You’re thinking, “I want a divorce but my wife can’t support herself.”
What happens when your wife can’t support herself after a divorce?
We’re covering things like:
Let’s dig in.
You want a divorce, but your wife can’t support herself.
There are three different scenarios for divorcing a wife who can’t support herself.
They are going to be:
The courts will try to return each person to their financial state before the marriage.
(If it’s a super short marriage, you could just get an annulment.)
This is usually true even if one spouse is a high-income earning spouse.
And even if one spouse is a stay-at-home mom.
Let’s say both spouses are able to work and are in good health.
The courts may not award financial support in the divorce settlement to the wife.
Even if you want a divorce and the wife can’t support herself initially.
They will expect her to get a job to support herself.
They can force her to get a part-time or full-time job to help support herself.
These marriages have the most uncertain outcomes in terms of alimony and spousal support.
This is not great to hear since the average length of a marriage is 8 years per divorce statistics.
The court’s main goal is to give your ex-wife time to get her footing if she can’t support herself.
This means that they will award her spousal support for a period of time.
A good rule of thumb is that you’ll pay one year of alimony for every three years of marriage.
Some things that the courts look at during the divorce process when a marriage ends are:
The judge takes all of this into consideration when determining financial support.
You may not think your wife can support herself.
But the courts may force her to get a part-time or full-time job to support herself.
You just may have to give her some spousal support for a couple of years.
The courts want an ex-husband and ex-wife to have equal footing when their marriage ends.
They are going to look at your financial situation with things like:
Basically, they want you and your ex-wife to both have equal financial security in retirement.
Yes, a husband has to support his wife during separation if he’s the higher-earning spouse.
Let’s say that the husband has to pay spousal support to his wife who can’t support herself.
In this case, the husband has to support her during the separation.
If the wife was paying spousal support, then she would have to support the husband.
When your wife doesn’t work, but you want a divorce, then finances will be tougher.
Let’s talk about what happens when you want a divorce but your wife can’t support herself.
(Usually, the judges will financially favor a stay-at-home mom since she can’t support herself.)
Child support is generally not affected by a wife who can’t support herself.
The amount you’d have to pay would be roughly the same as if she could support herself.
With divorce with children, child support is meant to maintain the child’s standard of living for:
What if a wife who can’t support herself uses child support for herself?
In this case, you need to:
A judge will award alimony to your wife when she can’t support herself.
“Can’t support herself” can be temporary or long-term.
Let’s say your wife can’t support herself temporarily.
And she needs financial support to get back on her feet.
In this case, the courts will award alimony while your wife:
But what if you want a divorce and your wife can’t support herself long-term?
An example of this is when your wife was a stay-at-home mom and has no skills or education.
And her job prospects are very limited.
A judge may award long-term alimony to your wife so she can support herself.
This is reserved for:
Related: How Long Do You Have To Pay Alimony
You want a divorce, but your wife can’t support herself.
How does health insurance play into this?
Will you have to maintain health insurance for her?
Your wife will no longer be eligible for your health insurance once the divorce settlement is final.
But, during the divorce proceedings, she will still be on it.
For employer health plans, only dependents can be on your health insurance plan.
An ex-wife is no longer a dependent.
When you want a divorce but your wife can’t support herself, you have two main options.
We recommend getting an uncontested divorce.
But, many times, divorcing a wife who can’t support herself turns into a contested divorce.
Related: How Long Does A Divorce Take
You can have an uncontested divorce even if you don’t think your wife can support herself.
An uncontested divorce just means that you both agree on divorce-related issues.
In your case, it means your wife is okay with the amount of financial support you’re giving her.
When you have an uncontested divorce, you can either:
Either way, our family law firm can help with your divorce.
Just fill out the form on this page to get a free consultation.
Our divorce packets have instructions on how to fill them out.
So that you and your wife can sit down together and hash things out more easily.
Or we can handle your uncontested divorce for you.
That way, it’s the smoothest and fairest outcome for both parties.
Most of the time, when a wife can’t support herself, she will contest the divorce.
(Most of the time, but not always.)
A contested divorce is when two spouses cannot agree on the divorce settlement terms.
Normally, the wife will contest the amount of financial support you’re trying to give her.
This is normal as she’s more than likely very nervous about life after the marriage ends.
To protect yourself financially, you need to hire a divorce lawyer.
(Note that contested divorces can rack up legal fees and cost you a lot of money.)
Just fill out the form on this page to get a free consultation with our law firm.
If your wife will work with you, you can fill out divorce papers on your own.
Divorce papers only work when you and your wife can agree on the divorce settlement.
This means that you have an amicable divorce (this is a great thing).
Just fill out the form on this page to get divorce papers tailored to your situation.
We even offer to review divorce papers for couples so that nothing is messed up before filing.
This gives you just enough legal advice to complete your divorce on your own.
This means you agree on things like:
Usually, if you’re getting a divorce and your wife can’t support herself, you can’t go this route.
Wives who can’t support themselves tend to contest divorce.
Let’s talk about the divorce process when you want to divorce a wife who can’t support herself.
So, you want to divorce your wife but she can’t support herself.
What does the divorce process look like?
It’s actually the same as any divorce process.
Related: Do You Have To Sign Divorce Papers
The first step is filling out the divorce papers.
(We can provide you with these, along with instructions on how to fill them out.)
You’ll need to know information like:
Then you need to file the divorce papers at your local County Clerk’s office.
Related: Questions to Ask A Divorce Lawyer
Married couples seeking a divorce should request temporary court orders.
During the divorce case’s proceedings, this determines:
Temporary court orders are only in place between the breakup and the final divorce order.
These temporary court orders will get replaced with the final divorce settlement.
You have to serve your wife with divorce papers.
This does not mean you just walk in and hand them to her.
You have to file proof of service with the divorce courts.
If you don’t do this step properly, your ex-spouse can claim they never received it.
And this can prolong the divorce proceedings and cost you a lot of money.
You’ll need to have your divorce lawyers negotiate the divorce settlement.
This includes how to handle things like:
If you and your wife cannot come to an agreement, you need to go to trial.
This will cost you a lot of money in legal fees for divorce lawyers to go to trial.
The final step is the judge signing the Judgement of Divorce.
This is a court order that legally ends the marriage.
And it specifies the details regarding:
If you want a divorce and your wife can’t support herself, fill out the form below.
Make sure that you don’t get raked over the coals financially with a good divorce lawyer.
We can either: