Despite arguments about how hard or easy housework maybe, some people make their career out of it. Examples include housekeeping, nannying, landscaping, personal assistant, and so on. Furthermore, being a stay-at-home mom includes all those tasks, without the paycheck. However, a judge from Spain recently sided in favor of a divorcee after 25 years of caretaking for her family.
Choosing a Life of Housework
Ivana Moral divorced her husband of 25 years, in 2020. The pair had married in 1995 and have had 2 daughters together. Ivana stayed home to raise the kids and tend to the housework. Meanwhile, her husband was a businessman. Judge Laura Ruiz Alaminos factored in minimum wage and the housework Ivana had done throughout the pair’s marriage. Judge Laura broke what would have been each year’s income for Ivana. Settling on 180,000 Euros, which translates to a total of $217,000 USD for Ivana’s contributions to her family. The settlement decision broke records in Velez-Malaga, southern Spain, and went public, proving that even a job “as simple” as housework, is worthy of respect and compensation.
Compensation for Daughters Too
The ruling stated that Ivana had spent the majority of her time looking after their two daughters and maintaining housework. Therefore, she would be awarded the backpay that she’d “earned” during their lives together. Ivana’s, now, ex-husband has been ordered to pay her nearly $500 USD a month and nearly $1000 a month divided between their two daughters, now ages 14 and 20.
Devotion to Housework is Rewarded
“Clearly this was a case of abuse to be completely excluded financially. With nothing left after my marriage ended, so me and my daughters were left with nothing after all these years of putting all my time, energy and love in the family,” Ivana said. “I was supporting my husband in his work and in the family as a mother and a father. I was never allowed access to his financial affairs; everything was in his name.”
The ruling also said that since getting married, Ivana a dedicated herself, “to essentially working in the home, which meant looking after the home and the family and all that involves.”
At the start of their marriage, Ivana signed, per her partner’s request, an agreement stating a separation of property. Essentially, she agreed that she wouldn’t have any claim to the wealth he’d come in with, or in this case leave with. Although they did agree to split tangible possessions, this left Ivana in a position without any savings or financial security.
Sharing to Help Others
Ivana said that her husband didn’t want her to work outside of their home. She explained, “I have dedicated myself exclusively to housework, looking after my husband and the house,” Further sharing, “He made me take on the specific role’ of doing domestic chores, to the extent that ‘I was in a place where I couldn’t really do much else.” Other than housework, he would only permit her to handle public relations for the gyms he owned.
The job of stay-at-home mom takes years of love, patience, and housework. The job leaves little room for earning some type of income outside the home. Therefore, Ivana’s situation is one to shed light on the importance of valuing, appreciating, and compensating women for their contributions. Ivana disclosed her reason for sharing her story is so that other women in the world may know what they’re entitled to.
It is expected that her ex-husband will apply to appeal the settlement. Nonetheless, Ivana is happy with how things turned out and said it’s “very well deserved.”
Divorce is incredibly common with expert estimates of more than 40%. In many of these cases, women stay at home to do housework, care for the kids, and maintain family schedules and meals. As a result, many don’t have any income or a safety net in case their marriages fall through. Trusting your partner and their intentions is of the utmost importance. However, women should also be looking out for themselves. Furthermore, ensuring they can meet their own needs if things fall apart.
- “Spanish husband is ordered to pay his ex-wife £180,000 for 25 years of unpaid housework.” Daily Mail Elena Salvoni. March 7, 2023.
- “Woman awarded £180,000 from her ex in back payment for 25 Years of housework.” Wales Online. Neil Shaw. March 8, 2023.