# Life of married couple in your culture ?

1. Aug 22, 2011

### jatoji

How can a bride get all money of her husband in your culture ? Is it possiblethat he should hide his bank account or maybe he creates 2 accounts, one is let known and the other is not; after each payment he has got from work, he withdraws half then deposits it into the other account. Being a couple, we can not hide anything, if she complains her relatives are in hospital and need some money while she doesn't have, how can he refuse to share ? What if her story is not true ? Should he investigate ? Going through everything like that doesn't seem true love ? In North America, how can a couple live through with this ? During a dirvorce, if one claims to pay for most things in the house, and the other also claims the same ?

2. Aug 22, 2011

### KingNothing

Even assets in "private" accounts can be argued for in divorce court. The simplest solution is to just never be married - which young people are doing increasingly.

In the US, there is what is called "alimony payments". Basically if you make $70K a year and your spouse has become accustomed to living his/her own life on a$30K personal income, you might be court-ruled to continue paying him/her that amount of money.

Be careful of the gender roles you are projecting - US laws are written the same for either sex, even though practically they are not always enforced that way.

IMO, trust is earned. There is a level of investigation that is reasonable, and a level that is not. If you are asking for money you should probably be ready to answer at least a few questions. Trust is earned and I believe in the healthiest of relationships, over time the questions become less necessary.

3. Aug 22, 2011

### Staff: Mentor

Alimony or spousal support is no longer automtic, it varies by state, by length of marriage, and is usually capped if it is awarded at all.

My first marriage was in Texas and lasted about 13 years. Although my husband did not insist, I did pay him spousal support until we sold our house. He wanted to live in it and couldn't afford the payments, so I allowed him to live there until I re-married and needed to clean up loose ends, about 18 months.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alimony#Factors_affecting_alimony

And then there is community property.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Community_property

Last edited: Aug 22, 2011
4. Aug 22, 2011

### Staff: Mentor

Our culture is very different from yours. A husband or wife has no obligation to pay for relative's expenses here. During a divorce if either spouse is thought to have hidden assets a search can be done to find hidden accounts. Claims of who paid what will be resolved by financial records. If you don't have the financial records to back yourself up, then you can't prove anything.

5. Aug 22, 2011

It's also interesting to note that adultery is a crime in some states - punishable by death in Michigan, and a fine of $10 in Maryland. 6. Aug 22, 2011 ### lisab Staff Emeritus :rofl: If she pays$20, can a woman have two boyfriends in Maryland?

7. Aug 22, 2011

My friend has a mistress in Maryland and his only punishment was he had to pay $10. I stayed faithful to my wife and I got life without parole. 8. Aug 22, 2011 ### BobG Divorce follows state laws, so there's a lot of variation. In most states, expect all the assets and debts to be split about 50/50 since marriage is a partnership. It's assumed both parties agreed to what role each plays in the marriage - in other words, if the agreement was that one works while one sits at home watching soap operas, then that's the agreement and they share equally in what that arrangement provides. (If you didn't like that arrangment, then you would have divorced sooner, before that many assets were acquired.) There's differences between community property states/equitable distribution states; exceptions for property earned before marriage, etc, plus each individual situation is different, so the 50/50 split is just a rough idea. Alimony isn't automatic anymore. That idea that the husband has to maintain the wife's standard of living until she remarries is mostly outdated. Instead, the lower earning spouse can get alimony for a limited amount of time based on the difference in expected incomes and the length of marriage. Unless one spouse has a disability or some other legitimate reason, they're going to be expected to work, so expected income will at least be full time minimum wage. Short marriages have no alimony to short periods of alimony, while longer marriages could result in alimony ranging from half the duration of the marriage to lifetime alimony (or at least until retirement). The amount could be as little as 0$, but usually ranges from around 25% of the difference in expected income up to as much as 50% of the difference in expected incomes. It depends first on need. Once both spouses are above the need threshhold, the courts start considering fairness. If the higher income spouse has a low income, they have a good chance of paying up to 50% of the difference in incomes (since there's just not enough money for both to live decently, they suffer equally). If the higher income spouse has a high income and the low earning spouse is above the need threshhold, they'll pay a low percentage of the difference in incomes (unless the lower earning spouse has a good lawyer that can show how much the spouse sacrificed their career, the courts will usually feel fair is the spouse that makes the money gets to keep it). Once again, alimony varies greatly by state (it's hard to get alimony for any length of time in Texas, while Illinois has some old school ideas about marriage).

