One of the questions that most spouses tend to find answers when divorcing is on spousal support. In many relationships, one partner is often worth significantly more than the other in strictly financial terms. It is common to find one spouse working in a high paying job while the other is taking care of the children back at home. The source of wealth could be from a family or from wealthy relatives. It is a common thing to find the less earning spouse asking the court during a divorce case to order the higher earning spouse to pay the other monthly support. In this article, we will take you through the hot discussion on the topic of whether it is possible to waive your right to spousal support in Washington state.
In Washington, during a divorce, the marital estate is divided fairly between the two spouses. By marital property we mean assets that includes all income earned by a husband or wife during the marriage, all property acquired with a spouse’s income during the marriage, and any property acquired with joint or marital funds during the marriage.
A lower-earning spouse may request the judge to order the higher earning spouse to pay them spousal maintenance. Spousal maintenance, also known as alimony can be likened to child maintenance support payments, however, in this case, they are meant to a spouse and not a child. Unlike child support, the parties to a marriage can agree to give up their right to receive spousal maintenance payments.
First and foremost, spouses can create pre and post-nuptial agreements as such agreements can go a long way in waiving the spousal support. The beauty about the pre-and post-nuptial agreements is that they clearly define the percentage of the wealth each spouse is entitled to in the event that the marriage should end. The beauty about the family law in Washington that governs divorce cases is that the court will allow a spouse to waive his or her right to support so long as the waiver is made knowingly, willingly, and without duress or intimidation. However, for the waiver to be valid, it needs to be in writing, and must be signed by both parties. In addition to making the waiver in writing, one needs to get an attorney to explain the agreement to the person signing up his or her rights, and the waiver should include a listing of each of the parties’ assets, debts, and income.
However, it is good to note that the agreement should be made by both parties. The court will ensure that every partner gets a fair deal to avoid the cases of one spouse having a hard time catering to their needs while paying the spousal support.