Washington spousal maintenance generally ends if the spouse receiving then maintenance remarries. In some cases, however, the parties may agree or the divorce decree may provide that maintenance continue beyond remarriage. In a recent unpublished case, a former husband challenged a court order that maintenance continue even after his wife’s remarriage.
The parties’ divorce was finalized in 2018. The decree provided that the husband would pay the wife spousal maintenance for 10 years. The maintenance provision was on a mandatory pattern form used between 2016 and 2019. Under the termination section, it stated that maintenance would end on the death of either spouse or the remarriage or registration of a new domestic partnership of the spouse receiving maintenance unless a different date or event was stated below. Directly below, it stated, “The husband shall pay maintenance for 10 years.”
The wife had been a stay-at-home mother during her marriage to the husband and was not currently employed. The husband earned about $140,000. The wife married someone earning approximately $215,000 per year in 2019.