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Alex J. Esq.
Alex J. Esq., Attorney at Law
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Experience:  Experienced Licensed Attorney
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Ive been separated from my spouse since 1988 and spouse is

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I've been separated from my spouse since 1988 and spouse is now filing for spousal support. I've only been working for 3 years following a medical condition. I signed a divorce request that was received in the mail from my spouse's attorney many years ago; however don't think it was paid for filing since I never received anything else. I'm a resident of Pennsylvania. Any advice would be helpful. Thanks
Hello. My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will be happy to answer your question.

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Customer: replied 3 years ago.


Dear Diana,

Can you please tell me how long have you been legally married?

Have both you and your spouse been living in PA during the marriage?

What is your annual income and what is your spouse's annual income currently?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Married in San Antonio, TX in Jan 1988 then went in the Army Mar 1988 and spouse returned to Philadelphia around Apr 88. We have been married for about 25 1/2 years but separated for about 25 of those years..


I was in the Army for 6 yrs had training in Oklahoma and was stationed in Texas and Germany.


I have lived in South Carolina for a couple of yrs and in Texas for an additional year. Moved back to Philadelphia around 1994.


My salary is $29,200 annually and my spouse receives approximately $9,600 annually.

Dear Diana,

Given the fact that your income is extremely low, can you tell me what is the amount of alimony that your spouse is seeking?

Did your spouse already filed petition for spousal support?

Does either one of you have any type of pension or retirement benefits?

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

No amount has been indicated yet, but yes a petition for spousal support has been filed and received a week ago in the mail.

A hearing/conference is scheduled for a couple weeks from now.


Neither of us are currently receiving pension or retirement benefits.


My spouse is receiving disability (Medicare/Medicaid or SSI) benefits and may not have worked long enough to gain the points needed to receive retirement benefits when the age is reached, but not totally sure.


Other than the Army, I really just started paying into Social Security within the last 3 years, so at this point I don't think either of us has these benefits.

Dear Diana,

Thank you for your follow up.

Given your minimal income, it is extremely unlikely that your spouse would be awarded any type of spousal support, however you cannot simply ignore this petition and the court hearing and you would need to consult and retain local family law attorney to review this case and to also represent you at the hearing and this local attorney can help you resolve this issue, since there is very little chance of you having to pay any type of spousal support.

Also, your local family law attorney can help you to finalize your divorce, so you would be able to avoid any potential future issues with your spouse.

I want to wish you the best of luck and thank you for your service to our great nation.

Please let me know if you have any related follow up questions for me.
Alex J. Esq. and 4 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I can't afford an attorney of my own but the letter indicated that I can get one appointed. Is this a wise decision or should I try to scrounge up enough money for an attorney of my own?

If I filed for a divorce now could my spouse try to claim alimony?

Dear Diana,

Thank you for your follow up.

You can apply for an attorney from the legal aid, if you are unable to hire a private attorney, but I would suggest that you at least consult with a private local family law attorney, so you can obtain a legal opinion and best legal options / strategy to address your current situation.

Also, your husband can ask the court to award alimony, but once again, your income is extremely low and it is very unlikely that the court would award any alimony to your spouse, especially given the fact that you have been separated for the entire duration of your marriage.

I wish you the best of luck!

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Okay, I have a couple of other questions.


I've read something about possibly having to add my spouse to my medical insurance and paying medical bills. I ask this because my spouse has a lot of medical problems.


I never been put on child support but can my spouse request back child support? My child has lived with my mother for numerous years and is now 27 years old.



Dear Diana,

Thank you for your follow up.

It is not very likely that the court would order for you to provide medical insurance coverage for your husband, under the facts you have described.

If the child support was never ordered by the court while the child was a minor, it would be legally impossible for your spouse to seek any type of backowed child support at this time.

I wish you the best of luck!
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Can the state petition me to pay child support for the years that my spouse was on welfare?



No. Not at this point, since the child support was never ordered by the court in the first place.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thanks so much for the information you provided, it was very helpful.

Dear Diana,

Thank you and please click on the "excellent service" rating so I can receive credit for my answer. Positive feedback and bonus is always appreciated, but is not required.