAL responsibility for the choices that they make. Like choosing to pursue a career as a teacher rather than as a chemist, or being an elementary teacher versus a college professor.

---> And using my state’s calculator, your CS would be $352.

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Susanf31
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Re: Alimony Estimate in Maryland [Re: Gecko]
      #179045 - 12/20/06 01:58 PM

I think Gecko is wayyyy off on those figures.

No, I don't think your alimony will be for life. I think it will be for roughly 8 years.

The amount. You make $105k to her $36k. To make incomes roughly equitable so each of you enjoy a similar standard of living, I think she will get in the ballpark of $2500 a month.

Alimony is not based on the number of years a person was out of the workforce, but more on the number of years married. There are many other factors involved, but the end matter is that you make a high income and your wife worked PT supporting you in your career advancement, at the detriment of her own. She did that with the expectation that she would share.benefit in/by your high income.



Edited by Susanf31 (12/20/06 02:00 PM)


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Gecko
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Re: Alimony Estimate in Maryland [Re: Susanf31]
      #179060 - 12/20/06 02:36 PM

I think Gecko is wayyyy off on those figures.

---> No I'm not...as I said, I checked the historial figures in the largest county in my state and I was pretty "right on".

To make incomes roughly equitable so each of you enjoy a similar standard of living.....

---> That's a nice idea, but you're forgetting about accountability and responsibility.

There are many other factors involved, but the end matter is that you make a high income and your wife worked PT supporting you in your career advancement, at the detriment of her own.

---> Where did you read that?

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Melody
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He may not have SAID that.... [Re: Gecko]
      #179077 - 12/20/06 03:29 PM

but we all know that is how the wife's attorney will portray it. The perception will be that she forsake her career in the interests of him advancing his career and to tend to the children. He said/she said....what's a judge to do? He'll probably go with the standard that many wives give up a lot to raise the children and be supportive of their spouse's career. Fair? In many cases, yes....in some cases, maybe not. Reality? yeah, probably.

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Susanf31
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Re: Alimony Estimate in Maryland [Re: Gecko]
      #179094 - 12/20/06 04:27 PM

So the issue is…how much would she have been earning had she worked the last 17 years versus how much she earns now. An example would be say had she continued working, she would be earning $45,000 versus the $36,000 she will earn which is a difference of $9,000. Since she is equally responsible for her choice to stay home, you split that $9,000 to $4,500 or $375 a month for half the length she did not work full-time, which would be 7 years, so 5 years of alimony might be ordered.
++++++++++

K, Gecko, let's run with your logic, only let's use realistic numbers. She probably went to work in education because the hours suited her FAMILY'S needs. If she had gone full-throttle with her chemistry degree, she'd easily be making close to $100k if not more.

The difference between what she can earn now, as a teacher, $36k and $100k she'd probably be making (not $47k as you say) is $64k. They split that difference equally, and that's $32k to her...or about $2500 a month.

How can you assume "she would be making $46k" as a teacher, when she also holds a BS in Chemistry and could have chosen that route, if not for the needs of the family?


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