What are the Important Factors Considered for Determining Alimony?
If you have recently been through an upheaval in your life, chances are you have given more than a moment’s thought to alimony. Alimony, known as “spousal maintenance,” is a way to ensure income stability for the spouse that is less well-off financially after a divorce. It may seem equitable, but it can be difficult to determine exactly how much alimony should be awarded if divorced spouses cannot agree on their own.
A divorce attorney in Boston, MA, can help you determine what payments you are entitled to. Alimony usually takes the form of a periodic sum of money paid to the spouse by the other. These payments are designed to assist with basic needs like food, shelter, clothing, and medical expenses.
Let us now see into some of the important factors that are considered for determining alimony.
- The length of the marriage
This is perhaps the most influential factor your lawyer will consider in determining alimony. If your marriage is of short duration, you will likely not be eligible for spousal maintenance. How long you were married can have an impact on the alimony amount, as well. If you were married for only a few years and want to retain some degree of financial stability, you should probably be prepared to request a substantial amount of support.
- The conduct of the parties during the marriage
The court will consider the conduct of the parties in determining how much alimony they are eligible for. If you were abusive toward your spouse or if your spouse was unfaithful, this can influence the court’s decision on spousal maintenance.
- The age and health of the parties
In most cases, a younger spouse will be given less alimony than an older one, as the younger party is assumed to have more financial earning capacity. The amount of alimony award can also be influenced by health issues. If either party suffers from a serious illness that prevents them from earning a living, they may be awarded a more substantial amount of maintenance than they would otherwise.
- The jobs of the parties and the amount and sources of income
Your spousal support award can be influenced to a certain extent by your income. Judges will pay close attention to how much you earn and what are the sources of your income. If you are a highly successful professional and make big bucks, that may prevent you from receiving spousal maintenance, as it is assumed that you should be able to support yourself on your own.