Expenses Sheet for mediation? - Talk About Marriage
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post #1 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 09:19 AM Thread Starter
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Expenses Sheet for mediation?

Can anyone offer any advice here.

Have to complete an expenses sheet tonight or this weekend for mediator and he recommends we work on it together so no time wasting with padded expenses in the session to argue about on Monday.

We have one each and there are columns for just about everything you can think of including haircuts, Beauty treatments, eating out, entertainment, vacations etc this will then be used to determine a need for Alimony, was hoping some people on here have some advice on the best way to tackle it?

I will be keeping house so my expenses should be straight forward although it wants expenses broken down into personal and then a portion for Children so how do you allocate a portion of the mortgage for example to children who I will be having 50% of the time? She will be downsizing to a new house about half the size.

Also regarding STBXW haircuts, waxing, nails and various other beauty treatments she has monthly do they really count and if she wants to put all them down should I add every BS expense I have to my list? really don't want to get in a huge conflict with her but really don't feel like any of those items warrant a real expense that i should have to continue to cover going forward.

What has everyone else experience been like in this situation?


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post #2 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 10:05 AM
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Re: Expenses Sheet for mediation?

Doesn't the state have an alimony formula?

I'd be careful about getting into an argument over what's warranted and what's not. If the state doesn't have a formula I'd do it based on a percentage of income.

What she does with the money is her business. What beauty treatments are necessary are no more your business then what beer you want to buy is her business.

This is exactly why child support is formulaic as opposed to listing expenses.....too much opportunity to fight about what's "necessary" by one who doesn't want to pay and the other who wants to get someone else to pay.
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post #3 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 10:21 AM
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Re: Expenses Sheet for mediation?

I negotiated by giving her 0 alimony but paying for her mortgage, car payment, bills, etc for 6 months after divorce. It's all a wash and made it super easy and I got the tax deduction for mortgage interest.

Child Support was a formula, no negotiating there. Just keep telling yourself....divorce is expensive because it's WORTH IT!!! And also remind yourself the kids will get older and this is just temporary... seeing those automatic withdraws every 2 weeks going to her sucks. I just don't look at my bank account anymore.
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post #4 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 10:32 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Expenses Sheet for mediation?

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Originally Posted by lifeistooshort View Post
Doesn't the state have an alimony formula?

I'd be careful about getting into an argument over what's warranted and what's not. If the state doesn't have a formula I'd do it based on a percentage of income.

What she does with the money is her business. What beauty treatments are necessary are no more your business then what beer you want to buy is her business.

This is exactly why child support is formulaic as opposed to listing expenses.....too much opportunity to fight about what's "necessary" by one who doesn't want to pay and the other who wants to get someone else to pay.
Nope there is no state formula to use so it goes on if 'needed' and what is a needed Item, i guess it depends on who you ask? I would say house(suitable) and utility bills, car(suitable), food and equivalent health insurance, I would not class manicures/pedicures, hair coloring or waxing a "needed' item I would class them as a luxury item and if she can't afford them I really don't feel like I should have to be on the hook for it just as I would not expect her to be on the hook for any luxury item I wanted if roles were reversed.

I just feel like this and maybe I need to get over it but she has not helped or supported my career, she has her own career, is educated and still young, will be receiving a decent child support payment with 50% custody and if she wants a divorce then she doesn't get to receive the extra financial benefits of the marriage, stupid comparison but I feel like its the equivalent of me divorcing her and still expecting her to still do my laundry and clean the house (she doesn't anyway just an example)

Sorry for the rant I am just bitter as you can probably tell

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post #5 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 10:38 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Expenses Sheet for mediation?

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Originally Posted by GuyInColorado View Post
I negotiated by giving her 0 alimony but paying for her mortgage, car payment, bills, etc for 6 months after divorce. It's all a wash and made it super easy and I got the tax deduction for mortgage interest.

