My settlement issues

I would like to know how much I am entitled to get or ask for in the separation agreement? Married 12 years with no children of our own. She has daughter from out of wedlock. I put her through school and we started a company that she operates. Gross income in 2009 was over 100K. I have been dependant on her since I formed my/our company that she wouldn’t support in the end. I was forced to get out of business or get out of the house. I gave up the business at a big loss to save the marriage. I found work in my old trade, but the bills/debt were stil so that she reluctantly paid them.
She has now packed up and moved out with the home based business and abandoned me. After 3 different times ending the marriage, I didn’t fight to keep her. My question is, since I put her through school, financially started the business for her to operate, and now can’t aford the monthly bills and debt she left me with, how much can I get in division of debt and property? I am sure the company is marital property and I am entitled to half it’s value. Can I also get Alimony on top of her buying out my share of the company? Would I be forced to sell real property to get debt and or monthly bills more inline with my current income. The mortgage is only a couple of hundred dollars more a month than renting an apartment. I want to keep the real property for myself. She has agreed to sign it over to me as long as I refinance it.

Please help!!

You are entitled to an equitable distribution of the marital property, which is normally 50%. Based on your efforts to build her career you may be entitled to a distribution which is more than 50% in your favor, as well as spousal support.

Thank you for the quick reply. I am very happy with the response so far.

If I may ask another couple of questions.

I have tried in good faith to negotiate taking/keeping more than half of our total debt. I want to keep approximately $160K and she would have only $120K. She wants to get half the value for the real property, but we actually owe more than the tax value on it. Since there is no equity in the real property, do I have to allow her any value of it even if they argue it will appreciate in the future?

We had a certified value set on the company “if sold”. Would I be entitled to more than half of the value of the company since it generates more income than it’s value? How much should I be allowed to get for future growth or profits from her?

She makes more than twice what I make in total income ( my net is $3000 a mth and her net is $8000 a mth). Is there any formula used to calculate alimony? At this time, I cannot meet all the monthly bills that she insist I take. Together, we were able to do many things, and now, I am eating out of a can to help meet my minimum payments each month. God help me if something else comes along. Could you provide a number that I should or could be going for in alimony? I also realize that alimony is taxable income, so I want to get enough to pay the bills “after deducting for taxes”.

Thank you!!

Sorry, I meant total monthly bills before a settlement is killing me. I know she will have to buy me out of my share of the company, and I intend to pay in full enough accounts to be able to afford post separation and divorce debt and bills. I just need to know how to survive now while the process is running.

You may still have equity in the home even if you owe more than the tax value. Often times, homes appraise for more than the value the county assigns. To be sure, an appraisal would be in order. If in fact there is no equity in the home at present, you will not owe her anything if it appreciates after a distribution is made.

Likewise, if the business is distributed to her, you would not be entitled to future earnings in so far as the business itself goes, but an increase in revenue could increase your spouse’s support obligation to you, depending on the circumstances.

There is no specific formula to calculate alimony. It is based on the demonstrated shortfall of the dependant spouse (amount needed to maintain standard of living enjoyed during the marriage less dependant’s income) and the surplus, or ability of the supporting spouse to contribute to that need after paying their reasonable expenses.

In order to figure out how much you need, you will need to find out which federal tax bracket you are in, account for state taxes, and take in to account the taxes you will pay. By way of example, someone in the 28% tax bracket can assume for estimation purposes that they will net 65% of income. 1,000.00 in alimony equates to about $650.