More Women Are Paying Alimony Than Ever

Serving Families Throughout Palm Beach Gardens

According to a recent survey of the 1,650 lawyers in the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, there has been a growing number of women having to pay alimony and child support after divorce. 54% of surveyed attorneys reported an increase of mothers paying child support over the last three years, and 45% of surveyed attorneys reported an increase in the number of women paying alimony.

This new trend may be seen as a sign of women’s growing earning power despite gender wage gaps, but for women having to pay child support and/or alimony it may not be the easiest pill to swallow.

AAML president Madeline Marzano-Lesnevich commented on a case where she represented a husband who stood to receive alimony from his wife after the divorce. The husband had a very expensive hobby which his wife did not agree with. The wife brought home a seven-figure income while her husband made substantially less.

Marzano-Lesnevich successfully argued that the husband’s entertainment expenses were part of his lifestyle when calculating the monthly alimony he would receive. Marzano-Lesnevich stated, “Many women, no matter how educated, how professional, how modern they are, are surprised to learn that they might have to pay alimony. It’s something that has been ingrained for generations that fathers pay alimony.”

In 1960, only 11% of households reported having a woman as the primary provider. As of 2013, the Pew Research Center reported that 40% of households now have women as the primary provider, with the number continuing to climb.

In 2016, 31.4% of single fathers with custody of their children received spousal support, as did 52.3% of single mothers, with the average amount of support paid being approximately $329. Women have been responsible for paying spousal support since the Supreme Court ruled in 1979 that alimony payments were gender-neutral.

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John Schutz

John Schutz

Partner at John F. Schutz, P.L.

Representing clients exclusively in family law cases for the past 24 years, Mr. Schutz is widely regarded as a marital and family law expert. He is Board Certified in marital and family law by The Florida Bar. As a Fellow of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML), Mr. Schutz is committed to elevating the standards and improving the practice of family law.

John Schutz

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