Garner & Garner, P.A. Articles Expect the Unexpected when it comes to Alimony or Spousal Support

Expect the Unexpected when it comes to Alimony or Spousal Support

By Garner & Garner, P.A.  Nov. 4, 2013 2:56p

While child support payments and property division can be predicted in a divorce, spousal support is highly variable. There are no hard and fast rules that the courts use determine what amount will be paid out to a former spouse and how long those payments may be made. The main reason for this is the fact that every couple's financial situation is different which means that the area of alimony in family law must be flexible. It begins, however, with determining how much each spouse earns currently. In circumstances where it is obvious which spouse is "economically superior" then it is most likely that that spouse will be the one either paying child support (or may be granted primary custody) and alimony or just alimony if there are no children from the marriage. Even when the economics are clear though, spousal support payments may not be a sure thing. Other factors that courts take into consideration are the earning capabilities of the spouse that makes less. This is determined based on that individual's education, health, the current job market and other factors. A judge may decide that a spouse with a college education and good health could be capable of increasing his or her earning capacity after a divorce. In such circumstances the judge may grant temporary spousal support while that individual regains viable economic stability or gets well in the case of poor health. If you have questions concerning alimony then speak with a knowledgeable divorce lawyer today.

Spousal Support Modifications

It is important to know that even if the judge grants "permanent" spousal support that does not mean that the matter is closed to modifications in the future. Circumstances of either former spouse could be valid grounds for a modification of existing divorce agreements. If the individual receiving support remarries, comes into a substantial inheritance or has other positive changes in their economic situation then the supporting spouse could petition for a modification. Likewise, the individual paying support could seek a modification if his or her earnings have decreased, if there was a job loss or health issue.

A Columbia Divorce Attorney may be able to Help

No matter how complicated your case may be, an attorney at Garner & Garner, P.A. may be able to help resolve your divorce concerns. Contact our firm today to schedule a free consultation and find out more about your legal options.

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