Both parents are expected to contribute to their kids upbringing in time, housing, food, health care, money, etc. The parent that has custody the most is contributing more in time, housing, food, etc, so the other parent can expect to contribute more monetarily. If custody is 50/50, then the higher earning spouse can expect to contribute more monetarily. This is where most states roughly equalize the income of both spouses, since the kids should theoretically experience similar lifestyles regardless of which parent they're staying with (in practice, the custodial parent usually suffers more financially than the non-custodial parent because of calling off work for sick kids, inability to move to a new state for improved career opportunities, etc). Once again, states vary wildly. (For example, Illinois seems to assume the male will always be the higher earning spouse and that the female will always be the custodial parent. As a result, a father with 50/50 custody could still pay child support even when he earns less than the mother, since child support is based solely on the 'non-custodial' parent's income; with the 'custodial' parent's income ignored completely. Men should never divorce in Illinois, while stay at home moms should never divorce in Texas, but most states reach some fair enough settlement, even if sometimes painful for both spouses.)

And adultery isn't punishable for all intents and purposes regardless of what's written in the books. Adultery usually has practically no impact on the financial settlement, if any at all. Courts (and lawyers) don't like dealing with divorcing couples' personal lives anymore. Divorce is just a way of dividing assets, debts, and kids.

Last edited: Aug 22, 2011
9. Aug 22, 2011

### Staff: Mentor

In the case of my first husband, even though he was due to get a huge inhertitance, I had no claim to that money and it did not figure into my financial obligation to him "now". And then there are pre-nups to prohibt spouses from claiming previous/exisiting wealth of a spouse, earnings during the marriage, etc...

10. Aug 22, 2011

### BobG

There's lots of exceptions that lawyers can find whenever the amount of money is huge (hence the need for pre-nups, etc), but inheritances usually aren't joint property as long as the person receiving it makes sure they keep it separate, which is easy to do legally, but kind of hard to do tactfully. Once the inheritance starts getting mixed into the couples' joint finances, it pretty much becomes joint property.

11. Aug 22, 2011

### KingNothing

So, what is the best state to get divorced in?

12. Aug 22, 2011

### lisab

Staff Emeritus
The state of bliss. Then nothing matters.

13. Aug 22, 2011

### I like Serena

Ah, but people in that state wouldn't get divorced, would they?
So that would be the best state to not get divorced.

14. Aug 22, 2011

### KingNothing

Heh. I would like to know though - I should start planning this out ahead of time.

15. Aug 23, 2011

### BobG

For normal people, the things one has to do to prepare for a future divorce kind of defeats the purpose of getting married in the first place. (But there do seem to be a lot of abnormal people that make you wonder how they got anyone to marry them in the first place.)

For normal people, the best precaution is to marry someone with a compatible lifestyle and compatible values.

There's nothing wrong with a person wanting to help her family when they're in need, even if there's no "obligation" to pay for relatives expenses. There's nothing wrong with a person wanting to put their own family (wife, husband, kids) first before the constant problems of loser relatives. The problem is if only one person thinks taking care of extended family is important and the other thinks it's an unreasonable burden. They should be compatible in the things they think are important.

When they suddenly find out they didn't really talk things out as well as they should have before they got married, you get a dilemma like the original poster. Both are "right" in their values, but that just means both will wind up feeling like they're a bad person when they stand up for their own values (of course, the person helping their relatives might wind up feeling a little less bad since the relatives they're helping will probably give them a lot of moral support).

Last edited: Aug 23, 2011