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What you need to know about alimony

| Sep 1, 2020 | Family Law |

If you and your spouse are getting a divorce, there are a lot of things to consider. In addition to dividing up your property and coming up with a child custody and visitation agreement, you may also have to consider the topic of alimony or spousal support.

What is alimony?

In many marriages, one spouse will work outside the home while the other stays home to take care of the kids or only works part-time. In other cases, both spouses work full-time, but one spouse earns significantly more money than the other. When couples in these situations get divorced, the spouse who earn less money may struggle financially when they no longer can depend on their spouse’s income. That’s where alimony comes in.

Alimony typically refers to a payments made by the higher-earning spouse to the lesser-earning spouse to support the lesser-earning spouse after the divorce. The purpose of alimony is to make the financial transition from married life to single life a little easier for the lesser-earning spouse.

Types of alimony

Alimony can be awarded on a temporary or, in rare cases, permanent basis. Alimony can be awarded in lump-sum, but many people will receive periodic alimony, a regular monthly payment made to the lesser-earning spouse to help them maintain the lifestyle they had during the marriage. In some cases, the court may award rehabilitative alimony, where one spouse will pay alimony until the other spouse completes their education or job training.

Factors to consider for alimony

Courts can consider many factors while determining how much alimony to award including length of the marriage; earning ability of both parties; contributions of each spouse during the marriage; and marital assets.

Alimony is a part of many Alabama divorces and can be difficult to figure out. A family law attorney in your area can review your case and determine if you qualify for alimony.