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Financial Issues This forum is for discussing any of the financial issues involved in your divorce.

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Old 06-21-2011, 09:21 AM
Martins219 Martins219 is offline
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Default Divorce Settlement and suicide of Spouse

Hey folks, my first post here. I have searched through the posts here and have gleaned some useful information. But I wanted to ask some specific questions and see if any of the pros could weigh in with some advice. I am posting here on behalf of my mother in law.

Spouse A (wife) and Spouse B (Husband) divorce, go to court and have in place a divorce agreement which sets out the following.....

Spousal support. Spouse A does not work and she is reliant on Spouse B spousal support in the amount of 2000.00 per month payable through the FRO office.

Spouse B is to maintain a life insurance policy with spouse A as the sole benificiary in the amount of $142'000 which is to increase if the spousal support or wages increase.

Spouse A is to receive 50% of the pension benefit.

So 10 years later, Spouse B kills himself, suicide, while still on the job. His Pension has not yet kicked in, his life insurance benificiary was changed to his new wife against his court order and he was in arrears for spousal support in the amount of 4500$.

Could someone give me a rough Idea on what spouse A is entitled to receive? Will the life insurance policy still pay? It was a policy in place for over 10 years.

Must spousal support continue in some form? either through the life insurance paying, or the pension paying or from spouse B's estate?

Will the life insurance pay spouse A even if the life insurance is in the name of the new wife of spouse B? What about the court order? Do they even have to pay at all in the event of a suicide?

Thanks in advance for any of your input or advice.
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Old 06-21-2011, 09:45 AM
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Insurance typically won't pay out if death was as a result of suicide, you would have to check with the specifics of the insurance policy. If your name was never on the policy it is unlikely they'd pay anything to you, regardless of cause of death.

If you have an agreement in place that says you are to recieve support then you can make a claim against the estate for ongoing support. Not sure if it will cover the arrears but assume it would be considered an outstanding debt to be paid out upon his passing. Also not sure what your chances of winning would be or how long the process would take. I have a friend going through the same situation, minus the suicide. So far it's been over a year an no decisions made.
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Old 06-21-2011, 10:03 AM
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Most insurance policies will cover suicide if the policy has been in effect for two years; it is a myth that they are not covered. I would immediately contact an estate lawyer; this is an extremely complex matter. Do not wait; there is a two year limitation period for making a claim against an estate.
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Old 06-21-2011, 10:41 AM
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Only if your policy has a suicide clause, however if you make any changes or update an existing policy the waiting period starts over. Many insurance policies still refuse any payout at all if death is caused by suicide.
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Old 06-21-2011, 12:31 PM
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Not to sound ignorant but here goes.
After 10 years, do you not think that you should be sufficiently back on your feet to be worrying about spousal support?
It is a method of support to get people back on their feet, not a crutch to rely on till death.
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Old 06-21-2011, 02:54 PM
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Spousal can indeed be a lifetime payout, depends on the ages of the married parties and the length of marriage.
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Old 06-21-2011, 03:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blinkandimgone View Post
Spousal can indeed be a lifetime payout, depends on the ages of the married parties and the length of marriage.
You are correct in what you say but it still doesn't make it right. It shouldn't take a person a decade to get back on their feet in 99% of cases. I apologize if this is in the 1% that it does.

A person receiving spousal support would be the first to complain to their lawyer/judge/ex if the ex's income dropped. They would be making a case that the ex needs to increase their income to get the spousal support back to the original level.

Well it should go both ways. The receiver should also make every attempt possible to change the situation and earn a decent income.
You tell me who in the right mind would seriously attempt to change their situation when they are awarded $2000.00 a month support? All they need to do it watch a child or 2 through out the week under the table and they are living better than most of us.

Lets get real here. Just because it can be so doesn't make it morally right.
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Old 06-21-2011, 03:10 PM
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Should or shouldn't isn't the issue. That's just the way it is. Although I'm not saying I don't think both parties should have some responsibility for supporting themselves, every situation is different and should be (and usually is) treated as such.

I personally know people who recieve spousal support that are fully capable of supporting themselves yet make no effort to and it disgusts me. On the opposite end, I personally know people who cannot work to support themselves due to age or medical conditions and have had to fight tooth and nail to get pennies a month in support, which disgusts me as well.

Sometimes it is the right thing, sometimes it isn't. Regardless, that's just the way it is.

Last edited by blinkandimgone; 06-21-2011 at 03:12 PM. Reason: the voices told me to...
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Old 06-21-2011, 03:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blinkandimgone View Post
Sometimes it is the right thing, sometimes it isn't. Regardless, that's just the way it is.
Thoughts like this is why the Canadian Family Law System will never change. I am originally from the US (far superior family law system, meaning much more equal) and the way people seem to just except the way things are done in this country is disheartening.
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Old 06-21-2011, 03:24 PM
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LOL, well you could always go back there.
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