During a divorce, a judge may require one spouse to support the other for a period of time to allow that individual the chance to get back on their feet and gain the skills needed to provide for themselves following the divorce. The court takes a wide range of factors into account when making this decision, and it has a great deal of leeway in determining how much spousal support will be awarded and how long those payments will be required.
The outcome of this decision-making process could come down to the abilities of the attorney representing you. It is important that you seek qualified legal representation if you are seeking spousal support or think that your spouse may request it.
Spousal Support Solutions Tailored To Your Circumstances
At Xuereb Law Group, our family law lawyers are skilled in handling spousal support proceedings and will effectively present your case to the judge, mindful of the factors that judges use to guide their decision.
For more information about spousal support and how our firm can help, please call our Canton, Michigan, law offices for a consultation.
Spousal support (or what used to be commonly referred to as alimony) is determined based on several factors. These include:
- Duration of the marriage
- Conduct of the spouses during the marriage and the divorce process
- Fault of a spouse in causing the divorce
- Age of the spouses
- Health and other lifestyle needs of the spouses
- Standard of living during the marriage
- Property awarded to the spouses during the division of assets
- Earning potential of the spouses
- Ability of a spouse to pay alimony
- Sacrifices made by either spouse during the marriage to support the other’s career or education, including staying home with the children
- General principles of equity
The court has a great deal of discretion in whether it will award spousal support, as well as the amount that will be required and the duration of spousal support payments. In rare cases, the judge may award permanent spousal support. This could include situations where the one spouse has little career experience and few marketable skills, one spouse significantly out-earns the other or the presence of a serious mental or physical illness. Each case is decided on its own merits.
Whether you are seeking spouse support or suspect that your spouse will seek it from you, it is critical that you have a lawyer who is knowledgeable in handling these matters and can effectively present your case before a judge.