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Why you may have to pay manimony when you divorce

If you are a woman facing a Missouri divorce and earn as much as or more than your husband does, you also face the possibility that the court could require you to pay spousal support to your soon-to-be ex-husband. “Manimony,” as this is sometimes called, represents a reasonably recent change in how courts have come to view alimony.

While divorced women traditionally received alimony from their former husbands due to the fact that only the husbands worked outside the home while the wives stayed home, such is no longer necessarily the case.

Most wives and mothers now work outside the home, and many of them have high-paid jobs, often more highly paid than their husbands. In fact, women act as the only or major earner in 40 percent of American households. In addition, over 2 million dads stay home to raise the kids while mom goes to work.

Manimony award factors

Should your divorce become one in which your husband asks for spousal support, the court likely will take into consideration the following factors before ordering you to pay it:

  • The disparity between your and your husband’s current salary or wage
  • The disparity between your and your husband’s potential to earn more
  • The disparity between your and your husband’s educational levels
  • Whether your husband could increase his earning potential by getting further education and/or training
  • How much, if any, your husband contributed to the marriage in nonfinancial ways
  • The length of time you and he have been married

Manimony duration factors

As with any spousal support award, the court likely will not require you to pay manimony to your ex-husband for longer than 10 years maximum, and it could be for a considerably shorter period. For instance, your payments will likely cease once your former husband obtains the education or training the court thinks he requires. They likely also will cease if he remarries.

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