I cannot turn on the radio or the t.v. without being inundated with political news, slants, and opinions. For some reason, it has all caused me to have an epiphany. I realize that in divorces, there is a very obvious political stance. There are very few liberals in divorce, when financial responsibility is addressed.
Before this offends you, I am not taking a political stance. Rather, the way that cases play out I realized that I have never had a higher paying spouse client simply offer up that he/she will continue to work hard, earn more and more money, and provide for the support of the less financially fortunate spouse forever. Yet, many of these same parties vote for a government that will tax the higher income earners in order to provide funding and programs to those who are less financially fortunate in our country. The lesson I take from this is why can’t we see that family is more important than strangers, when it comes to supporting them?
And, just like in politics, specifics must be considered and the true facts (not fake news) explored. In some cases, taking a position against any maintenance is very much warranted. In others, lots of money can be expended on fighting the amount of maintenance to be paid, which money could have actually gone toward the maintenance payment rather than in addition to the obligation. A realistic approach needs to be taken, wherein the higher earning spouse talks to his/her lawyer about the odds of a maintenance award, amount and duration. There are various packages than can be considered, that benefit each spouse in a different way. Plus, there are some additional positives to maintenance, such as that it is tax deductible to the higher income paying spouse while taxable income to the lower earning payee spouse. The end result is that the government makes less in taxes off the couple, which most people agree is a good thing (be it because it is pro-finances for the couple, or anti-finances for the government, or both).
Child support is less controversial, just like government programs that benefit children. Everyone seems to realize the need and have less resistance. However, the amount can be an issue of discontent. For a payor parent who complains about the amount of support being paid per the presumptive child support guidelines, I like to point out that he or she would be spending way more if primary of the child. Parenting is expensive, and children should not suffer simply because their parents got a divorce. An added benefit of child support, over governmental assistance to child-focused funding, is that it makes a direct impact on a family member versus children of strangers. These are your children you are benefitting, and that is a good thing!
As I finish this, I wonder if I should not have mixed politics and divorce. Again, I hope that I have not offended anyone. Obviously each political party has attractive qualities, and an open mind and acceptance of others’ opinions can lead to far more success than close mindedness standstills. In a divorce, like in politics, more gets accomplished when we work together than against each other. The key is to have realistic expectations, a willingness to see that that the family is continuing just in a different form, and be open to different alternatives.