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Brandon M.
Brandon M., Counselor at Law
Category: Legal
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Experience:  Attorney experienced in numerous areas of law.
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My wife and I agreed that I will get half placement, after

Customer Question

My wife and I agreed that I will get half placement, after we get divorced. She is on social security income for a disability and will never work a job in her life. This is due to social anxiety issues. I have worked hard to obtain an advanced degree, and make a decent salary. Seeing that she is disabled and was disabled before we got married, will I end up paying child support? I currently pay for my daughter's health care and pretty much everything else. However, it does not cost 17% of my income to do that. Am I going to loose my shirt in divorce court? Also, should I get a lawyer, even though the divorce is uncontested? She did apply for food stamps; so I am worried the state will make it difficult on me.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Brandon M. replied 3 years ago.
Hello there:

For how long have you been married? Also, how old are the children?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Married 3 and a half years and daughter is 3 and a half years old.
Expert:  Brandon M. replied 3 years ago.
Each spouse is entitled, to the extent possible, to continue enjoying the same standard of living that was enjoyed during the marriage---the payment from a financially advantaged spouse to a financially disadvantaged spouse is "alimony". However, the amount and duration of alimony is also determined, in part, based on the length of the marriage. So, for a short-term marriage (e.g. 3.5 years), a spouse would typically be entitled to collect only a small amount of alimony for a short period of time. In other words, you can typically expect to have to pay a little something for a short while, but you are not going to "lose your shirt".

Child support is based on the earnings of the parents and the percentage time spent with each parent, so "yes" you can generally expect to have to pay child support. If you have the child 50% of the time, that won't break you either... also, keep in mind that you do not have to pay for the child when she is out of your custody quite like you would in your custody and the money that is paid is "for the child", so the overall expense would not be overbearing.

You would do well to at least consult with a family law attorney to go over your earnings and discuss what a realistic support payment would look like, but the situation is not going to look anything like what it would if this was a 20 year marriage, if you had multiple kids, or if the other parent had primary physical custody.

I hope that this helps you to understand the law in your situation. Let me know if I may be of further assistance. Thank you.
Brandon M., Counselor at Law
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 12237
Experience: Attorney experienced in numerous areas of law.
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Customer: replied 3 years ago.
So I will have to pay half the 17% of child support is what you are saying.
Expert:  Brandon M. replied 3 years ago.
Not exactly; the formula is a little different than that; it involves the earnings of both parents and the percentage time spent with each. The 17% is based on no other support obligation (e.g. alimony) and 100% custody by the other parent, so the final number would typically be less than 17%, but it wouldn't usually be a straight cut of 50%. Keep in mind that she would pay you 50% of her income too.

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