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Is It Easier If You're Poor & Don't have Kids?


Separation and Divorce Considering ending your marriage? Going through a divorce? Let us know!

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Old 2nd January 2018, 3:59 PM   #1
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Is It Easier If You're Poor & Don't have Kids?

I'm just starting to look into this, and from a quick sweep of these threads it seems that the two major hassles involved in any separation/divorce scenario are, obviously, the kids and also the division of assets. Does this, however, mean that the situation is easier if neither of these things are an issue?

We don't have children. We have a cat that we both love, and I am fully confident neither of us would ever allow any harm to come to said feline no matter who Mr. Cat ends up going with. We both live check-to-check and split all rent/bills equally. We both make about the same salary. As big city dwellers we don't own any property or cars. I do have a 401K and would fully expect for half of that to go to my (ex) partner, which is fine.

And that's all, folks.

So is it really that easy? What are some hidden traps I'm not seeing?

Of course, with this type of situation there is always the "We're too poor to afford our own rent" situation, but if we're not happy then we're not happy. I'm fully prepared to enter a roommate situation or live in a less attractive hood.

At least then I'd be free.
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Old 2nd January 2018, 4:02 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by Brian Eno's Cousin View Post
I'm just starting to look into this, and from a quick sweep of these threads it seems that the two major hassles involved in any separation/divorce scenario are, obviously, the kids and also the division of assets. Does this, however, mean that the situation is easier if neither of these things are an issue?

We don't have children. We have a cat that we both love, and I am fully confident neither of us would ever allow any harm to come to said feline no matter who Mr. Cat ends up going with. We both live check-to-check and split all rent/bills equally. We both make about the same salary. As big city dwellers we don't own any property or cars. I do have a 401K and would fully expect for half of that to go to my (ex) partner, which is fine.

And that's all, folks.

So is it really that easy? What are some hidden traps I'm not seeing?

Of course, with this type of situation there is always the "We're too poor to afford our own rent" situation, but if we're not happy then we're not happy. I'm fully prepared to enter a roommate situation or live in a less attractive hood.

At least then I'd be free.
Well, of course it's easier because you don't have to buy as much food or clothing, but it won't be EASY because you still have to pay rent/mortgage, groceries, utilities, cable, etc. all on your own. THAT is the expensive part, not just having children. They just add to it.

JMO as a divorced mom of two teens .
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Old 2nd January 2018, 4:44 PM   #3
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It's cheapest when you have an uncontested divorce and you both agree on how your splitting your assets before you contact an attorney, or better yet you do the paperwork / court filings yourselves and skip the lawyers entirely. It's when you get Lawyers involved is when things get expensive quickly. If she's angry at you and wants to get revenge, she can fight your over every household item, so she makes her demands known to her lawyer, her lawyer tells you lawyer, your lawyer tell you, you give a response. It ends up costing you both $300 each in legal fees for that $20 item, and so on. The only people who win in a bitter divorce is the lawyers.
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Old 2nd January 2018, 4:48 PM   #4
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It's cheapest when you have an uncontested divorce and you both agree on how your splitting your assets before you contact an attorney, or better yet you do the paperwork / court filings yourselves and skip the lawyers entirely. It's when you get Lawyers involved is when things get expensive quickly. If she's angry at you and wants to get revenge, she can fight your over every household item, so she makes her demands known to her lawyer, her lawyer tells you lawyer, your lawyer tell you, you give a response. It ends up costing you both $300 each in legal fees for that $20 item, and so on. The only people who win in a bitter divorce is the lawyers.
So so true. I've seen friends use attorneys when they absolutely do not have to.....or at least can STOP using them at some point in the process, but somehow have in their heads that they have to be used until the end. Every single phone call costs money, no matter what it's about. It's insane.
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Old 2nd January 2018, 4:59 PM   #5
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Divorce is the No 1 reason for filing Bankruptcy.

I know someone who got a divorce after 10 years. They both went to the court house together, gathered up the paper work, went home and divided everything up, went back to the court house and filed the papers then bought each other lunch. Cost was $50 plus lunch.

