The conversation of strategic divorces originated with the already fierce presidential race for the 2020 election. Senator Elizabeth Warren and Senator Bernie Sanders both set forward wealth taxes on certain amounts of money. Leading some extremely rich people to consider a strategic divorce in order to avoid paying taxes on their hundred of millions of dollars.
The debate on whether or not to get a divorce to save some money screams first world, first class problem. However, a strategic divorce has the ability to help families other than the mega-rich. Read on to learn all about strategic divorce and the conversation surrounding this questionable move.
What Is A Strategic Divorce?
A strategic divorce, at its root, is a money saving tactic. While some people may see other benefits, it usually boils down to money. A strategic divorce is kind of the opposite of an emotional divorce. A couple separates legally, but that is it. They still live together, enjoy one another’s company, and share resources. The discussion of this kind of divorce has many people questioning though – is it worth it?
Reasons For A Strategic Divorce
While the discussion originated with the ultra-wealthy, upper middle-class couples also benefit from a strategic divorce. Around the 600,000-dollar mark, couples experience higher taxes by staying married than they would individually.
However, people at that income would not save that much money. It isn’t until a couple’s combined income hits the area of 100 million that a strategic divorce truly saves them money. Even then, they are only saving about one percent of their income.
In a country where health care for all is heavily debated, it is not unheard of that somebody marries another person to access health insurance or health care. This is an especially common phenomena with America’s military personnel and other federal or state government jobs.
However, a divorce enabling health insurance is a new phenomenon. Programs such as Medicare, Medicaid, and the Affordable Health Care Act all provide coverage to those who would not be able to have it otherwise. Due to very strict parameters, lower middle class and middle-class couples may find themselves just outside of coverage. For those people, a divorce possibly shifts them back into a lower income bracket that allows them coverage via those programs.
College Tuition & Financial Aid
Attending a University in the United States is quite literally prohibitively expensive for many people. A strategic divorce solves the issue of affordability for some families. If a couple gets a legal divorce, one spouse typically has a lower income than the other. The couple agrees that the lower income spouse gets custody of the child, and they set a low amount of child support. Legally, that child is entitled to much more financial aid than if their parents stay married. Meanwhile, nothing at home has to change. Magically, college becomes much more affordable!