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Divorcing when wives out-earn their husbands

On Behalf of | Jun 20, 2017 | Divorce

There has been a rise in income inequality in Kentucky and the rest of the United States. This disparity also results in couples consisting of two parties of different socioeconomic statuses, which can lead to a divorce down the road.

Some sociologists have pointed out a rise in “associative mating”, which is choosing a partner who is similar to oneself in terms of education, earning or other social identities. As most marriages today bring together people of similar backgrounds, this often means strong dual-career partnerships. It is still more common for husbands to earn more than wives, but many wives are beginning to earn more than their husbands as the gender pay gap shrinks.

Many dual-career couples struggle with dividing housework and child care alongside demanding careers with long hours for both partners. This is especially true when women with high-powered careers or who earn more than their husbands continue to carry the majority of housework or child-care burdens.

When couples reach a crisis and decide to end their marriage, there are certain points to consider for women in a higher net-worth position than their husbands. Honest and open communication about finances can help to make a divorce easier or forestall it entirely, as marital resentment can grow without transparency. In addition, a prenuptial agreement can help to protect assets, especially if one or both partnersare already well-established in their careers before starting their marriage.

In a contested divorce it is important for each party to have separate legal counsel. A lawyer can provide critical advice about the division of assets, child support and alimony, and can often take the lead in negotiating an equitable settlement agreement with the other party.