Mesa Spousal Support Attorney
20+ Years of Shared Experience in Family Law
Spousal support (also called spousal maintenance or alimony) is a set,
monthly payment that some spouses can request in the aftermath of a
divorce. Essentially, spousal support is used to help a spouse get back on his
or her feet financially when the marriage is terminated. It is a helpful
tool for spouses that were homemakers during the marriage or spouses that
relied heavily upon their spouse's income to make ends meet financially.
Types of Spousal Maintenance in Arizona
Arizona family laws allow for several different kinds of spousal maintenance or alimony to
be used for specific circumstances. All alimony is awarded at the discretion
of a judge. An experienced divorce lawyer can help you build a case for
a favorable alimony ruling.
The main types of alimony are:
Pendente Lite Maintenance
This is spousal maintenance that is used during the limbo between filing
for divorce and the final divorce decree. Spouses receiving pendente lite
alimony must remember that it is temporary and will end as soon as the
final order is entered. In some cases, a judge may order pendente lite
alimony for a spouse after the divorce is declared to help that individual
get back on his or her feet. The order may direct one spouse to pay the
other a lump sum of money or a monthly amount.
Permanent Spousal Maintenance
Permanent alimony is increasingly rare in Arizona, as most judges are
starting to look at maintenance as a rehabilitative tool. In some marriages
of long duration, the judge may declare that one spouse pay the other
spouse monthly alimony without a set termination. While permanent spousal
maintenance is indefinite, it will not necessarily last until the spouse
passes away. If a spouse gets remarried or becomes financially stable,
the alimony may be terminated. Permanent alimony is normally only used
if a person is unable to become self-supporting due to age or disability.
The courts can award limited alimony as a reimbursement to a spouse who
contributed to the advanced education or the earning capacity of the other
spouse. Normally, these payments will end after a short amount of time
or after the amount of the financial contributions is repaid.
Are You Eligible for Maintenance?
The court must determine that you have a financial need before they will
allow you to collect spousal maintenance. If a spouse is self-sufficient
through employment, the courts often do not award alimony. However, if
one spouse has
custody of a disabled child or a very young child, the courts will take into account
how this may affect the individual's ability to get a job. The courts
will also consider whether or not an older spouse served as a homemaker
and if this affects his or her ability to secure a job in the future.
The court will also consider the following questions:
Does the spouse have enough property after the
division to provide for reasonable needs?
- Can the spouse maintain a standard of living comparable to his or her post-divorce
- Did one spouse contribute to the others educational opportunities?
- Is one spouse unable to be self-sufficient through appropriate employment?
If you want more information about spousal maintenance, don't hesitate
to contact our Mesa divorce attorneys today for more information. We can
help you learn about the tax effects of spousal support, whether or not
you qualify for spousal support, and approximately how much spousal support
you may be required to pay. Having represented families in Mesa since
1997, we are prepared to provide the answers and counsel you need.
Call (480) 359-1334 today to learn more in an