If my wife offers me compensation to delay filing a separate maintenance and support agreement regarding to divorce so that she can retain health care coverage, is it legal?

We have been married for 7 years and I am a retired military person. We were not married prior to my retirement. She is self-employed and has a pre-existing condition of cancer. She will probably not be able to purchase adequate health care coverage. Can I legally accept this money for agreeing to delay filing for divorce?

Asked on August 25, 2011 South Carolina


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

I have been trying to figure out if this set of facts can give rise to either insurance fraud charges or bribery charges or any other criminal proceeding here.  An attorney can not advise you to perpetrate a fraud in an insurance company or accept compensation to do so.  Now that being said, it would be necessary to read the agreement that you have between you and know if the delay in filing does anything to the time frame required under your state law. Is this just s legal separation or an actual divorce proceeding? Also, is your wife entitled to any type of transitional health care coverage (like COBRA for civilian personnel's spouses there is a military version of the same)?  Because her pre-existing condition may not be able to exclude her from coverage under the law.   Good luck to you both.

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