In Washington and elsewhere, spousal support is often thought of something only granted to women as part of their marital dissolution settlements. The simple truth of the matter is, this benefit is not just for women. Men who make less than their spouses may also petition the court for maintenance to be included in their divorce settlements.
According to a recent news article in The New York Times, the number of women making more than their spouses or significant others is on the rise. In the 1980s, in 18 percent of all couples, women were to top earners. That number has increased to 25 percent, according to Pew Research Center.
Money is a big issue in most marriages. Men still like to be viewed as the breadwinner. That is still considered the social norm. According to the same news article, in couples where the women are the breadwinners, both spouses tend to lie about their income to friends and family. They are also likely to have more fights about money and expected marital roles.
At the end of the day, when it comes to divorce, it does not matter who makes more in the relationship. The breadwinner, whether male or female, may have to pay spousal support as part of the dissolution agreement. Washington residents who are going through the divorce process and who believe they are entitled to spousal support can turn to their legal counsel for assistance in achieving it. It is not granted in every case, but it is certainly something that may be worth pursuing.