When the average person thinks about alimony, they are probably thinking of the rich and famous, or a divorce they saw on TV. It is true that alimony is not as common now as it once was, but if you are preparing for a divorce and are worried about maintaining your lifestyle or protecting your kids from a major change in lifestyle, it is definitely time to talk to an experienced and knowledgeable divorce lawyer about alimony.
Divorce is never a fun process, but a divorce lawyer can help you get what you need and help create the best possible outcome from an unfortunate situation. By understanding how most courts determine alimony payments, it may help you and your divorce lawyer determine an appropriate amount to request. Generally, the court will look at your income and your spouse’s income from the last few years. This will include pretty much all forms of income. Earned income is the most obvious, but if you have passive investment income, that will also be factored into the final decision. Asset division is also considered alongside income, because if you are getting more of the assets, you might not need as much ongoing monetary support. Be prepared to share tax returns and information about any other income you may have access to like bonuses or job perks. Even contributions to retirement accounts might be considered.
Alimony is generally rewarded for a specific amount of time. The goal is to give the spouse with a lower income time to readjust to new circumstances. The court can also readjust if someone gets remarried or it is decided that the children no longer need a full-time parent at home. Any time alimony is being considered or reevaluated, you should talk about your options with a qualified divorce lawyer.