What You Need To Know About Alimony

If you are contemplating divorce you might be wondering about alimony. Alimony is a big concern for many people. For instance, one spouse may be worried about divorce because they do not make enough money to support themselves, so in divorcing their spouse, they would become impoverished. On the other hand, the spouse who makes a significant income might be worried about divorce because they would lose a good deal of money in alimony payments. Here is what you need to know about alimony and if it will apply to you.

Does Every Divorced Couple Have To Pay Alimony?

Not all divorced couples will have to pay alimony. There are some situations where the couple will be able to go their separate ways without continuing to make payments to each other. For instance, if the couple was only married for a short amount of time, they might be able to make a clean break and simply divide the assets without making payments to each other.

Another instance where you wouldn't have to pay alimony is if both spouses are employed and each spouse makes a relatively good income. In this case, you could each just keep your own money and live off what you make.

The situations where you would definitely have to pay alimony is if you have been married for a long time, and/or if one spouse makes significantly less than the other. So for example, if one spouse has been a stay at home parent for the majority of their marriage and would have a hard time entering the work force immediately, they would be entitled to alimony.

How Long Does Alimony Last?

The good news is that alimony won't last forever, and there are usually contingencies placed on it, so that at some point the couple can stop making payments to each other. Here are some of the reasons alimony could end.

If the impoverished spouse remarries they would not need financial assistance anymore. Another situation is when the children leave the home. The stay-at-home spouse no longer needs to be at home and can enter the workforce to support themselves. If the spouse who is receiving alimony has not made a significant effort to get a job, even though they are able, then the judge may order the alimony to stop. And lastly, if the spouse who is paying alimony retires, they might be able to quit paying alimony.

By understanding alimony you can know what to expect in your divorce. If you have further questions, contact an attorney from a firm like Tracy McMurtrie Luck & Associates.