All About Alimony

Most of us know that most marriages nowadays end in divorce, but very few of us understand the concept of alimony. I myself was only recently introduced to the term while a friend of mine was going through a divorce herself. After watching her experience, I researched for myself and found out the following about alimony.

What is Alimony?

First, the big question. What exactly is alimony? Alimony is the court-ordered amount someone must pay the spouse they’re separating from during a divorce proceeding. In the United States, alimony is sometimes referred to as spousal support. Spousal support is designed to best help the receiving spouse to best transition the different financial circumstances in marriage and singlehood.

Types of Alimony

Like most aspects of the legal field, alimony is complicated. There are three main types of alimony, described below:

Permanent Alimony

Permanent alimony is just how it sounds. With permanent alimony, the spouse ordered to provide spousal support must do so until they pass away or their spouse does or remarries. As of recently, many courts are moving away from permanent alimony.

Temporary Alimony

Again, just like it sounds. The spouse ordered to pay the other is only required to do so during the divorce procedure. This is so that the spouse receiving the financial reward, usually, the one who makes considerably less money, has enough support to look for a new occupation to provide for themselves.

Modifying Alimony

Modifying alimony has the ability to be changed during the divorce or after. These modifications are due to changes in the financial situations of either the paying spouse or the receiving spouse.

Factors Influencing Alimony

Many factors go into a judge’s decision as to what type of alimony to go with and for how much. Most of these factors are dependent on what state you are filing for divorce in, so make sure to research the exact regulations in your area. The typical factors affecting alimony are the length of the marriage, age of both spouses, the health of the spouses involved, and more.

What You Should Do

If you’re going through a divorce, you may be entitled to alimony. If you’re looking into receiving alimony as a part of your divorce proceedings, your first step should be to contact an attorney.

There are many attorneys that specialize in alimony negotiations. An alimony attorney like those working at the Law Office of Andrew A. Bestafka, Esq. is experienced in how to best argue for you to receive the financial compensation you deserve and best guide you on what type of alimony you should be asking for.

Likewise, if you are going through a divorce and believe you could potentially be ordered to pay alimony, speak to an attorney. Attorneys can negotiate so that the alimony you are ordered to pay is reasonable and doesn’t hurt you financially.

No matter which of the above examples best describes your situation, it is imperative that you reach out to an attorney. Don’t attempt to represent yourself — attorneys are well-versed in all the tips and tricks needed for your specific circumstances.