There's property, finance and children to deal with in most case and sometimes a few misc things depending in the couples circumstances.


Mine was contested where the other party wanted the kids full time, the house and everything in it, 4 cars, alimony, retirement funds, more child support than I make in a month plus me paying off her moms credit cards and a made up loan from her family plus her attorneys fees. 3 years and $60K in legal fees later and that's just my part, I expect the other parties were a bit more than that, Our judge split everything 50/50.

Sometimes it cheaper to keep her.
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Old 2nd January 2018, 5:07 PM   #6
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Thank you this is noted on the lawyer situation. Of course I will try very hard not to get any involved. I will be going into it completely uncontested, and we can work out the furniture etc. I have half a mind to just my partner have everything except for my clothes and half my 401K. With my paychecks I will be able to start putting together a life.

Which leads me to a horrifying question: Can my paychecks be held up during divorce proceedings? Like, if my partner did try to go with a scorched earth lawyer type scene? In the beginning my bi-weekly paychecks will be my lifeline. Without them I'll be sleeping at the office and showering at the gym.
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Old 2nd January 2018, 5:11 PM   #7
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It's *supposed* to be cheaper and less complicated. But.. just make sure your ex-SO doesn't come after you for something in future? There was a story I heard of this older guy where his ex-ex wife tried to go after a portion of his company pension based on the fact that they were married once 30 years ago.
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Old 2nd January 2018, 5:13 PM   #8
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And yes, Mr. Me, it would definitely be cheaper to keep. I've considered that. Worked on it for years and years and years. I'm ready. But I'm sorry that happened you. Does it make you bitter? I just don't want to ever be bitter.
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Old 2nd January 2018, 5:15 PM   #9
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Whoa, JJ, that's scary right there. These are the types of stories that terrify me in a very real way.
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Old 2nd January 2018, 5:16 PM   #10
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I just don't want to ever be bitter.
LOL!! Well, some things you can't control. But for the most part, I believe people are the type of people they have been raised to be. So if you the type of person who is laid back and lets things slide off your back and not bother you too much -- you should be fine.
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Old 2nd January 2018, 5:19 PM   #11
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Whoa, JJ, that's scary right there. These are the types of stories that terrify me in a very real way.

Well, thats just a story. It also might be specific and restricted to the jurisdiction (in this case Ontario) and the particular person's income.
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Old 2nd January 2018, 5:23 PM   #12
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If your court has self-help and you and your spouse agree on things it could very well be that easy, and cheap, depending on who files and how poor they are. The court may also assist with filing fees. Self-help may also recommend free or low-cost mediation which can assist with drafting a settlement agreement.

The main asset is the 401K and making sure that is handled properly. If it's substantial (I use the 1% rule regarding legal fees on specific assets), get legal advice on it, or 1K per 100K of imputed value. 3-4 hours of lawyer time on a deal like that can turn over a lot of stones. Don't like them but I like preserving the sweat off my brow more, as should you regarding yours.

Everything varies by jurisdiction but your court will have the basics and you can start there. Good luck!
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Old 2nd January 2018, 5:25 PM   #13
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This should be uncontested. The only think is the 401k. And unless that is a huge sum, plenty of penalties will be had to split it.

My uncontested divorce was 700.00. she didn't want half my 401k.

No lawyers, paid a service to file paperwork
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Old 2nd January 2018, 5:26 PM   #14
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Gotcha'.

So, it seems that it actually is probably easier with no money and no kids as long as you are willing to struggle for a little bit while making a new life for yourself.

You know what else terrifies me? Social media. I don't use it personally, but what if my partner goes on a rampage on there and slanders my name far and wide? To quote The National, "Put it on me, I really don't care, it's a foregone conclusion." I really wish I could think that way. Like The National. But i can't. That aspect is scary. I bet there's some horror stories about that type of thing on here, huh?
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Old 2nd January 2018, 5:31 PM   #15
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Thanks Stagger and Carhill. I'm gaining confidence and wouldn't be in this fine place without you.
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