You were a stay-at-home parent for the majority of your 10-year marriage, and now you’ve found yourself in a difficult position. You can return to your career, but you’ll be starting 10 years behind others of your age in your industry. You may not have as much savings or retirement to rely on. You might have to go back to school for more training, too.
On top of that, you’ve always been the primary caretaker of your children, so they’re asking to stay with you. You may not be able to return to full-time work if you have to take care of your children every day.
What can you do? It seems like this divorce might cost you everything and leave you in a tough financial situation.
Stay-at-home parents should look into spousal support
One of the first things that stay-at-home parents should look into is getting spousal support. Spousal support may be used temporarily or permanently, and it can provide you with the boost in income that you need while you go to school, get started back in your career or work out how to work part-time while supporting your children, too.
Stay-at-home parents may be able to negotiate a larger portion of assets
Stay-at-home parents are sometimes at a disadvantage financially, so now is the time to negotiate for a fair share of assets. You can negotiate to keep the family home, for a larger portion of your savings, for a portion of your spouse’s pension or retirement and for other assets that will help you maintain stability as you adjust to living as a single parent.
Remember, if you do decide to take on your children’s care the majority of the time, your ex-spouse will also be expected to pay child support. Some of that support can be put toward necessities for your kids, like schooling, housing, food and clothing. You don’t have to do this on your own, and there will be financial options to help support you.
If you’re not sure how to move forward with your divorce, don’t wait to get help. The right agreements could help you get more out of your marital assets.