Many people who are ordered to pay alimony after a divorce are not happy about it. It certainly doesn’t help alimony is often paid monthly, forcing the payor to write a check to his or her ex on a monthly basis. The sting of writing the check is a constant reminder of the divorce. Nonetheless, to avoid contempt, these checks must be written religiously.
A New Jersey woman found a way to make herself feel a little between when writing alimony checks, but her ex-husband didn’t agree. Woman is sued for writing ‘bum’ and ‘loser’ on memo line of alimony checks to her ex-husband, by Debra Cassens Weiss, abajournal.com, December 22, 2015. In that case, an ex-husband sued his ex-wife for emotional distress after she wrote “bum” and “loser” on the memo line of her alimony checks. He claims that her actions worsened his health conditions and caused multiple heart attacks. After the ex-husband’s attorney wrote her a letter asking her to stop adding comments in the memo line, the ex-wife switched to filling the memo line with a crude acronym. At that point, the ex-husband filed the lawsuit.
While this case is certainly humorous (and may or may not be a successful emotional distress claim), the ex-wife’s actions are not recommended as they will do nothing but incite further animosity between the parties. Truthfully, this is probably what the ex-wife wanted and expected when she added comments to the alimony check memo line. However, no good can come from her action. If you have been ordered to pay alimony and get angry every time you have to write a check, consider doing a direct deposit instead. While you will still see the money leaving your account each month (there is no way to avoid that), at least it will be automatic and you won’t have to physically write and mail a check. This could help you control your irritation caused by paying each month and may actually better help you move on from the divorce.