Rockville, MD asked in Divorce and Child Support for Maryland

Q: Are gains through stocks considered income in calculation of alimony?

My ex has not been working for a year. He is currently on disability, even though he would be able to work. He receives a large disability insurance. He also made millions at the stock market. Now he claims that he can not work anymore and if ever, he would only work 50% of the time. He wants to reduce his alimony and child support payments.

I am sure he is not interested in working as he made so much money at the stock market. He did not sell his stocks yet though but will surely do so right after the trial.

Will his capital gains be calculated as income in regards to the child support and alimony?

Thank you in advance!

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1 Lawyer Answer
Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley
  • Rockville, MD
  • Licensed in Maryland

A: Possibly. Your question requires many more facts to be reviewed and considered, as it raises questions of voluntary impoverishment on the one hand, and availability of assets that might be converted into income-producing assets available to pay child support. In the case of Barton v. Hirshberg, 137 Md. App. 1 (2001), the appellate court describes circumstances under which a court may consider a party's assets when making an award of child support. If a parent's income is not not adequate to provide support to meet the standard of living enjoyed by the child during the marriage, and the parent has assets which could be converted into income-production, the court may look to these assets when determining support. This is a separate analysis from voluntary impoverishment. However, an overarching concept is that the obligor parent should not be able to sit on a mountain of untapped wealth while his minor child goes without and is reduced to live well below the income status both parents are financially able to provide (or which the child enjoyed when the two parents were together).

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