When a couple divorces, they must handle several legal matters before their marriage is officially dissolved. An important part of divorce is making decisions regarding spousal support, also known as alimony. Alimony is court-ordered financial support from one spouse to another. These payments occur for a period of time after the divorce to allow both spouses to stay afloat financially. If one spouse is the child’s caretaker, they may not have a salary of their own. Other times, one spouse may be the provider for the family, leaving the other spouse in an unfair fiscal situation when a marriage ends. Alimony payments let a dependent spouse move on with their life and get back on their feet without being in financial trouble.
Types of Alimony
The state of New Jersey offers four different types of alimony that depend on a couple’s personal situation. The different types of alimony are:
- Open Durational Alimony: For couples who were married or in a civil union for more than 20 years. It enforces support payments with no end date until there is a reason to terminate. Situations that allow for termination may include cohabitation, remarriage, if the spouse paying becomes disabled or unemployed, or if the dependent spouse becomes independent.
- Limited Duration Alimony: For marriages or civil unions that last less than 20 years. Payments should be set for no longer than the length of the marriage. It also may be terminated depending on a change in circumstances.
- Rehabilitative Alimony: If the dependent spouse deferred their career to support the other spouse and help the family. This may require payments that fund schooling or training for the dependent spouse.
- Reimbursement Alimony: Designed to reimburse a spouse if they financially supported the other spouse’s education or training.
There are some divorce cases in which the marriage does not end on good terms. When this happens, the subject of alimony can become very difficult if one spouse does not financially support the other. It is for this reason that the court makes all of the decisions about alimony. When a court makes their decision, they consider several factors in the marriage. This may include:
- The length of the marriage
- The age and health of each spouse
- The earning capacity of each spouse
- The needs of the dependent spouse
- The independent party’s ability to support the dependent party
- Whether the dependent party had a significant absence from the job market
- The equitable distribution of property
- Each spouse’s responsibility for any children they have
- The standard of living the couple established during their marriage
- If there is any income available from investments
- If there are any tax implications from spousal support payments
When a court makes decisions about alimony, they usually do not consider marital fault. This means they do not make any decisions based on if one spouse was at fault for the end of their relationship.
Contact our Firm
If you are going through a divorce and wish to know your options regarding alimony, contact the Law Office of Sabrina Gianna, LLC. today.
Matters of divorce and family law require the attention and skill of an experienced attorney who will fight for your future. If you need a divorce and family law attorney in Ocean County, New Jersey, contact the Law Office of Sarina Gianna, LLC today to schedule a consultation.