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Will I pay disabled husband spousal support

Discussion in 'Alimony & Spousal Support' started by MomRocks, Dec 19, 2015.

  1. MomRocks

    MomRocks Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Jurisdiction:
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    I have three kids and separated from my husband (married 16 years) five months ago. After a few weeks he left to an extended stay hotel and let us return to the home. His drinking, crazy anger outbursts, and police in our home led to the separation. After awhile the hotel became too expensive for us. He is now staying with a friend. Since separated he's been evicted from a room for rent at a mobile home park, probably due to an arrest a few weeks ago for illegal concealed carry in LA, wrecked his car with no collision, and now no transportation, and had all his belongings stolen.

    The concern I have is he hasn't worked in over 10 years due to chronic back pain. He receives Social Security Disability close to $1600 month. I make 64k a year and get $783 for the kids from disability. I have filed for divorce and want to settle out of court, but he is telling me he needs monthly support. He doesn't make three times the rent to qualify at apartments. Yet my income has to pay for our house and raising three boys. I won't ask for child support as I already receive the disability.

    I really do want him in a decent living situation as he's the father of my kids, even though two don't want to see him after the events before the separation.

    What are my financial obligations to him at this point? And what are the chances I'll pay support to him? And being disabled, would that make it forever?
     
  2. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    You need to discuss your concerns with a lawyer licensed to practice in Texas, if your IP address is correct.

    Each situation is different, so there's no hard and fast rule as to whether spousal support will be granted.

    That's why you need a lawyer, if you can't agree on your divorce.

    With children, property, and other issues, it serves you best if you have your own lawyer.

    Your reasons for divorce are somewhat compelling, especially when you want to do what's best for your children.
     
  3. MomRocks

    MomRocks Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Yes we are in Texas. I don't think custody will be an issue. He really can't care for them full time. I wouldn't fight standard visitation. Splitting financial assets should be easy as we have fairly equal amounts already in each of our names. I do have a lawyer and he said I can ask to stay in the home until the 10yo turns 18, then sell and split proceeds. We have 60k in equity which he will want his half now. If I have to sell now not the end of the world. Only other issue is he has no car now and support. The latter being my main concern. My lawyer thinks in my county since I have the kids I won't be paying support. but my case is quite unique so I'm concerned.
     
  4. Disabled Vet

    Disabled Vet Active Member

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    Changes to Spousal Support in Texas
    House Bill 901 amends Texas Family Code sections dealing with spousal maintenance (support), and became law on September 1, 2011.
    The bill modifies the eligibility for spousal maintenance and makes changes to the factors a court looks at when determining how much and for how long they will receive spousal maintenance.
    There is now a "rebuttable presumption" that spousal maintenance is not needed. A rebuttable presumption is an evidentiary burden that can be overcome (rebutted) if evidence is shown to the contrary. To rebut the presumption, the spouse seeking maintenance must lack sufficient property, including the spouse's separate property, to provide for the spouse's minimum reasonable needs.
    Additionally, the spouse seeking maintenance must have been a victim of domestic violence within the past 2 years of the filing date of the suit or while the suit is pending or the spouse seeking maintenance is unable to provide for his or her minimum reasonable needs due to a incapacitating physical or mental disability, has been married for 10 years or longer and lacks the ability to earn sufficient income to meet his or her minimum reasonable needs, or is the custodian of a child of the marriage who is disabled and whose care prevents the spouse from earning sufficient income to meet the spouse's minimum reasonable needs.
    The legislature has made this change to make more specific what the spouse requesting the maintenance needs to show, removing vague terms like "suitable employment," "self-sufficient" and "gainful employment."
    How Long Can Spousal Maintenance Payments Last?
    The new law allows a longer period for spousal maintenance payments, and the length of time is tied to the length of the marriage.
    The duration of spousal maintenance is now:
    • Five years, increased from three, if the spouse making the payments was convicted of domestic violence, or they were married at least 10 years, but not more than 20.
    • Seven years, if they were married between 20 and 20 years
    • 10 years, if they were married more than 30 years.
    The law removes the requirement for "obtaining appropriate employment or developing an appropriate skill" and now ties the duration to "shortest reasonable period" that allows the spouse in need of maintenance to "to earn sufficient income to provide for the spouse's minimum reasonable needs."
    Three exceptions to this requirement are:
    • Physical or mental disability;
    • Necessity of tending to an infant or young child of the marriage; or
    • Another "compelling impediment" to earning enough to provide for the "spouse's minimum reasonable needs" ("minimum reasonable needs" used to read "gainful employment").
    Minimum Monthly Payment
    The maximum monthly maintenance has also increased from $2,500 to $5,000. This is the ceiling on the amount of support the obligor (spouse who must pay support) can be ordered to pay. If the obligor's gross income is less than $5,000 per month, the obligor can only be ordered to pay up to 20 percent of that spouse's average monthly gross income. The definition of gross income for the paying spouse has been made much more specific.
    Gross income now includes:
    • All wages and salary income and other compensation, such as commissions, overtime pay, tips, and bonuses;
    • Interest, dividends, and royalty income;
    • Self-employment income;
    • Net rental income ; and
    • All other income, including severance pay, retirement benefits, pensions, trust income, annuities, capital gains, unemployment benefits, interest income from notes regardless of the source, gifts and prizes, maintenance, and alimony.
    • Excluded are: return of principal or capital, accounts receivable, various benefits programs, such as SSI, veteran's benefits, some welfare payments and workers compensation.
    Factors In Determining Maintenance
    The legislature provides a list of 11 required factors the court must consider when deciding a maintenance question.
    They amended some of the factors discussing the financial abilities of each spouse, and added the phrase "minimum reasonable needs" to make the sections consistent.
    H.B. 901 changes a few of the factors. In addition to "marital mistreatment," they now add "adultery and cruel treatment, by either spouse during the marriage."
    Termination
    H.B. 901 also amends the section dealing with termination of maintenance. Now, if the oblige (spouse receiving payments) cohabitates (moves in) with someone he or she "has a dating or romantic relationship" with, the court can terminate the maintenance.
    The legislature also added a new section that makes clear that until an order for spousal maintenance is terminated by the court, or by death or remarriage of the person receiving the maintenance, the person making the payments must continue their payments.
    This also includes any past-due payments, owed prior to the termination, death or remarriage.
    Modification
    The law allows modification of an order providing for spousal maintenance on a showing of a material and substantial change in circumstances.
    To determine if a change in circumstance is material and substantial, the court should use all of the 11 factors that would be used in deciding whether to award maintenance in the first instance.
    Also added was a provision requiring the return of any overpayment of maintenance, and it authorizes the right to file a lawsuit to recover any overpaid maintenance.
     
  5. adjusterjack

    adjusterjack Super Moderator

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    Stop talking to your husband. He is messing with your head. Let your lawyer handle him.
     
  6. MomRocks

    MomRocks Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Thanks for the reply. I've read most of this on the internet already. Which is why I'm concerned and asking about my specific situation. I know none of us can predict the judge though. Does his disability trump all? Or does me caring for the kids come first in determining if I pay support? Does his behavior prior to separating factor in (I have recordings)?
     
  7. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    The court will always strive to do what is best for your kids, first and foremost.
     
    Disabled Vet likes this.

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