Type of Case: Equitable Distribution, Alimony, Child Custody, and Child Support.
Case Result: Consent Order resolving all issues
County: Guilford County
Our family attorney helped a working mother in Greensboro who separated from her husband back in 2016.
Our client and her husband did not file this action in court until late 2019. Thus, there was a lot of co-mingling funds in that 3-year period of separation, which made things a bit confusing when it came time to value everything.
On the date of separation, the client was making 100k more than her husband and recently started working at a job making 100k a year. But her current job is only a contracting position for 6-12 months with no guarantee of renewal. When the parties separated back in 2016, the husband moved to Boston to start a new job. Our client continued to live in the marital home with the minor child and with the defendant paying for the utilities and mortgage from Boston.
Fighting for Alimony as a Working Mother
The biggest challenge our attorney faced in this family law case was securing alimony for our client.
Our client has a very specialized degree. Because of this, it is hard for her to find jobs in Greensboro. Yet, she stayed because she wanted her daughter to be able to finish school in Greensboro. Unfortunately, this has made it difficult to stabilize her career.
She has had to accept limited contracting positions and teach courses as an adjunct professor. But, nothing with any consistency. Our client also has had a history of depression and anxiety, so this further exacerbated her need for alimony and support.
Unfortunately, our client was fighting an uphill battle. On the date of separation, she was the breadwinner of the family, making over 100k while her husband was unemployed. Since the separation, however, our client had lost her job. She had no choice but to take inconsistent contracting jobs here and there. The opposing party moved to Boston to start a new career, which meant our client had to stay in Greensboro so their daughter could finish school.
Because of how much she was making on the date of separation, she had the potential to receive no alimony. This really scared our client because of the inconsistency in keeping jobs. She wanted to have the security net if needed. Additionally, on the date of mediation, our client was working a job making 100K, but it had no guarantee to last past 6 months. The client also wanted to guarantee her daughter would finish school in Greensboro. She didn’t want to risk the opposing party randomly deciding to move her to Boston, for instance.
On the day of mediation, our attorney and her client went through the client’s job history with the mediator. They explained how our client was here in Greensboro and limited because of the actions of the defendant. Our attorney was prepared to take the matter to court if necessary.
Another hurdle our client faced was determining the amount of credit given to the opposing party for paying down the mortgage of the home our client had been living in since the date of the separation. They claimed he should get complete credit for paying the mortgage down, however, he was using funds to pay that mortgage from a joint account that both parties were contributing to.
Client Awarded 7 Years of Alimony
Our family attorney knew that she had landed a great deal for her client when she ended up securing the client alimony for 7 years. If the case had gone to court, it’s possible the judge would have sided with the opposing party’s argument, leaving our client without any alimony. Our client was very happy to have that security net in place.
Now our client has a guarantee her daughter will be able to finish high school here in Greensboro. She has a safety net in place for 7 years in case she loses her job. She’s secured child support until the minor child turns 18. And, she got her name off any marital debt while also making sure her house will get sold shortly while splitting the proceeds 50/50. (This was another item our client wanted to guarantee from the onset so she could move into something smaller with her daughter ASAP.)
Recently Separated from Your Spouse?
When asked about what advice she’d give to working mothers or working fathers in a similar situation, our attorney said the following:
I think harping on the fact the court will look to values as of the date of separation is really key. This was a challenging case because so much time had passed since the spouses officially separated and the values were extremely different.
I would advise clients, if possible, to try to get everything resolved with the marital estate right around the time of separation. That will help them have a clearer picture of everything because the figures should not be drastically different when it comes time to divide everything up.
Contact a Family Law Attorney Today
Every family situation is unique. At Dummit Fradin, our family law attorneys will take the time to understand your specific needs when it comes to your family law matters. Contact us today to get started. We have offices in Winston-Salem, Greensboro, and High Point.