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Unique Divorce Considerations for Wives Who Make More Money Than Their Husbands

Posted on in Divorce

DuPage County divorce lawyersThe roles of women and men have changed dramatically throughout the last 100 years. Women have gone from being treated as second-class citizens to earning the same rights as men. Even the last few decades have seen a dramatic increase in women in positions of power and authority. Many more women are choosing to make their career a top priority than in the past, and this has resulted in more families with a female breadwinner. If you are the primary earner in your marriage and you are considering divorce, you probably have many questions and concerns. Every divorce is different, but there are a few things you should keep in mind.

Know What Your Rights and Responsibilities Are

When we think of divorce, many consider the higher-earning spouse as more of a liability than an asset. After all, the spouse who brings more property and resources to the table has more to “lose.” The law treats marriage as a partnership, and most assets and debts accumulated during the marriage are considered to be marital property. However, many spouses struggle not to feel like certain things, such as retirement accounts or savings, are solely theirs. After all, they earned the money, so they believe they should get to keep it, regardless of the divorce.

Knowing your rights and responsibilities during a divorce as the higher-earning spouse will prepare to successfully navigate your divorce and help you keep what is rightfully yours. An experienced family law attorney can help you understand your available options as the financially-advantaged spouse and advise you during the entirety of the divorce process.

Know When You Are Actually Legally Detached

Having significantly more assets or income than your spouse makes for special considerations when it comes to divorce. Some women getting divorced have spouses who continue to spend marital property recklessly. Others worry that when they tell their husband that they want a divorce, he will attempt to drain the bank account or seek other financial revenge.

 f you are in this situation, do not hesitate to seek an injunction that prohibits your spouse from accessing certain assets. You may also consider pursuing a legal separation. Simply saying the relationship is over does not end the legal partnership between a married couple. This is a good beginning step for those seeking a divorce.

You should also keep in mind that any inappropriate spending by either party once the marriage has broken down may be considered to be dissipation of marital assets. If the court finds that dissipation has occurred, the offending spouse may be required to reimburse the marital estate. In extreme cases, additional sanctions may be ordered.

Let Us Help

If you are considering divorce, an experienced Lombard divorce attorney can help. Call 630-426-0196 for a confidential consultation with a knowledgeable, skilled member of our team today.

 

Sources:

https://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/30/business/economy/women-as-family-breadwinner-on-the-rise-study-says.html

https://www.forbes.com/sites/jefflanders/2017/06/13/a-less-common-income-inequality-when-wives-earn-more-than-their-husbands/

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