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Old 01-04-2011, 03:37 PM
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Default Will I or won't I? The thoughest decision I have ever had to make...

Good afternoon everyone...

I'm a 39 year old guy who has been married for 17.5 years. Met my wife when I was 18 and she was 32 at the time. I was in trouble with the law and she helped me get through some very challenging times.

I have two boys, 17 and 15.

As you may have guessed, it hasn't been a good marriage. We've always had issues being on the same page and sharring common interests. But feeling a strong sense of duty to be there for the boys and because I owed it to her, I stuck it through.

Now, I've actually been wanting to leave for the last 3+ years but, there's always been an excuse to not leave. Plus, whenever the topic comes up, she panics and gets very threatening. I'm having to ender a lot of mental abuse from her now that I've made it know that I am serious about this she has taken to accusing me of having an affair, apparently it's the only reason why I would want to leave. She is suspicious of everything I do... I won't go into details but suffice it to say, they are ridiculous accusations. I don't have someone else lying in wait and I have never cheated on her.

Anyway, I did go and see a lawyer last year to see what my options were and after a long year of contemplation and self-coaching I do believe I am ready. I need to do something before I lose my sanity.

One of my biggest fears obviously is money. She was a stay at home mom for 17 years and just this year went back to work part time making $13/hour. I make around 90k. Based on what I have seen, I am really worried there will be enough money left for me to live on. I know I won't live like a king, I plan to rent a 2 bedroom apartment for around $1000 per month, I've accepted that.

My question to the community is this, according to the lawyer I spoke to last year, I should only be paying spousal support for 6-12 months... now based on the research I have done, I think he was full of crap. Based on this, I've been planning on letting her keep the house (there is over 200k equity there) in exchange for no spousal support from me at all. Do you think that will fly? Would a judge allow that were she to agree?

Sorry if I am all over the place. As I'm sure most of you know, this feels like the most difficult thing I have ever had to do and I'm still looking for the courage to actually go through with it. Thanks for listening.

Dan
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Old 01-04-2011, 04:31 PM
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I think that Lawyer is full of crap too. That is a length marriage and definitely support will be for a much greater time period, as far as the house, Im familiar with 2 cases that what you want to do was agreed to and the used a lawyer to make it legal, Yes it will fly, in one instant one of the exs tried to go back after him a few years later for more support and was rejected.
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Old 01-04-2011, 04:40 PM
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The problem is how do I convince her? She doesn't beleive that the law is 50/50 division of assets. She has said that she will fight for me for 100% and I fear my half will get used up in legal fees and I will have nothing to show for it at the end and I will STILL have to pay spousal support.

Thanks for the input!
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Old 01-04-2011, 04:48 PM
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You call her bluff and tell her you will see her in court.
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Old 01-04-2011, 05:12 PM
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see if you can get her to go to a mediator
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Old 01-04-2011, 05:34 PM
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Running numbers, very simplified. You did not mention child support, so I ignored it.

You might be paying her 30K per year in spousal.
You: gross income = 90K-30K, after-tax income is 45K
Her: gross income = 20k+30K, after-tax income is 38K.
This works out her having 46% of your combined after tax income, which is generally an upper limit for spousal.

This means she is getting extra 21K after-tax per year. 100K home equity corresponds to 4-5 years at this level.

You could be paying this for many years, but from reading the spousal support guidelines, typically either the duration or amounts are reduced for long marriages, in the interests in promoting eventual self-sufficiency of the lower-income ex.

Last edited by dinkyface; 01-04-2011 at 05:41 PM.
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Old 01-04-2011, 05:43 PM
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I know CS will be around 1200 per month and I have no intentions of balking on that one.

When you combine CS with SS, it really makes you wonder if it's all worth it...
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Old 01-04-2011, 06:30 PM
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With CS, her after-tax income would be about 40% of your combined total.

Her: 20K after-tax is $18.3k + $14.4K = $32.7K.
You: 90K after-tax is $63.9K - $14.4K = $49.5K.

So probably there would not be much spousal on top of that...until CS is no longer payable due the kids age/school.

Last edited by dinkyface; 01-04-2011 at 06:50 PM.
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Old 01-05-2011, 01:26 PM
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So, does it make sense to throw the house away then?
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