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#774003 - 10/14/17 02:02 AM Alimony Unemployed Spouse
kp1123 Offline
recently joined

Registered: 10/14/17
Posts: 1
Loc: PA
The main thing keeping me from filing for divorce is that I fear I will have to support 2 households rather than 1.

Over the past 10 years my husband has been unemployed more than employed, although historically he has had six figure jobs while working. He has been fired from 3 of his past five jobs. He was fired from his most recent job over 2 years ago.

Also, at one point he tried to start his own consulting company and spent probably $40K with little or no return. He has never been willing to look for a job paying substantially less, or considering driving for Uber or working at Lowe's part time. He stays at home with our dogs most of the time and then lashes out at me because he feels trapped at home!

We now live in PA. I work long hours in a job that I often hate. I would love to quit my job before I find another, but I can't because husband is not working.

If I file for divorce, it looks like I will have to pay him 40% of what I earn. Granted, some of our expenses will go down, but this stinks for me.

Questions: I am paying for loans on two cars. If he ends up with one of the cars, can he be forced to make the payments or will I still have all of the bills to pay in addition to both car payments? We have a mortgage but no other debt beyond car loans.

If I file, can he be forced to get some sort of job rather than simply collecting 40% of my earnings?

#774009 - 10/16/17 04:21 PM Re: Alimony Unemployed Spouse [Re: kp1123]
TJMH Offline


Registered: 07/17/15
Posts: 349
He can't be forced to get a job, but you probably can have income "imputed" based on his ability to work and availability of jobs. Almost certainly he'd be imputed with minimum wage, and possibly more based on whatever education and experience he has. So your spousal support obligation would be reduced based on his theoretical ability to earn income. Whether he chooses to exercise that ability is completely up to him.

To make that happen you'll probably have to get the judge to order a vocational examination--an expert look at his skills, the job market and typical salaries and provide a report which you can enter as expert testimony.

On the cars, both the value and the debt should be split evenly between the two of you. But that's just the property settlement side. If your name is still on the loan the lender will still be able to come after you if there's nonpayment. If one or both of you is unable to refinance in their name only, the car in question should be sold.

Edited by TJMH (10/16/17 04:22 PM)


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