All About Alimony
Alimony is financial support provided by one spouse to the other as legal obligation during the process of divorce or for a certain period of time following a final divorce. Courts in general require the spouse who earns more to help support the spouse who earns minimally. There are different types of alimony and each serves a distinct purpose and has different requirements.
Permanent alimony is to help a spouse with low income or with no income at all. This type of alimony is likely to be granted following a long-term marriage, typically a marriage spanning more than 17 years. Its purpose is to help meet financial needs of the spouse who doesn’t have an income sufficiently adequate for self-sufficiency or the spouse lacks the capacity to become self-sufficient. Unless specifically ordered to the contrary, this type of alimony stops upon remarriage of the person receiving the alimony. As time goes on either party can return to court to attempt to have the amount of alimony raised or lowered.
Temporary alimony is the financial support awarded to a spouse during the process of divorce and ends once the court proceeding is deemed final.
This form of alimony is short-term in nature and starts after the divorce is final. It runs for a maximum of 2 years only. The purpose of bridge-the-gap alimony is to assist the affected spouse in easing the financial shift from a married lifestyle to a single standard of living and while seeking improved employment opportunities.
Rehabilitative alimony is usually awarded to short term and medium length marriages. Its purpose is to help a spouse in establishing his or her capability to be self-supporting through different mediums such as re-developing previous credentials, skills, or acquisition of training and education needed for employment. The spouse seeking this type of alimony has to show evidence of a definite plan or illustration of rehabilitation such as training certifications or college attendance. Generally, rehabilitative alimony is made by the spouse who has given up education and career to have children and currently needs financial support so that he or she can work again or finish education or training. Another consideration would be if a spouse sacrificed his or her education or training in order for the other spouse to complete their education, training, or business opportunity.
Another type of alimony, the durational alimony, can be awarded if permanent alimony is unsuitable. Its purpose is to provide a spouse with financial assistance equivalent to the number of years in a short term or moderate duration of marriage. So if you were married for the duration of 5 years, you would receive durational alimony in that span of time only.
Lump Sum Alimony
Lump sum alimony can be awarded if recurring payments on a monthly basis would become impractical. And on a fair level, one party can be awarded the marital business whereas the other party can be awarded a lump-sum alimony payment.
A knowledgeable attorney will consider the needs of their client, the best type of alimony to meet those needs, and the ability of the opposing spouse to pay the requested amount. Whether the final decision is made in mediation or the court room, having all the facts with sufficient proof will make the awarding of alimony much more likely.