What Factors Affect Alimony?
- Posted on: Jun 24 2021
If you are in the process of a divorce, alimony may be something that you have to deal with. Alimony, often called spousal support, is usually ordered by the court when one spouse makes a significant amount of money more than the other spouse. This payment helps equalize the overall financial status of each person. This may make it possible for one person to continue living in the same neighborhood or continue to afford their vehicle. Alimony isn’t ordered in every divorce, and there are a number of factors that can determine how much money is awarded and for how long.
The Length of the Marriage
The first factor that determines if alimony is awarded at all is the length of the marriage. Some states do not award alimony if the marriage was less than a year old. Even if you have been married for three or four years, the court may consider that too short a time. It depends on a number of other factors.
Financial Resources and Potential
Two of those factors are the financial resources you both have on hand and the potential you each have of earning money. If you both work and have similar jobs, there may be no need for alimony. Pre-marital assets may play a role in this, as will resources such as trust funds that may pay out regularly.
Then there’s your earning potential. If you aren’t currently working but have the potential to work, that can count against you being awarded alimony. For example, if you have a degree in an in-demand field, the judge may determine that you can get a job fairly easily. Your work experience, education, and the industry you’ve worked in will all be evaluated. If you did not finish your degree, the court could order rehabilitative alimony, a special type of alimony that has to be used to finish your education so you can more easily find work.
What You Contributed to the Marriage
What did you contribute to the marriage? The court will look at more than just your financial contributions when determining this. For example, if you quit your job to raise your children, helped your spouse establish their own business, or took care of an elderly relative, those count as contributions. The court could order alimony as a form of repaying you for these contributions.
Are you preparing for a divorce? If so, you need a great legal team on your side. Contact the FK Law Group today to discuss your case.