Divorce is difficult no matter at what stage you decide to part ways. It is not easy to lose someone you have loved and had a good time together. You’ve had some good times and embraced each other during adverse times. Divorce is a long road from emotional and financial aspects.

What is Alimony?

Alimony means payment and maintenance of a spouse, either by lump sum or ongoing basis in a divorce or legal separation. The idea is to provide alimony, support your spouse with lower income, and provide them with similar living standards enjoyed during their marriage. It is difficult for couples to come to terms emotionally during separation but gets even tougher with what follows. There are several questions about alimony and how it works. It can be either a court’s order or even a mutual agreement to support after the divorce. Remember, states use a different terms for alimony, such as spousal support or maintenance, but they all mean the same thing. State laws on alimony determine how it works, how judges decide when to award spousal support, and how much.

Who Gets Alimony?

Remember, it is not always about husbands must pay the alimony to support their wives. It can be done either way, for example, if the wife earns well and the husband needs support. It all depends on the spouse, and if they have a lower income and need financial help, they can ask for alimony. Meanwhile, alimony does not mean equalizing a divorced couple’s financial situation. It simply means to make sure that both spouses meet their financial needs.

Who Decides Alimony?

A judge weighs in many factors before deciding on alimony. They look at the earnings of both parties and if the party paying alimony can manage it. Also, whether the requesting party genuinely needs it or not. There are times people are ingenuine about their earnings to extract money. The party must request alimony rather than thinking they will get it by default. 

How Does Alimony Work?

If the court decides it, a date is fixed on which a specific amount is sent/received. Sometimes it is weekly or bi-weekly. The alimony payments will continue unless a life-changing event happens for the supported spouse, such as remarriage, cohabitating with another adult, a new-high paying job, retirement, or death.

Can You Avoid it?

Having a prenuptial agreement before or post-nuptial during the marriage can be helpful. The prenuptial or post-nuptial agreements include how much the alimony would be, how long you have to pay, and whether to write checks or use automatic payments. It is usually much easier to come to terms with agreements in a loving relationship than when going through a divorce. Shaffer Family Law can help you navigate through such difficult times. Our experienced legal attorneys can help you with legal advice in your best interests.

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