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 #24:
I have been divorced since Dec 94, in Texas. As part of the divorce document my ex-husband agreed to pay me $8000 per year towards furthering my education, due on June 1st of each yr - for 4 yrs. He has not paid me any money and said he won't. Even though he agreed at the time he wanted to help me go back to college. He says he does not have the money, but he is a professor and makes a good salary, he could get a loan I'm sure. I helped put him through college, BS, MA, PhD, etc. How can I get this money from him? Without having a full-fledged court battle? Any advice would be appreciated.
Answer:
You should check your Separation Agreement with regard to the resolution of any dispute which may arise after the divorce papers have been filed. In most cases the court reserves the right to hear all disputes related to be terms of the Separation Agreement, which as you indicate, would include the provision regarding the $8000 for your educational pursuit. There may be an arbitration clause regarding disputed issues in which case you could take this matter to arbitration. In any case, you should seriously consider enforcing your right to this money and not allow him to simply avoid his contractual obligation to provide it to you. You may find an attorney willing to accept the case on a contingency basis which will allow you to proceed against your former husband without having to spend additional sums of money and there may also be an attorneys fees clause in your Separation Agreement which would provide that your former husband, if he loses the case, will have to cover your attorneys fees as well.

Good luck!

Leonard M. Weiner, Esq./Divorce Solutions

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