What rights does a spouse have if the main ‘provider’ moves out and refuses to pay support?

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What rights does a spouse have if the main ‘provider’ moves out and refuses to pay support?

The main provider for the house has moved out and refuses to provide any assistance for bills, food, etc and has cut off all credit cards and bank account availability.

Asked on May 29, 2018 under Family Law, Ohio

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

If you divorce, you will almost certainly be entitled to spousal support (alimony), at least for several years, if your spouse was the main provider; will get a share of the marital assets (anything and any money owned or acquired during marriage, with a few exceptions); and will get child support if you have children and are the main caregiver. But you have to divorce to get these things; the law does not interefere in couples' internal arrangements, including financial arrangements or living arrangements, while they are married. Only by filing divorce do you give the court power to intervene. In the divorce, there are ways to bring the action on an "emergent"  (think: "urgent" or "emergency") basis to get an order requiring your spouse to pay support during the divorce, to keep things more or less status quo until the resolution of the divorce. A family law attorney can help you do this; you are strongly urged to consult with such a lawyer to explore your rights and options.


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