Skip to main content

I deduct parts from my support check, but can I charge my ex labor fees for work I did to our marital home?

Woodbridge, NJ |

We are divorced. We both own the house. As part of the divorce, the house is to be sold. To close permits, the inspector has me installing some plumbing. To do so, I need to tape/spackle the walls and lay the floor tile. Needless to say, it takes up my personal time. Can I charge her (half) for labor as well as parts?

+ Read More

Attorney answers 3


If your ex-wife will not agree to you charging for both labor and parts, I recommend that you just have it done by a 3rd party professional, who should give you a written invoice. You should each pay 50% of the professional's bill from the house sale proceeds.

If she won't agree to that either, you could just deduct her half from her support, understanding that she could then take you to court.

DISCLAIMER The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. We invite you to contact us and welcome your calls, letters and electronic mail. Please do not send any confidential information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established.


If there is a court ordered support obligation you are required to satisfy the same in full. You have no right to deduct anything from such a court ordered support obligation absent your ex agreeing.

As for the costs and expenses associated with bringing your improving your home so that the same can be sold, if a Judge was asked to rule whether you have a monetary claim against your ex for the labor you supply it is very unlikey that a Judge would grant you any such relief. Accordingly, absent your ex's consent, if you are opposed to contributing the labor for free, you should hire a 3rd party to complete the labor as the prior attorney who posted a response had suggested.

Kenneth A. White, Esq.

The Answer provided was based on the limited information provided, and represents information based on the law in general, not a legal opinion that can be relied upon. Before a formal legal opinion can be offered I would need an opportunity to review all possible relevant facts and circumstances. You cannot rely on the advice of an attorney given over the internet. The exact facts of your sitaution, including facts which you have not mentioned in your question, may completely change the opinion that is being offered. Please be aware that the above comments are neither protected by attorney-client privilege, nor may the same be the basis for a malpractice lawsuit.


Agreeing with the above posts, I would only add that if you can do the work yourself, that is simple and effective and essentially free. If you wish to have someone else do it, I would say that speaking with the ex first about doing so would probably save you trouble and money if she refuses to contribute tot he cost.

Can't find what you're looking for?

Post a free question on our public forum.

Ask a Question

- or -

Search for lawyers by reviews and ratings.

Find a Lawyer