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Kasare, Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 1301
Experience:  Solicitor, 10 yrs plus experience in civil litigation, employment and family law
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Financial settlement if I leave my husband

Customer Question

I'm married to an alcoholic. If I leave my husband (not divorce, just seperate for now as I need to get out), will he have to support me financially? At least living costs or part of rent? No children involved.


I forgot to add that we have been married for three years. I do work, but only part-time. I wouldn't be able to afford to rent without his help.

Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Kasare replied 2 years ago.
Hi thank you for your question, I will assist you with this, but will need to ask you a few more questions, in order that I may answer you appropriately.

Is there any reason why you do not work full time?

How did you support yourself prior to the marriage?

Is the family home owned or rented? If owned, is it in joint names?

Once you provide the additional information I will be able to answer you fully.

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi there,


Thanks for getting back to me.

I have a son from a previous relationship. He's 9. I don't work full time because I fetch him from school at 3.30 in the afternoons and take him to extra murals, particularly tennis, at which he is very skilled.


My husband is not my son's biological father, but his step-father. He is not even a legal guardian so I'm assuming he has no financial responsibility towards my son. He has been paying for my son's tennis coaching and other bits and pieces since we've been married, and in the three years we were seeing each other before we got married.


I work as a part-time accounts assistant. Previously I worked as a billing systems specialist.


Our home is rented, and in my husband's name. It's expensive, at 2000 pm, and is not something I could pay on my own.


My husband earns 80K pa and is the main breadwinner. I work so I can buy uniforms, books and tennis raquets etc. for my son. It's not enough to cover anything else really.


I'd like to leave, and rent a place for myself and my son, but I can't afford to. Eventually I'd like to get divorced, as I don't think my marriage is saveable, but it's the immediate future I'm worried about.

Being at home with him is destructive and emotionally damaging to both my son and myself.






Expert:  Kasare replied 2 years ago.
Hi Lisa

Thank you for coming back to me with the additional information.

I am afraid the advice is not going to be what you wanted to hear, however, there may be a small chance of receiving some spousal maintenance, but this is likely to be only for a short period of time, given the length of the marriage.

There is no automatic entitlement to spousal maintenance. A spouse only has to pay maintenance to the other if the circumstances justify it and the court will take into account all the issues, including the earnings or earning capacity of each spouse, if you have become financially dependant upon your spouse during the marriage (i.e. by giving up work etc) and the length of the marriage.

In this instance, where there are no children together, one would normally expect a clean break order (i.e. no spousal maintenance) or else maintenance limited for a specific period of time in order to allow for readjustment.

However, this is something that would be decided by the Court following an application for divorce, not on separation.

I am afraid, upon separation, unless you have an agreement on a period of maintenance or commence divorce proceedings and seek an interim maintenance order, then he does not have to pay anything to support you.

I would also advise you to seek face to face advice to assist you with any interim application.

I am sorry this is not the advice you were wanting to receive, but this is the legal position.

If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to ask.
Kasare, Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 1301
Experience: Solicitor, 10 yrs plus experience in civil litigation, employment and family law
Kasare and other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thanks. I appreciate your professional opinion.

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
HiJust to add to the summary given above if the biological father of your child is not paying maintenance then you can in fact claim child maintenance.Clare

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