How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask LegalGems Your Own Question
LegalGems
LegalGems, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 7402
Experience:  Experienced Family Law Attorney
63726236
Type Your Family Law Question Here...
LegalGems is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I live in NC and my husband and I are separated. We have no

Customer Question

i live in NC and my husband and I are separated. We have no agreement yet, but last night he told me he was getting a divorce when a year is up. We are a 50/50 state in property division. We were married 25 years and together about 30 years. He makes more $$ than me and I work for him also. We have a lot of investments and he will always make more money and me and get bonusus each year. I worked for him and helped him build his business for years and devoted my life to him and our family.
Do I qualify for anything more than that? Alimony, he makes twice as much as I do or more; he left 7 weeks ago.
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  LegalGems replied 11 months ago.

I am very sorry to hear of this; a few minutes please as I get you the requested information.

Expert:  LegalGems replied 11 months ago.

According to code 50-16.3A, for alimony there are several factors the court will look at, delineated below:

(b) Amount and Duration. - The court shall exercise its discretion in determining the amount, duration, and manner of payment of alimony. The duration of the award may be for a specified or for an indefinite term. In determining the amount, duration, and manner of payment of alimony, the court shall consider all relevant factors, including:

(1) The marital misconduct of either of the spouses. Nothing herein shall prevent a court from considering incidents of post date-of-separation marital misconduct as corroborating evidence supporting other evidence that marital misconduct occurred during the marriage and prior to date of separation;

(2) The relative earnings and earning capacities of the spouses;

(3) The ages and the physical, mental, and emotional conditions of the spouses;

(4) The amount and sources of earned and unearned income of both spouses, including, but not limited to, earnings, dividends, and benefits such as medical, retirement, insurance, social security, or others;

(5) The duration of the marriage;

(6) The contribution by one spouse to the education, training, or increased earning power of the other spouse;

(7) The extent to which the earning power, expenses, or financial obligations of a spouse will be affected by reason of serving as the custodian of a minor child;

(8) The standard of living of the spouses established during the marriage;

(9) The relative education of the spouses and the time necessary to acquire sufficient education or training to enable the spouse seeking alimony to find employment to meet his or her reasonable economic needs;

(10) The relative assets and liabilities of the spouses and the relative debt service requirements of the spouses, including legal obligations of support;

(11) The property brought to the marriage by either spouse;

(12) The contribution of a spouse as homemaker;

(13) The relative needs of the spouses;

(14) The federal, State, and local tax ramifications of the alimony award;

(15) Any other factor relating to the economic circumstances of the parties that the court finds to be just and proper.

(16) The fact that income received by either party was previously considered by the court in determining the value of a marital or divisible asset in an equitable distribution of the parties' marital or divisible property.

Basically the idea of alimony, particularly in long term marriages, is to enable both spouses to continue to maintain the standard of living as established during the marriage, while recognizing that 2 homes are more expensive than one.

Also, while the state is an equitable division state, this does not necessarily mean a 50/50 division. The court will attempt to divide the property as equitably as possible, using the statutes enumerated in GS 50-20:

The income, property, and liabilities of each party at the time the division of property is to become effective.

(2) Any obligation for support arising out of a prior marriage.

(3) The duration of the marriage and the age and physical and mental health of both parties.

(4) The need of a parent with custody of a child or children of the marriage to occupy or own the marital residence and to use or own its household effects.

(5) The expectation of pension, retirement, or other deferred compensation rights that are not marital property.

(6) Any equitable claim to, interest in, or direct or indirect contribution made to the acquisition of such marital property by the party not having title, including joint efforts or expenditures and contributions and services, or lack thereof, as a spouse, parent, wage earner or homemaker.

(7) Any direct or indirect contribution made by one spouse to help educate or develop the career potential of the other spouse.

(8) Any direct contribution to an increase in value of separate property which occurs during the course of the marriage.

(9) The liquid or nonliquid character of all marital property and divisible property.

(10) The difficulty of evaluating any component asset or any interest in a business, corporation or profession, and the economic desirability of retaining such asset or interest, intact and free from any claim or interference by the other party.

(11) The tax consequences to each party, including those federal and State tax consequences that would have been incurred if the marital and divisible property had been sold or liquidated on the date of valuation. The trial court may, however, in its discretion, consider whether or when such tax consequences are reasonably likely to occur in determining the equitable value deemed appropriate for this factor.

(11a) Acts of either party to maintain, preserve, develop, or expand; or to waste, neglect, devalue or convert the marital property or divisible property, or both, during the period after separation of the parties and before the time of distribution.

(11b) In the event of the death of either party prior to the entry of any order for the distribution of property made pursuant to this subsection:

a. Property passing to the surviving spouse by will or through intestacy due to the death of a spouse.

b. Property held as tenants by the entirety or as joint tenants with rights of survivorship passing to the surviving spouse due to the death of a spouse.

c. Property passing to the surviving spouse from life insurance, individual retirement accounts, pension or profit-sharing plans, any private or governmental retirement plan or annuity of which the decedent controlled the designation of beneficiary (excluding any benefits under the federal social security system), or any other retirement accounts or contracts, due to the death of a spouse.

d. The surviving spouse's right to claim an "elective share" pursuant to G.S. 30-3.1 through G.S. 30-33, unless otherwise waived.

(12) Any other factor which the court finds to be just and proper.

So if one party is able to continue earning money while the other is not, the court can award more of the marital property to that person, to help support them.

The court, for family owned businesses, will also look to the spouse's respective contributions, not just time/money, but also if one spouse enabled the other by managing the household and other concerns so the other could concentrate principally on the business.

Expert:  LegalGems replied 11 months ago.

Additionally, it is standard to get a temporary alimony order as soon as possible, so that one has means to live; also the court will not generally order retroactive alimony prior to the date of filing for the request, so the sooner one gets the request filed and served, the better.

I hope I've answered your question to your satisfaction. Please let me know if you require further clarification.

And, please provide a positive feedback rating -- otherwise, I receive nothing for my efforts on your behalf.

Thank you; it's been a pleasure to assist you.

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
This is something online I have already seen and did not have to pay for the answers. Some of this language is too legal for me
to understand and wanted more peace about avoiding tax consequences, changing our Will. Our wills beneficiary now is each other. Is it unheard of to request that our wills remain in effect as part of the divorce deal?
Expert:  LegalGems replied 11 months ago.

Please let me know what clarification you need on the above and I will be more than happy to clarify. I tried my best to answer the original question - so before we move on to other questions, please let me know what clarification you needed on the original question. Thanks!

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Please answer my question. Am I charged automatically for any other services? I have already retained a lawyer. Please reply.
Expert:  LegalGems replied 11 months ago.

I was waiting to see which of the above information you needed clarification on. Then additional (new) questions would need to be posted in a new thread, per the site's rules. As an individual contributor I need to comply with the rules of the site; I thank you for understanding!

Expert:  LegalGems replied 11 months ago.

And no, there are no automatic fees.