If My Spouse Makes More Money than Me, Can I Get Alimony?

Question:caroline thompson attorney pennsylvania

My wife makes a lot more money than I do. We are about to get a divorce.

If her salary is much larger than mine, can I get alimony from her then?


While I am not licensed to practice law in your state, I can give some general guidance on this issue.

With regard to your support question, in many states, support is guidelines-based. This means the court takes each spouse’s income amounts to determine what the total monthly income available for support would be.

Support can be for the spouse and for the children. In some states, there are two types of support for the spouse, which include spousal support and alimony pendente lite (meaning alimony pending litigation).  Once a divorce decree in entered, spousal support or alimony pendente lite (APL) is then converted to alimony.  Spousal support and APL are generally only awarded when there is one spouse who clearly is the higher income earner of the family.

Also, if you have children, APL and spousal support may not be awarded, dependent upon your state laws. If a child support order is high enough to offset a spousal support or APL award.

Child support is generally awarded in most cases as, in many states, you have a duty to support your child until your child reaches the age of 18 or graduates high school, whichever occurs later.

As mentioned previously, the courts will take into consideration each parent’s income and determine what percentage of each parent’s income should be used for the support of the child.

In some states, in addition to income, the court will take into consideration the custody schedule (if one parent is the primary custodian of the children, the child support order generally is higher for the non-custodial parent, etc.) and if the children have ongoing fixed expenses such as private school tuition.

Remember, I am unable to provide you with anything more than divorce tips for men, so please consult a domestic litigation attorney in your area to obtain specific advice as to the laws in your state and how they impact your potential case.

To arrange an initial consultation to discuss divorce rights for men with a Cordell & Cordell attorney, including Pennsylvania divorce lawyer Caroline Thompsoncontact Cordell & Cordell.

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