Supported spouse during bankruptcy


Married 3 years ago. Third marriage for both of us. He had 2 kids and I have 3. I supported my spouse, his kids and mine during his bankruptcy. His take home pay during the bankruptcy was less than 300. Technically he makes twice as much as me, but couldn’t contribute to household finances due to his bankruptcy. Now that we’re separated and he’s out of bankruptcy. Supporting everyone completely depleted my savings and credit. Now I am starting over with nothing and he has a clean slate. I would pile to sue for alimony, QDRO, health benefits and legal costs. Am I entitled to that? I’ve heard there’s is such a thing as "restitution " or “bridging the gap alimony”.



You may be able to recoup some of this in equitable distribution as a distributional factor for an unequal division. For alimony purposes, it sounds like during the marriage you were the supporting spouse and he was the dependent. Alimony is based on the classification of a supporting spouse and a dependent spouse, not solely on income discrepancy.

You would be entitled to file a complaint for equitable distribution (which would include division of retirement assets) and possibly alimony although it doesn’t sound like you have a strong claim. If you do file for alimony, you would be able to also ask for attorney’s fees.

Anna Ayscue

Attorney with Rosen Law Firm Cary • Chapel Hill • Durham • Raleigh • Wake Forest

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