Primarily servicing the greater New York City metropolitan area



LEONARD M.WEINER, ESQ, Ph.D.
DIVORCE SOLUTIONS
206 East 38th Street
New York, N.Y. 10016
(212) 370-1660

FINANCIAL ISSUES - MARITAL PROPERTY V. SEPARATE PROPERTY

Question #20:
My wife is our main source of income and has been for the past 12 years of our 17 year marriage. Now that the marriage has come to an end she feels since she does make a much larger income then I that she should keep the majority of our assets. I believe it should be an even split because everything we have has been accumulated during our joint lives. Since I am in somewhat of a role reversal I am also curious how the courts in the state of Ohio would view this situation. Also would I be out of line asking for child support or spousal support.
Answer:
I am honestly not familiar with Ohio law, but in the State of New York and in most states in the U.S., both husband and wife will be treated equally regarding the granting of spousal support from the spouse who earns more during the course of the marriage. In your case, since your wife was earning the major portion of your marital income, and continues to earn such income, the courts will require her to provide spousal support for you, at least for a short period of time to allow you to improve your professional skills and become self supporting.
Such spousal maintenance will not be granted for ever and will be limited to a specific time frame in order for you to start working again full time. If you are unable to work because of disability, obviously the court will consider spousal maintenance for a more extended period.

Regarding the division of marital assets, you are absolutely correct that If Ohio is a community property State or a equitable distribution State, you should be entitled to approximately one half of all of the marital property (the definition of "marital property" you will find in an earlier Answer on this web site).

You should also be entitled to request child support if the child (ren) are living with you.

Leonard M. Weiner, Esq./Divorce Solutions

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