Saturday, January 4, 2020

The Reality of Lifetime Alimony

From Oregon Alimony Reform comes real stories of the reality of lifetime alimony.

People always seem to underestimate just how unjust and unfair alimony awards are. Indeed in all but extreme circumstances, alimony is pretty sexist given that it is the man who pays 97+% of the time. Often the argument is that the woman stayed at home and raised the kids so therefore deserves alimony for her sacrifice. Firstly, that is in many cases like mine, simply not true. Secondly, why should a person continue to receive money post marriage for a career choice made during the marriage? Thirdly, if the court wants to reward a person for having less income during the marriage why do they not account for that at the time of the divorce?  Or does the court believe that women are unable to handle money so they need an income stream from a man rather than be responsible for a lump sum? Alternatively, maybe it isn't sexist at all. Maybe they court just wants to make sure that divorce stretches out as long as possible to maximize the amount of money flowing to the lawyers. I don't know which is worse.

It is hard not to be cynical.

One person on the Oregon Alimony Reform site wrote:
I was divorced in 2008 and we split our retirement funds 50/50, yet I have to pay indefinite alimony. I just don’t get it. When I retire I will probably have $2000/month from Social Security and $2000/month from my retirement fund. My ex-wife will probably be in the same situation. So I give her $2050/month and she has $6050/month total and I have $1950. Where is the fairness in that?
My wife ran a successful software consultancy business for several years, but just before we divorced she re-trained as a teacher. Our earning capacities are similar, but I have to pay to “support her in the lifestyle to which she is accustomed”, even though her full time income is sufficient for her to live a comfortable lifestyle and she could easily earn significantly more that she is earning today.

No comments:

Post a Comment