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WCLawyer, Attorney
Category: South Africa Law
Satisfied Customers: 15597
Experience:  L.LB (UOVS)
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I am wanting to divorce my wife after 27 years of marriage.

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I am wanting to divorce my wife after 27 years of marriage. We earn the same and our debts are of the same value. We are married ANC without accrual. Can she claim maintenance from me and do I have the right to claim against her pension fund?


Good day.

1. Since you are married without accrual, neither party has a claim in terms of the marriage property system, against the assets of the other party. This means that you cannot claim any percentage of her pension. Neither would she have a claim against yours.

2. Either party can claim maintenance, but would not be automatically entitled to maintenance against the other party.

Spousal maintenance is not an automatic claim as child maintenance would be. The person claiming spousal maintenance must prove that he/she is entitled to spousal maintenance. A spouse claiming maintenance must, therefore, put forward reasons on why such a spouse is entitled to maintenance. The court will take into account these factors and make a decision.
Factors may include existing and prospective earning capacities of both spouses, affordability, the ages of the spouses, how long they were married and how much each spouse contributed to the day to day household, standard of living prior to the divorce, the reason for the divorce, if the spouse claiming maintenance did not work, why he/she did not work and any other factor that the court deems relevant.

I am not sure what else I can advise you on, but if you have follow up questions before you rate, feel free to ask them at no extra cost. If you are satisfied with the service, kindly rate it positively. I do not get anything unless you rate the service.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

There are no children involved. We have both worked for the same amount of time. We both earn similar salaries. She has taken on debt to assist the family to survive and so have I. The debts amount to about the same value yet she is now claiming that I took the money and spent it.

She still need to prove that you spent money that she borrowed for something other than the reciprocal maintenance obligations.

Remember that if she claims maintenance, she needs to prove that she is entitled to it and given the things that you have mentioned now, it is probably going to be problematic for her to convince the court that she is entitled to maintenance.
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