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What does the law consider marital abandonment?

Philadelphia, PA |

My husband and I have been married for 12 years. It was agreed upon by both parties, and suggested by him, that I stop working in 2007 to care for the needs of my daughter who was diagnosed with depression. Now with no job, little personal savings, depending on him for medical insurance and payment of household bills, he has decided to leave in 3 months and file for divorce. What rights do my daughter and I have?

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Attorney answers 1

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All married couples have the right to equitable distribution of the marital property. You may also have the right to alimony, based on the agreement to stop working and care for your daughter. Your minor children also have the right to receive child support.

In the meantime, you may be able to receive alimony while the divorce is proceeding. That is called alimony pendente lite — literally, alimony pending litigation.

It sounds like you have a somewhat complicated legal matter. I would be happy to help you.