Child Support was a formula, no negotiating there. Just keep telling yourself....divorce is expensive because it's WORTH IT!!! And also remind yourself the kids will get older and this is just temporary... seeing those automatic withdraws every 2 weeks going to her sucks. I just don't look at my bank account anymore.
@GuyInColorado the child support portion does really not bother me much even though it will be for 12 years , we are going to do 50/50 and she will still receive a healthy amount but Alimony really bothers me, like I mentioned above if you not in the marriage you shouldn't get the benefits of the marriage, the government doesn't just allow you the same tax breaks because you 'used' to get them, I am not going to be receiving any benefits of the former marriage, we both adults and I feel she should taker care of herself once we split.

I am going IC tonight maybe I need to talk about it with him as it is really frustrating me.

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post #6 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 10:43 AM
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Re: Expenses Sheet for mediation?

For things that are really hard to split - don't. People asking for your financial information understand this. The house, the utilities, the car - really hard to split between parent and children.

Food, clothing, maybe phones, should be splittable.

I don't know the purpose of the upcoming meeting, but I'm assuming what you put on this sheet is not final, and there will be discussions.

There are three kinds of business. Your business, my business and God's business. Whose business are you in? -Byron Katie
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post #7 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 10:44 AM
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Re: Expenses Sheet for mediation?

That's weird - the only paperwork our mediator required was a list of all assets (house, cars, retirement funds, stocks/bonds, life insurance policies, 529 plans, etc.) and a list of all liabilities (mortgage and credit cards). We didn't have to go into details on personal expenses like haircuts or dinners out.

And since Husband and I were on the same page and are amicably parting ways, we told the mediator we wanted everything split evenly - what's his was his, what's mine is mine, and what's jointly held is split 50/50.

I opted for no alimony (since that gets taxed) - just child support until each child reaches 18 years old, which was calculated using our state's DSS website. Our mediator did bring up the percentage of income idea for dividing assets, but my career is at a place where my salary will begin skyrocketing over the next 5-7 years (and perhaps even surpass his by that point), so even after child support ends I will not need financial assistance from him in any way. And by then I'll only be 12-13 years from retirement to boot.

I can't help with the alimony question, per se, but I think you should keep the list simple - just assets and liabilities, and leave out personal expenses, since some people just have to suck it up and NOT live in the lifestyle to which they are accustomed (i.e., smaller house, cheaper car, less dinners out, using coupons for groceries, etc.).

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post #8 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 10:50 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Expenses Sheet for mediation?

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Originally Posted by DustyDog View Post
For things that are really hard to split - don't. People asking for your financial information understand this. The house, the utilities, the car - really hard to split between parent and children.

Food, clothing, maybe phones, should be splittable.

I don't know the purpose of the upcoming meeting, but I'm assuming what you put on this sheet is not final, and there will be discussions.
Not final just so we can all look at incoming/outgoing and then decide how much if any Alimony is required and for how long a time period, so I want to make sure i dont screw it up as it will be hard to convince change.

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post #9 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 10:56 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Expenses Sheet for mediation?

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That's weird - the only paperwork our mediator required was a list of all assets (house, cars, retirement funds, stocks/bonds, life insurance policies, 529 plans, etc.) and a list of all liabilities (mortgage and credit cards). We didn't have to go into details on personal expenses like haircuts or dinners out.

And since Husband and I were on the same page and are amicably parting ways, we told the mediator we wanted everything split evenly - what's his was his, what's mine is mine, and what's jointly held is split 50/50.

I opted for no alimony (since that gets taxed) - just child support until each child reaches 18 years old, which was calculated using our state's DSS website. Our mediator did bring up the percentage of income idea for dividing assets, but my career is at a place where my salary will begin skyrocketing over the next 5-7 years (and perhaps even surpass his by that point), so even after child support ends I will not need financial assistance from him in any way. And by then I'll only be 12-13 years from retirement to boot.

I can't help with the alimony question, per se, but I think you should keep the list simple - just assets and liabilities, and leave out personal expenses, since some people just have to suck it up and NOT live in the lifestyle to which they are accustomed (i.e., smaller house, cheaper car, less dinners out, using coupons for groceries, etc.).
We have split most stuff easy enough, I have no issues at all splitting all cash, assets, retirement or anything else, in fact some things she is coming out on top, Child support is a non issue I want to make sure they are taken care off and despite doing 50/50 on out of pocket expenses and extra curriculum and clothes etc I will probably end up picking up 100% with no complaints but something about Alimony and paying for an X wife is just a really hard pill to swallow for me.

