Note: The DearEsq free 'ask a lawyer' site is offered as a free informational service to the public and is not intended as legal advice. Laws vary from state-to-state, and in addition every situation is unique, and relevant facts may not be known. The answer to the question posed below may not apply to in your state or to your situation. For legal advice in your state and your situation you should consult with an attorney in your state who is familiar with the rules and laws in your state.
“I have an extremely unique situation. I have been legally divorced since 2002 however never lived like divorced people. The divorce agreement states child support is set for $200 per week and I have right to file for alimony at another time being my husband at the time had a failing business and wasn’t making much money – although it was doing great before that. Agreement also states we could both occupy the marital home together and he had to support the home until it was put on the market. We never lived apart after that nor did I ever try to collect on child support being we were together as he was supporting me and our home never went up for sale. A year later he went out of business and got at job making $100,000 per year and I went back to work making $40,000 a year. This year we split up and I moved out. Shortly after I became unemployed and filed for unemployment which I am currently collecting. He lost his job shortly after that as well. He is living in our home paying everything and I am living in apt. paying bills as well. He hasn’t given me any money since I left the home 7 months ago and he refuses to file for unemployment which he is entitled to. We have a $150,000 tax lien on our home (incurred by him) that is in both our names which he always claimed he would be so we should put house up for sale. He also had committed adultery during the course of our marriage and fathered a child which he has been paying child support to for 2 years – child is 6 years old. I had filed an alimony agreement through a lawyer who filed it in the court stating he would be paying me $350 per week in alimony. This agreement was agreed to by the both of us in order to keep his child support payment to her at a minimum. I also agreed to this thinking one day I might need to collect on it as well. He is currently trying to start up his own business and has $9,000 in checking account which I can access but have been afraid to. I do not know what to do and where to go from here. I’m extremely broke and bearly have food for my daughter. The reason I left finally was due to his abusive nature. Please help with any advise.”Surprisingly, your situation is not actually all that unique. Many people file for divorce, and then end up reconciling. Unfortunately, courts in different states, and even different courts or different judges in the same state, treat this situation different from one court to the next. That is because each situation is so very fact- specific.
Question: The best advice that I can give you is to get yourself a consultation asap with a family law attorney in your home state. They will be best situated to know how the facts of your situation will likely play out in court.