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Who pays the expenses during a divorce?

It depends. Everyone is different.

There isn’t a hard and fast rule for the expenses you incur during the “not quite married, not quite divorced” time-period. Super helpful, right? 

At Mediation Northwest, we work with soon-to-be-divorced couples to help them limit the stress (and costs) of divorce in Oregon. Here’s how to look at these divorce expenses, based on our 20+ years of experience as a boutique divorce mediation firm.

Who pays for a divorce in Oregon?

The simplest answer is: You talk about it. 

You look at your expenses and your incomes and you make a temporary agreement. Everyone is different. There is no right or wrong way.

  • For the spouse who asked for the divorce: You likely had a lot of time to emotionally process your decision to divorce before telling your spouse. Your spouse needs time to emotionally process the divorce. They are likely not in an emotional position to talk about the finances for a month… or several months. If this is you, be patient and continue to share expenses as you did before the divorce. Your patience will be rewarded.
  • For the spouse who doesn’t earn an income to support themself: You need to begin a conversation with your spouse about their expectations and how you each will pay for expenses during this interim time.
  • For the spouse who earns more money or entirely supports the family: Have realistic expectations that you will continue to be the “breadwinner” for the family until the divorce is final.

Figure out what works best for your specific divorce situation

The majority of my divorce mediation couples continue to share expenses until the divorce is finalized.

However, if one party makes all the money and refuses to share the expenses during the temporary period of “not quite married, not quite divorced,” then you may need to go to court and request the court to order temporary support from your spouse to pay the expenses. The court will review the expenses and the incomes and make a temporary order of who pays what. If this is you, you should not be in mediation.

Here is what I typically tell my divorce mediation clients: Continue to share expenses and also make an agreement that neither party can spend X amount of dollars without mutual agreement

This way, you have time to figure-out your new paths and you avoid going to court — which can end up being another costly factor.

Get in touch with Mediation Northwest today

Divorce can be one of the most painful experiences you will endure in your life, but I am here to walk with you through the fiery pits of divorce hell. I will guide you and tell you the traps to avoid. We will get through this together until we get to the other side.

If you still have questions and want to schedule a consultation, please click here to schedule a 30-minute consultation. If you want to read more about divorce mediation in Oregon, you can download my book Divorce Without Drama for free.


Disclaimer: All information contained within this post is limited to Oregon. Always consult an attorney about your specific situation.

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