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LegalGems, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 9908
Experience:  Experienced Family Law Attorney
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I live in was state. my husband has a girlfriend in manila

Customer Question

Hi I live in was state. my husband has a girlfriend in manila he lives here with me but we have not been close for six years he keeps everything separate and wont let me see anything I am not on his bank acct or anything he is quite abusive if I ask him anything the other day I was looking on Facebook and saw that the girl 23 yrs old he is 65 had changed her name to our name so they either got married outside of the us or they have a common law marraige I confronted him and he said yes he was in love with her hated me and she had his son ,he has been sterile for over forty years he had a vasectomy during his first marrage there is no way he could get anyone pregnant I never used any protection and we have been married for 26 yrs I have receipts that I have found from him sending her money. She is on quite a few mens sites on facebook I think she is a scammer,He was working in Iraq when he took an R andR to manila and met her. He came home to me and has been living with me every since, Is it ok for her to use his name and what should I do I have no income other than soc secutrity and he pays all of the bills so I can't even pay an attny. He has ruined my car so it is unreliable for me to drive I have to have surgery on my neck I have herniated discs in December and I don't want to be alone so I just go along with it and don't say anything this tramp knows hes married and doesn't care and shes only 24 I can't believe any one would be that callous what should I do.
JA: Because family law varies from place to place, can you tell me what state this is in?
Customer: Yes Washington State King County
JA: Have you talked to a lawyer yet?
Customer: No I can't afford one so I have no idea what to do or how to get my ducks in a row
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: No I just need to know what my rights are and how I can find an attny to help me
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  LegalGems replied 9 months ago.

Hello! I will be reviewing your question and posting a response momentarily; if you have any follow up questions please respond here. Thanks!

Expert:  LegalGems replied 9 months ago.

I am very sorry to hear that you are having to deal with this; that must be incredibly upsetting.

I do have some good news that may help though.

First, the courts and the legislature recognize that not everyone is in the same financial situation and thus that can create an unfair legal situation in a divorce, for example, when one spouse has more access to funds than the other. That is why the court can order the spouse with more access/assets to pay for the other spouse's legal fees-which makes sure that this spouse gets their "day in court" otherwise it would be unfair.

Here is that statute:

RCW 26.09.140

Payment of costs, attorneys' fees, etc.

The court from time to time after considering the financial resources of both parties may order a party to pay a reasonable amount for the cost to the other party of maintaining or defending any proceeding under this chapter and for reasonable attorneys' fees or other professional fees in connection therewith, including sums for legal services rendered and costs incurred prior to the commencement of the proceeding or enforcement or modification proceedings after entry of judgment.

Upon any appeal, the appellate court may, in its discretion, order a party to pay for the cost to the other party of maintaining the appeal and attorneys' fees in addition to statutory costs.

The court may order that the attorneys' fees be paid directly to the attorney who may enforce the order in his or her name.

Second, WA is a community property state, meaning that the court has the authority to divide community property upon divorce, so that the court may divide such property in an equitable manner, pursuant to code 26.09.080. The court will take into account such things as the length of the marriage and the parties' respective financial situation; but will not consider marital fault. For long term marriages, normally the court will divide the property 50/50.

So a long term spouse cannot simply walk away from a marriage with all of the property. Furthermore the court can even award spousal support to the spouse that earns less money -the idea is for both parties to be able to maintain a standard of living comparable to that acquired during the marriage, while recognizing that 2 households are more expensive to maintain than one.

If the individual is a scammer, the party affected would need to file a report with the police but it is difficult to prosecute these types of cases. There is an internet division that does handle these though.

I would urge you to hire an attorney; they can make a motion for legal fees to cover the retainer, and then proceed from there.

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Information provided is for educational purposes only. Consultation with a personal attorney is always recommended so your particular facts may be considered. Thank you and take care.