Alimony or spousal support is based upon need and ability to pay. That is, the need of the spouse requesting alimony and the ability to pay of the spouse from whom alimony is sought. Need is determined by taking the net income the requesting spouse earns (or the amount the Court determines that spouse should be earning), and subtracting from that net income the cost of paying for the reasonable and necessary living expenses in the lifestyle to which the parties have become accustomed during the marriage. If the result is a negative number, that is the requesting spouses need. The ability to pay of the spouse from whom alimony is sought is similarly determined by taking the net income that spouse earns (or the amount the Court determines that spouse should be earning), and subtracting from that net income the cost of that spouses reasonable and necessary living expenses in the lifestyle to which the parties have become accustomed during the marriage. If the result is a positive number the court may determine there is the ability to pay.

Alimony may also be awarded on a temporary basis along with temporary child support, time-sharing, exclusive use and possession of the marital home, and attorney’s fees.

Posted in: Family Law