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Understanding Family Law

One of the questions that most spouses tend to find answers when divorcing is on spousal support. In most marriages, you will find one partner being financially stable than the other. Due to the differences in the finances of the partners, one spouse may have secured a high paying job as the other stay at home with the children. In addition, one spouse can get wealth from their family or inherit it from a relative. 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. When you want to understand more on family law; you should consider reading this article to the end since it discusses whether a spouse can waive their right to spousal support in Washington state.

In Washington, during a divorce, the marital estate is divided fairly between the two spouses. According to family law in Washington, marital estate 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 attained using 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. If you are finding it hard understanding the spousal maintenance; you can compare them to the child support payments; however, the difference here is that the spousal maintenance are directed to spouses, unlike the child payments which are paid to cater for the needs of a child. It is worth noting that the law also allows spouses to 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. In most divorce cases, the court will generally 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. It is worth noting that both parties need to sign the waiver and must be made in writing. 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.

For the waiver to be passed, it needs to be fair and reasonable to 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.

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