Trend: Wives paying maintenance to ex-husbands

On behalf of Stange Law Firm, PC posted in Family Law on Friday, September 28, 2012.

In Missouri, spousal support — also commonly known as alimony — is something that can be permanent. What this means is that unless there is a death, remarriage or a substantial change to circumstance, one ex-spouse could find themselves making payments to their ex for years and years.

Over the past few years, there has also been a shift in just who is paying alimony. As more and more women work, many are also climbing the corporate ladder and bringing home more money than their husbands. This in turn can mean an ex-wife is paying her ex-husband alimony. Some refer to this as “manimony” or “malimony,” but the truth is that it’s exactly the same as the spousal support men pay to women. There’s just a shift now in who is paying and who is receiving.

One woman recently shared her story. She had married her husband when she was 22 years old. They were still in college and had no money. A friend even made her wedding dress. However, years later the woman became quite successful. At one point she was making six figures a year and her husband was earning about half of that. So, when 19 years later the couple decided to divorce, she found herself having to pay him $1,500 a month in spousal support.

In this case, the woman is not bitter about having to pay alimony and seems to understand why this is fair to her ex-husband. But, in many cases ex-spouses are not as calm when it comes to paying spousal support.

In Missouri, there is no guarantee that a person will have to pay alimony after a divorce. There are also no guidelines for alimony. This means that it’s important to make a compelling case for why alimony is needed or not needed, and what the stipulations should be.

Source: ABC, “More wives paying husbands alimony after divorce,” Darla Miles,

  • Our firm handles alimony cases on behalf of those who will be on the paying or receiving side of spousal support. To learn more, please visit our St. Louis spousal support page.

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