How Can I Protect My Rights as a Stay-At-Home Parent During a Divorce?

divorce papers closeup

If you are going through a divorce as a stay-at-home parent, you may be worried about how you can protect yourself and fight for a fair divorce arrangement. After all, your spouse probably has more resources at their disposal, and divorces can be an expensive endeavor. Our Bergen County divorce attorneys can help you though, whether you are seeking a fair divorce arrangement or you are curious about how you can best prepare yourself for life after divorce.

How Can a Stay-At-Home Parent Afford a Fair Divorce?

As a stay-at-home parent, you may worry about the expense of a divorce. If your spouse was the breadwinner in the family, they would obviously have more money to spend. Could they just steamroll you and force you to accept an agreement that is favorable to them?

Things do not have to go that way. You and your spouse can opt for less expensive methods of divorce, like mediation or collaborative divorce. If going to court is the only option, you can request that your spouse pays for your legal fees. A court can grant this so that both sides have legal representation that they can rely on.

Will I Receive Alimony Because I Was a Stay-At-Home Parent?

It is likely that you will receive alimony during the divorce process and after it is completed since your working spouse has more resources than you do. You could receive:

Temporary alimony: This is granted to low-earning or unemployed spouses during the divorce. It is supposed to help with living expenses while a final agreement is ironed out.

Permanent alimony: If your marriage lasted for a long time and it is unlikely that you will be able to rejoin the workforce, your spouse could be ordered to pay alimony with no set end date.

Rehabilitative alimony: This alimony is meant to cover your expenses as you apply for jobs, enroll in a job training program, or go to school. This alimony bridges the gap between your spouse supporting you in marriage and you being able to support yourself once divorced.

How Can I Prepare for Life After the Divorce?

You can do a few things now to make the transition to post-divorce life less stressful. You should:

  • Learn what kinds of bank accounts, retirement accounts, and other assets you and you spouse own
  • Consider getting your own credit card, for emergencies and building up your own credit
  • Copy any financial or marriage-related documents
  • Think about your post-divorce living arrangements

Finally, do not neglect your mental health throughout this process. Lean on family and friends when you can, and remember that it will be difficult to be there for your kids if you do not sometimes focus on yourself.

Talk to Our Legal Team Today

So if you are a stay-at-home parent who is worried about how to approach divorce proceedings, contact Townsend, Tomaio & Newmark. We can schedule a consultation and tell you more about what our experienced attorneys can do for you.

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