One of the most crucial decisions during a divorce is splitting up the assets and paying support for the spouse. While assets separation is rather easier, what’s not is deciding the alimony or the spousal support. After all, deciding the cost of sustaining a healthy life and regular alimony payments is not an easy task.
In this article, we shall be discussing all that goes into alimony during a divorce, from the factors that affect the value of alimony to how long shall it be paid.
What Is Alimony?
During a divorce one of the spouses usually, the earning member has to pay for the maintenance and support of the other spouse. This is to ensure that the other spouse, who is usually dependant on the earning partner is not devoid of life-sustaining financial support.
However, alimony is not simply allowed to everyone. There are certain rules and regulations that govern who shall pay the alimony and child support and until what time and how much should be paid.
Typically, the court takes into consideration some easy to determine factors for the duration of the alimony. The experts from Ephraimlaw.com explain some of the factors that may help decide the matter:
- The judge will either determine a future date usually, several years ahead in the future.
- If the other spouse remarries, he/she shall be ineligible for receiving alimony.
- If the children no longer require full-time parental support at home, the terms of alimony may be revised.
- If the judge decides that the other spouse has been ineffective in making sufficient efforts for becoming self-supported.
- Other events such as retirement, or loss of job occur, the court may reevaluate the alimony amount or may excuse the support.
- If one of the spouses passes away.
Although the court has a say in deciding the alimony and its relevant terms, spouses can mutually agree to a settlement agreement out of the court as well. It would altogether avoid any court interventions in the matter.
Do All Marriages Fit Into The Criteria For Alimony?
As ambiguous as it may sound, not all married couples applying for a divorce are liable/entitled to pay/receive alimony, respectively. For example, a marriage that has lasted less than two years does not even make it to eligibility criteria. Similarly, if both the former spouses have well to do employment and can support themselves, the court may decide not to include any alimony in the case. However, the assets may still be divided between both parties.
What Are The Repercussions Of Not Complying With The Alimony Decision?
If one of the parties refuses to pay alimony, the other party may file a lawsuit against the at-fault party. The court may then decide either to transfer a portion of the net worth of the spouse to the recipient or may even cease a part of their assets. On the other hand, if a spouse refuses to accept the alimony, the court may intervene and require to know the reason. Depending upon the case, the court may either forfeit the alimony or renegotiate the case altogether.
Notably, alimony is not an easy subject. It requires a lot of expertise and knowledge of the reforms in the laws around it. Therefore, it is always best to consult with an experienced divorce attorney to better determine if you’re eligible for receiving or paying alimony to your former partner.