Alimony is a form of spousal support that’s given from one spouse to the other after a divorce. The purpose of alimony is so that a spouse can continue living a lifestyle they’re accustomed to living until they can become self-supporting. Typically, alimony is given to a spouse who makes a lower income or no income at all.
How alimony is granted often depends on the length of a marriage, reasonable needs and each spouse’s income. Many people who have been in marriages for ten or more years are awarded alimony. Alimony can last until death, remarriage or a court-ordered date.
There are many different kinds of alimony and recent laws may change how alimony works in the future. Here’s what you should know:
There are a lot of financial decisions during and after a divorce. An ex-spouse may receive financial support to help them temporarily. Bridge-the-gap alimony payments may last for a maximum of two years and not exceed the awarded amount. During these two years, ex-spouses can use their alimony to finish financial matters, such as selling a house.
Many people are stay-at-home spouses and parents. Spouses in these roles may struggle to find employment after a divorce. Rehabilitative alimony can help an ex-spouse acquire employment education and training. This way the ex-spouse can adjust to an independent lifestyle and seek their own means of financial stability.
A spouse can seek durational alimony that lasts for a specified amount of time for short or moderate marriages. Or, marriages that have lasted a long time, but the spouse does not need permanent spousal support can seek alimony.
Alimony can be granted for life if a marriage lasted for a long time. Permanent alimony could also be granted in short or moderate marriages in unique cases. A recent bill was passed that was set to eliminate permanent alimony, however, and this continues to be a hard-fought issue.
Alimony laws can be difficult to understand and new laws may only further confuse people who wish to seek alimony. People creating prenups or postnups or going through a divorce may need to reach out for legal help.