Going through a divorce can be overwhelming, especially when you are not familiar with family law. Many people are particularly confused or misinformed regarding spousal maintenance payments after a divorce.
This makes it essential to work closely with a Dallas spousal support lawyer to navigate you through the divorce. Read on to learn what spousal support is and how a Dallas spousal support lawyer may help you in any scenario.
Dallas Spousal Support Lawyer
During the divorce proceedings, either party may ask the court to order the other to pay spousal support to them. This is a separate issue that is handled on a case-by-case basis from the division of marital property. However, it can be complicated to navigate on your own.
For example, the relationship between alimony and child support is a topic of much confusion. Child support payments must be used only for the benefit of the minor child while in the custodial parent's care, but alimony payments can be used for any purpose.
Below, we will discuss some factors regarding spousal support that you must understand to safeguard your rights and perform your duties during a divorce.
Keep in mind that while we will try to cover each topic in detail in this blog, discussing these issues with your Dallas spousal support lawyer is advisable to receive advice particular to your case. Your lawyer will provide you insights into the following topics of discussion.
What Is Spousal Support?
Spousal support entails providing a non-wage-earning or lower-wage-earning spouse with a steady income after a divorce. It's meant to mitigate the potentially devastating financial impact of a divorce.
For example, an ex-spouse who gave up working to provide for the family may require time to hone the skills necessary to find gainful employment after the divorce. Supporting a spouse to maintain the same lifestyle they had before the marriage is another reason for alimony, especially in families with a higher income.
It's possible to receive alimony in a set amount each month, or it could be paid out in a lump sum. When determining the type, amount, and duration of support awarded, the court will normally take into account the unique circumstances of both parties.
What Factors Go Into Determining the Amount of Alimony?
Courts have more leeway when deciding whether or not to award spousal support than they do regarding child support, which is mandated in most jurisdictions according to very strict monetary rules.
Numerous states' spousal support statutes are modeled after the Uniform Marriage and Divorce Act, which suggests judges take into account the following elements when determining alimony awards:
Factors such as the exes' ages, health, mental and financial stability are generally considered. The judges also consider the circumstances under which the couple divorced, how long it would take for the beneficiary to become economically independent through education or training, the level of comfort they enjoyed together as a married couple, and the duration of the marriage.
In addition, it is also evaluated how well the supporting spouse can provide for both themselves and the beneficiary. These are some factors that dictate the amount of spousal support payments.
What is the Duration of Spousal Support?
Divorce has become quite prevalent, which has had far-reaching effects on society. Today, there are just as many women as men enrolled in universities. Further, a sizable percentage of women, including moms, are now active participants in the labor field. But there is still a disparity in income between men and women.
Judges are increasingly mandating alimony for "rehabilitative" goals as a result of societal shifts that make such goals more important. That is, only for as long as the receiving spouse of either gender needs financial help to advance their education and eventually find gainful employment.
However, the court may mandate continued spousal support payments if one spouse is particularly vulnerable due to age, disability, or illness. Spousal support payments must continue until the court rules otherwise, even if the divorce judgment does not designate a timeframe for support to end.
However, once a receiving person remarries, they typically lose their award. Spousal support ends at the death of the payer, albeit this is not always the case. Suppose the court determines that the spouse receiving assistance is unable to work owing to age or illness. In that case, they may be entitled to financial support from the payer's estate or life insurance policy.
What You Need to Know about Spousal Support Payment Adjustments
With rare exceptions for cost-of-living adjustments, this amount generally remains the same from one year to the next, but child support payments often grow. Ex-spouses are not entitled to an increase in support just because their former partner's taxable income or job bonuses increase significantly.
On the contrary, if the supporting spouse's income suddenly drops so much that they can no longer afford alimony, the supporting spouse can ask the court to lower their alimony obligation. Alimony reductions based on tax returns may or may not be approved by the family court judge.
Get in Touch with a Dallas Spousal Support Lawyer
Alimony is a topic that frequently arises throughout divorce proceedings, whether they end in an amicable settlement or go to trial. If you need help with spousal support, you should consult a Dallas spousal support lawyer who specializes in family law.
Divorce can be taxing on a person's finances. Therefore, alimony can be helpful in making the transition back to single life. On the other hand, if you are the payer, you may need to safeguard yourself from paying unnecessary amounts in alimony.
Consult a spousal attorney at Houston Law today to learn more about your rights and obligations, including the possibility of alimony payments or receipts. We will work together to find a solution, analyzing every detail and evaluating your options in detail. From here, we develop a tailor-made plan to meet your needs.