WV Alimony Factors: Education and a Spouse Who Foregoes Opportunities

Hello everyone. It’s Chris, Pritt back again with a new topic in West Virginia divorce. This discussion is a continuation of our series on the alimony factors under West Virginia law. Today We’re going to be analyzing two more factors.

First, let’s discuss how the education level of an individual factors into an alimony decision. So let’s say that you have one person who is a medical doctor, and the other person has little to no formal education. Maybe they have a high school diploma and that’s it. Under those circumstances, the person who is the medical doctor is that is going to be weighed against them in terms of whether they should be required to pay some sort of alimony. That factor would be in favor of the person who has far less education. Now, the closer you get to the education level of the people that are involved, then the less likely it’s going to weigh into the decision. For example, let’s say that you have one person with a bachelor’s degree and the other person has a master’s degree. Well, it’s not going to weigh as much as opposed to a person who has significantly greater education in terms of any kind of formal education. So that’s going to be how that factor is weighed.

The next factor that we’re going to be talking about is whether a person has foregone or postponed opportunities for various reasons. So, in the previous example that we gave, let’s say we still have one person who is a medical doctor and the other person decided to stay at home with the kids. On the other hand, maybe the other person decided to work a lot while the other person was going to medical school, while at the same time, even while the person was working, they could have gone and gotten a master’s degree. They’ve been working the whole time to put the other person through medical school. Now, clearly, that person has forgone or postponed various opportunities. Alternatively, what might’ve happened is that person might have delayed opportunities. So to speak that person sacrificed a lot for the person who has the education. Maybe the person who made these sacrifices wanted to go to medical school or go back and get some sort of advanced degree but they didn’t. That factor would be a major consideration for a court under the circumstances.

That consists of today’s topic. If you have any questions at all, feel free to give us a call at (304) 720 4412 or email us at chris@prittlaw.com.Pritt CTA (1).png