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I had a question for those physicians/residents who are married or planning to marry someone who is not a physician.

I read that in this situation, if there is a divorce, then the physician will likely be paying the following to his/her ex: (1) half of savings/assets, (2) alimony, which could be $2000-3000 per month for as long as the marriage lasted, or in some cases FOR LIFE, and (3) half the value of the medical license (which could be worth $500K-1M).

Now, I am 100% believer in happily ever after and don't intend on my (potential) future marriage (which I'm not thinking about tbh) to fail. But, it sounds like not only is marriage a HUGE one-sided risk, but it also gives the non-physician spouse complete power over the physician spouse. Basically, the physician spouse is agreeing to a lifetime of being a hostage. I know some of you will say "you should 100% trust the person you're marrying or else just dont marry them", but people fight and argue all the time, even in healthy relationships. Sometimes, people say things they don't mean. One of those things could be "do as I say or I'll divorce you and make you bankrupt"...and there's nothing the other person can do.

Has anyone thought of this? or do people just not care? LOL I was just curious.

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35 minutes ago, ohmyohmy said:

I had a question for those physicians/residents who are married or planning to marry someone who is not a physician.

As the above poster said this can all be pre-negotiated with a pre-nup.

But the reality is that divorces are highly specific to each situation. The scenario you're describing is fairly archaic (and, although you were careful to be gender neutral, misogynistic).

When a marriage dissolves, each partner is entitled to half of the family wealth generated during the marriage, as well as an appropriate maintenance of their lifestyle, and relative contributions to the marriage. Generally, pre-marriage wealth/debt is not divided. The scenario you describe is the "traditional" situation where the father works and the mother is a stay at home mother who has given up her career trajectory. In that picture, the income is considered to be generated by the marriage unit, as the father could not work and generate an income as much if he had to also do childcare and homemaking duties.

In the scenario of a marriage where both partners both worked and there were no unequal duties and there wasn't a drastic difference in lifestyle after separation then there would just be a simple division of assets.

Spousal support is to compensate for one partner's aborted work trajectory. Say one parent went to college and was starting off in their industry but became the stay at home parent while the other furthered their education/career, then upon separation, one is at a huge advantage because the stay at home parent was supporting the working parent the whole time. So spousal support is to compensate the parent who hadn't been working and who was not able to advance their education/career to make up for this, relative to what their profession was (ie. someone who had been a lawyer/doctor may get a higher spousal support than a teacher, for instance). It's only meant to make up the difference and is not permanent, the previously stay at home parent is expected to return to work and advance their career and not just live off spousal support.

Child support is obviously relative to where the children live. There might not be much if custody is equal.

Assets and debts accrued during the marriage are divided equally. Assets or debts that one partner had prior to the marriage are not divided. For instance if the physician partner entered the marriage heavily in debt, and the other partner had significant wealth prior to marriage, both would be accounted for prior to division of assets. All assets accrued during marriage are split equally, because, again, even through their may be one "breadwinner" they are able to do so because of homemaking/childcare/mental/personal support of their spouse, and assets are accrued as a team.

A "medical licence" does not hold any value, but the physician's "practice" has a value just like any other assets. (https://elawtalk.com/dividing-a-business-when-going-through-divorce-in-bc/) So if you just work for a hospital or health authority and get a salary, then there is nothing to divide. If you are in private practice and have a corporation which rents a building, pays administrative staff, owns assets like exam tables, etc. That corporation is an asset which is also divided, just as if instead you had been taking all billings into savings and paying rent and and staff out of pocket, those savings are also divisible. The possibility that the corporation is worth 0.5-1 mil is realistic, but after a multi year marriage to a staff physician the house and bank assets are likely to be worth much more than that.

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4 hours ago, ohmyohmy said:

I had a question for those physicians/residents who are married or planning to marry someone who is not a physician.

I read that in this situation, if there is a divorce, then the physician will likely be paying the following to his/her ex: (1) half of savings/assets, (2) alimony, which could be $2000-3000 per month for as long as the marriage lasted, or in some cases FOR LIFE, and (3) half the value of the medical license (which could be worth $500K-1M).

Now, I am 100% believer in happily ever after and don't intend on my (potential) future marriage (which I'm not thinking about tbh) to fail. But, it sounds like not only is marriage a HUGE one-sided risk, but it also gives the non-physician spouse complete power over the physician spouse. Basically, the physician spouse is agreeing to a lifetime of being a hostage. I know some of you will say "you should 100% trust the person you're marrying or else just dont marry them", but people fight and argue all the time, even in healthy relationships. Sometimes, people say things they don't mean. One of those things could be "do as I say or I'll divorce you and make you bankrupt"...and there's nothing the other person can do.

Has anyone thought of this? or do people just not care? LOL I was just curious.

A lot of overtones of misunderstanding in this post, in general life isn't "fair" but spends some time looking more into it to truly understand what dynamics are at play.

Yes, often on dissolvement there will be payments etc that can last some time, but it is very much unique and on a case-by-case basis. 

"Half the value of the medical license"  - this is a new one though, never heard of this and sounds pretty preposterous .

On the topic of pre-nups, they often aren't worth their weight in paper. As lawyers have shown time and time again, signing something on a piece of paper when times were good, is not iron clad...nor do they serve the purpose people commonly think they do. Jurisdiction variations based on different levels/classes of law of course apply.

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1 hour ago, JohnGrisham said:

A lot of overtones of misunderstanding in this post, in general life isn't "fair" but spends some time looking more into it to truly understand what dynamics are at play.

Yes, often on dissolvement there will be payments etc that can last some time, but it is very much unique and on a case-by-case basis. 

"Half the value of the medical license"  - this is a new one though, never heard of this and sounds pretty preposterous .

On the topic of pre-nups, they often aren't worth their weight in paper. As lawyers have shown time and time again, signing something on a piece of paper when times were good, is not iron clad...nor do they serve the purpose people commonly think they do. Jurisdiction variations based on different levels/classes of law of course apply.

I would also like to emphasize that you should not bank on a pre-nup. It is not as strong a defense as people think.

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