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#773866 - 08/11/17 05:36 PM Alimony concerns
Camico1779 Offline
recently joined

Registered: 08/11/17
Posts: 1
Hello. I'm 38 and in the process of ending a 19 year marriage in Florida. During my marriage, I thought I was doing the right thing by taking on the role of breadwinner and letting the wife's primary concern be the kids and the household. As I'm finding out now, that could end up coming back to haunt me. I have my trial in about a month, just trying to wrap my head around what to expect...

We didn't live a lavish lifestyle. We lived in a family member's house (rent and mortgage free). I drive a 24 year old Jeep (joint owned) and she drives a 2013 Ram 1500 (solely in my name) that she currently has. We've been separated since May 2016. I filed in July 2016 and am still waiting for my day in court.

Anyhow... I'm predicting that she's going to ask for basically all of what I make. I'm just under $50k annually, and supply her and the kids (3) with health insurance through my work. Obviously after the divorce I can't insure her but the kids will still be on me. We have stuff... A garage full of tools (probably $3000 worth), a boat ($3-5000) and all household items. My question is, can stuff take the place of an alimony payment? If walking away from everything but my freedom be a form of payment? One option I've been suggested is keep paying for the truck, which is $370/month and let her have it. There is about 4 years left on that loan. Is that a likely candidate for payment?

Almost forgot. She is also 38 and has the kids full time. She has about the same amount of college behind her that I have, and has spent some time as a substitute school teacher as recently as 2016. I'd describe her as more able than willing.

Edited by Camico1779 (08/11/17 05:42 PM)

#773867 - 08/12/17 04:26 PM Re: Alimony concerns [Re: Camico1779]
TJMH Offline


Registered: 07/17/15
Posts: 349
You and your wife took on the roles you took with the expectation that you'd continue to be married, didn't you? You shouldn't kick yourself for that even if divorce has now changed the situation.

You'll probably be looking at two things--child support and spousal support (alimony).

Child support is usually a pretty straightforward calculation based on income and custody percentage. You can probably find your state guidelines and maybe even a calculator online that will tell you what to expect.

Spousal support is usually more subjective, but if child care duties make it difficult or impossible for your wife to work full time you can expect to have to substantially support her also.

I'm not sure if the state would allow your wife to waive child support. She could certainly agree to waive spousal support if she wanted to. But it's hard for me to picture a woman walking away from spousal support in return for a garage full of tools and a boat.

The problem with your plan for the truck is that she would "own" it but you would be responsible for the loan. What happens if you stop paying? She loses her truck (the lender won't care who drives it or whose name is on the registration, they'll enforce their lien on the title). I wouldn't agree to that if I were her.

So bottom line is that you can probably expect a fairly substantial percentage of your income to be going to your ex-spouse for a while--at least until the kids are grown. Once her child support responsibilities are gone, it would be reasonable to expect her to go back to work and contribute to her own support, which should reduce your alimony obligation.

Best thing for you to do would be to talk with a lawyer or a divorce mediator who can give you a better idea what to expect and how to manage the process.

#773980 - 10/05/17 10:06 AM Re: Alimony concerns [Re: Camico1779]
MinnesotaMom Offline

old hand

Registered: 01/05/11
Posts: 880
If she is a substitute teacher, she must have a degree and license to teach. She will be expected to work to support herself in the future. This should eliminate spousal support. Child support is set by guideline in your state.

You need an attorney.


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