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 #270:
I live in upstate NY. My husband and I have been married for 17 years and are currently having problems, but not planning on Legally Separating or Divorcing yet. This is due to the fact he is going on temporary assignment for one year to Hong Kong. Part of our problems is that he is having an affair. Amazingly enough I feel that is not the biggest issue. The biggest issue is the 19 yr. old he has decided to financially support without my knowing it for 3-4 months and eventually discovering he had been doing it since May of this year 2011, and that he is still doing it. Since May he has given and spent at least $15,000.00 to $20,000.00 on the 19 yr. old. Most of it from a line of credit and the rest in cash. He had a joint checking account with her and most recently has co-signed on a car loan with her. Under two occasions recently the Credit Union we bank at has taken money out of our joint account because she did not make the payments.

My husband has done all of this behind my back. We are extremely financially strapped. And because of this he has put us more in debt. I have had to sell jewelry and scrounge for soda cans to sometimes buy groceries for us and that includes our 12 yr. old daughter. My husband makes a good salary - $120,00.00 a year, but we are in deep trouble. He says he is going to continue to financially help the 19 yr. old even when he is in Hong Kong. He will be in Hong Kong from December 2011 - December 2012.

His paycheck has always been deposited into our joint account. For 17 years I have always had access to it (deposited money, transferred money, withdrawn money, kept track of bills being paid etc...). I learned about him financially supporting the 19 yr. old by checking our accounts. Now because I do that and question him on what he is doing he has decided to shut me out. So here is my question, questions.

What are my rights? Can he cut me off from seeing, knowing how much money is there every two weeks and accessing it? Right now I have to trust him and wait for him to give me money.

I hope you can help me with this. The answer I seem to get is to start either Legal Separation or Divorce Proceedings. Because he is leaving in two weeks there isn't time and we were waiting till he came back. You ask why - I have a lot of medical problems, one of which is Parkinson's. We need to make sure we do the right thing to make sure I have GOOD medical coverage.

Answer:

If your husband has been supporting you and your child during the marriage the court will force him to continue.
He has a legal obligation to do so and you should discuss this matter with him before he leaves and see if you can work out a suitable arrangement that will satisfy both of you. If you cannot, you should make a motion in family court for spousal and child support and do so before he leaves the country.
Contact an experienced matrimonial attorney in your area to represent you. Do not Wait!

Leonard Weiner, Esq./ Divorce Solutions
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