I’ve been married for 14 years and have two young children. My husband was diagnosed as bi-polar several years ago and his work history has been very unstable. We’ve been trying to negotiate a separation agreement for over a year now. He left the home in January 2010 and moved to another state for a job that only lasted 2 months. He left with little discussion and I said it was over. I should have moved to get separation paperwork done quickly…stupid me. He came back to the home and I didn’t know what I could legally do and said he could only stay for a short period until he found another place to live. Now, he is refusing to leave the house and has not been working or looking for a job. He decided to go back to college full-time January 2011. He has received financial aid assistance but isn’t contributing to any bills. He is playing the stay at home mom taking the kids to school and then going to school himself while I pay for everything with no help. He doesn’t do anything around the house and doesn’t help financially. He’s just using me for a free place to live. He received from January 2011 to current $12,333.70 in finanical aid refunds and I haven’t seen a cent. Am I intitled to any of his financial aid refunds (loans and grants)? Will I be responsible for repayment of the loans that are in his name and any medical bills that are in his name? He is threating if I get a lawyner he will go after alimony, my retirement ($30,000) and 401K ($7,000), which he didn’t contribute to at all. He said he will sign separation agreement if I give him $7,000 equity in house (at this time is probably everything), I keep debt 5,400 and he doesn’t pay child support until he’s out of college 2014. My income is $43,000 a year. His mother lives a block away, so he could stay with her but won’t. Don’t know what to do and really can’t afford a lawyer…need help! Does his offer sound reasonable. Very stressed and tired!
If this aid he is receiving is a loan, then he will have to pay it back, not you. If some of the money eventually is used for the household expenses, it becomes a martial debt, but for now, based on these facts the loan is separate debt. You have the option of filing for a divorce from bed and board, but you need to show that he has committed fault to get this accomplished, such as adultery, cruelty, etc. Your other option is for you and the children to move out, at which point you can file for child support, child custody and equitable distribution if he will not agree to a Separation Agreement. Regarding the offers he has already made to you, I cannot evaluate settlement offers without a full understanding of the case- of course that is beyond the scope of the forum.