Alimony means the financial spousal support that the financially strong spouse pays to the other after the divorce.
Alimony law has been made because in the earlier times women did not earn and spent most of their time taking care of their home and family. During those days men were considered to be the main bread earners of the family and laws were made in the favor of women to provide a safety for them in the event of divorce.
In today’s world as times have changed and most women are now earning like men and now there are new laws that have imposed the obligation of alimony on the party to the divorce who is financially strong. Alimony is also considered to be the financial compensation which is provided by one spouse to another. The alimony is paid by the spouse who is more financially stable than the other. Many a times it happens that the parties that are seeking for divorce have fail to come to an agreement and this in turn makes the case more complicated and complex to solve.
Alimony is one of the most important topic in proceedings of the divorce. There are many alimony laws and they differ from one state to another. There are many factors that lead to the calculation of the alimony amount and once you are aware about these factors, you will be able to determine the level of spousal support that you are entitled to or may have to provide. When it comes to the estimation of alimony the judge requires taking into account certain factors before he/her can come to a fair and equitable decision.
There are many types of alimony laws that are applicable and they are determined by the individual state laws. The judge of the family court is the person that determines the payment of alimony and there are a number of factors that are generally taken into consideration when the judge needs to fix the amount that is to be paid to the party who claims for alimony.
The following factors are taken into consideration when it comes to the determination of the amount of alimony for the party to a divorce:
- The tenure and the duration of the marriage is taken into consideration
- The age of the parties to the divorce
- The medical condition of both the parties to the divorce
- The standard and the quality of life that the couple used to had before the divorce
- The financial condition of the parties to the divorce is also taken into consideration along with their ability to earn in the future
- The level of contribution and sacrifices that have been made by the spouses when they were married and the level of support that the spouse has extended to another when the latter had been pursuing either an educational degree or a career.
- The amount of alimony that is generally sanctioned depending on the child custody. The distribution of the rights relating to child custody and visitation also has a large influence on the ruling of the alimony that the judge determines in favor of the spouse who is asking for it in court.
- When the amount of alimony is determined the judge also takes into consideration the nature and the type of divorce that the couple has gone through. The judge needs to take into account whether the divorce has been a contested divorce or a no-fault divorce.
Out of 50 states among US 29 states render the acknowledgement of certain grounds for divorce when the amount of alimony is being determined. There may be a case that occurs when the recipient is facing the allegation of committing a crime or adultery that is a ground based for divorce. In such cases it is seen that the spouse is denied alimony. If you are a party to a divorce and you are no the verge of filing a suit for alimony there are certain things that you need to take into account.
The factors that you should look into are as follows:
- The Court is the sole discretion when it comes to awarding the alimony.
- If you have not been granted alimony by one state the other states will not entertain you with regard to its sanction. There may be a case where you have been granted a certain amount say $1 a year- in such a case you have the right to demand for more alimony before the competent court of law.
- When you are going in for an alimony claim and have been granted it, you must ensure that it is paid to you in the form of a check or money order. A point should be noted that alimony is taxable income for the spouse that receives it and this is the reason why it is recommended to go for a wise and prudent consultation services and certified financial adviser that will help you to calculate the amount of alimony that you should receive from your spouse.
As mentioned above the alimony laws are different in all the states of America and it is a hefty sum that is paid to one spouse by the other. The financial compensation is paid to the spouse that is financially not as good as the other.
There are various types of alimony that are paid and they have been discussed below:
- Alimony: This sum of money is paid until the death of the spouse receiving it. The payment of the alimony comes to an end if the spouse marries again. There are certain states that have seven provisions that are termed as “cohabitation” according to which if spouse is not married but is living with another partner, this does not permit the spouse to receive the amount of alimony.
- Lump Sum Alimony: This type of alimony is paid at a single point of time in the form of a lump sum and the amount is included to be taxable income.
- Temporary Alimony: This type of alimony is given to the spouse under special circumstances like for a couple of years and it does not continue. This alimony is generally paid when the parties to the divorce are more or less equal in terms of finance and one of them requires the amount to get a strong financial foothold or stand on his/her feet.
- Rehabilitative Alimony: This type of alimony is one that is given to the spouse who is very young in age. If the spouse is still studying and requires the money for getting self-support the rehabilitative alimony is paid. This amount of money is mainly paid in order to financially support the educational expenses of the spouse who is receiving the amount.
When the above types of alimony is taken into consideration the court or the judge requires to take into consideration the tenure of the martial bond that is a prime instrumental factor on whether or not the spouse should get alimony. When the couple has already spend a lot of time together and one of them have taken care of the children and the family for a very long period of time the amount of alimony that is paid is high.
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