It’s been estimated that nearly 30% of married women outearn their husbands. That number is predicted to grow in the coming years. This can be attributed to the fact that more women than men have at least a college degree, and women are increasingly getting into previously male-dominated (and higher-paying) fields.
These women, however, still report that they handle more of the child care and household chores than their husbands. One surprising statistic is that mothers today spend more time taking care of their children than women did back in the 1960s when far mothers (and women in general) worked outside the home.
Support payments and equitable distribution of assets
So what does all of this mean when these women who are the primary breadwinners in the family divorce? If their husbands seek spousal support, it may be granted by the court since the law tends to protect the lesser-earning spouse in a divorce by ordering alimony – at least until they can start earning enough to support themselves.
It’s understandable that some divorcing women resent having to pay spousal and perhaps even some child support to their spouse if they believe that their husbands didn’t pull their weight in caring for the home and the kids while they were together.
A woman who outearns her husband may not only have to fight to keep from having to turn over a significant part of their paycheck to their ex each month. She may have to fight harder to get an equitable distribution of the assets that the couple accumulated over the years – in no small part because of her salary. She may even have to fight to avoid having to pay her husband’s legal fees for the divorce.
Unfortunately, too many women don’t feel like engaging in a long, contentious battle. They may give in just to get the divorce over with and be able to move on with their life. That’s why it’s crucial to have experienced legal guidance and a divorce team that includes financial and tax professionals. They can help you ensure that you get a fair settlement, even if it takes a little more time and work.