Question #44: I am a 42 year old woman with four children. I have been married for 21 years. Recently my husband has spoken of divorce. I want to know if he would need grounds? What are those grounds and could I contest them? If I contest them could he still get a divorce? He just recently took a job making 1/5 the amount of money he used to. Would my alimony be based on the amount he now makes, or would it be averaged over the years? Thanks for your help!

In order to properly respond to your question I must know what State you live in. In New York, “grounds” are required. In California, they are not. With regard to the spousal support you would receive, the judge would have to determine whether the present income of your husband reflects his true, present ability to earn or does his professional training reflect a higher level of potential income. It’s a subtle question that will have to be examined carefully by a judge. You could avoid this problem by resolving the issues, including child custody and support, by mediating the divorce. If you are located in the New York City metropolitan area, please call me at 212-370-1660.
Leonard M. Weiner, Esq / Divorce Solutions