I feel like you said she should take care of herself and reduce her cost of living for non essentials and not require any.

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post #10 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 11:04 AM
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Re: Expenses Sheet for mediation?

I know you guys are doing mediation, but I really think you should consult a separate lawyer on this. If she has her own career and has an income where she can support herself, I don't think you should have to play alimony. especially since you are giving her the divorce that she wants and you don't. And if your incomes are relatively similar and you have 50/50 custody, I'm not sure that you should be paying a huge chunk in child support, since you will already be paying to support them for the 50% of the time they are with you. And if the kids are staying on your health insurance, that should count for something (check to see what the cost difference is in your premiums for a single person vs. your current family policy).

These are my personal feelings. I'm not a lawyer and have no kids, so not sure how all this stuff works.


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post #11 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 11:06 AM
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Re: Expenses Sheet for mediation?

Have you spoken to a lawyer about what kind of alimony a judge would likely order?
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post #12 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 11:12 AM
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Re: Expenses Sheet for mediation?

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Nope there is no state formula to use so it goes on if 'needed' and what is a needed Item, i guess it depends on who you ask? I would say house(suitable) and utility bills, car(suitable), food and equivalent health insurance, I would not class manicures/pedicures, hair coloring or waxing a "needed' item I would class them as a luxury item and if she can't afford them I really don't feel like I should have to be on the hook for it just as I would not expect her to be on the hook for any luxury item I wanted if roles were reversed.

I just feel like this and maybe I need to get over it but she has not helped or supported my career, she has her own career, is educated and still young, will be receiving a decent child support payment with 50% custody and if she wants a divorce then she doesn't get to receive the extra financial benefits of the marriage, stupid comparison but I feel like its the equivalent of me divorcing her and still expecting her to still do my laundry and clean the house (she doesn't anyway just an example)

Sorry for the rant I am just bitter as you can probably tell
When you say that there is no state formula, do you mean that there is no formula for alimony, or do you mean that there is no formula for both child support and alimony?
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post #13 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 11:15 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Expenses Sheet for mediation?

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Originally Posted by FeministInPink View Post
I know you guys are doing mediation, but I really think you should consult a separate lawyer on this. If she has her own career and has an income where she can support herself, I don't think you should have to play alimony. especially since you are giving her the divorce that she wants and you don't. And if your incomes are relatively similar and you have 50/50 custody, I'm not sure that you should be paying a huge chunk in child support, since you will already be paying to support them for the 50% of the time they are with you. And if the kids are staying on your health insurance, that should count for something (check to see what the cost difference is in your premiums for a single person vs. your current family policy).

These are my personal feelings. I'm not a lawyer and have no kids, so not sure how all this stuff works.
Hi FIP, Incomes not similar I make significantly more, the CS payment is a calculator which takes into account medical and all the other expenses so the CS payment is what it is and I am fine with it.

I worked out she can afford to buy a house in same area, pay all her bills, keep her car and healthcare is the only unknown at this point but I would even be fine with COBRA payment but anything above that I currently cannot accept.

My fear about consulting a lawyer is we have to do a financial disclosure in Mediation so any payment to a Lawyer would be seen and I would imagine at that point she will get her own Lawyer and things could go down hill rapidly from that point, mediation fall apart, Litigation start and i could be liable for all legal fee's since it is at a judges discretion and I am the higher earner.

Not sure if I am using this thread to ask for advice anymore or just vent frustrations

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post #14 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 11:17 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Expenses Sheet for mediation?

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When you say that there is no state formula, do you mean that there is no formula for alimony, or do you mean that there is no formula for both child support and alimony?
There is one for CS which we have used, just no state formula for Alimony they use a few guidelines and then establish if there is a Need so each judge could see a different need and choose a different amount or time frame.

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post #15 of 41 (permalink) Old 04-20-2017, 11:18 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Expenses Sheet for mediation?

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Have you spoken to a lawyer about what kind of alimony a judge would likely order?
No I am too worried about that opening up a can of worms and making things worse.

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