When you are going through a divorce, it’s wise that you have spousal support lawyers by your side to help you with the negotiations.
Factors that determine spousal support
The amount of spousal support that you have to pay depends on up to 20 factors. The most common ones being:
Length of marriage: Obviously, the longer the marriage, the higher the chances that the judge will order spousal support. If you have a shorter marriage, you most likely won’t be required to pay it.
Income of each spouse: The bigger the income difference between spouses, the higher the chances that one of the spouses will be required to pay spousal support.
Age, education level, and future ability to earn income: If both of you are young and you have the same level of education and job skills, the judge is less likely to order spousal support.
If on the other hand, the dependent spouse is older, has less education and few job skills, chances are high that the judge will order spousal support.
Fault: Who contributed more to the breakdown of the marriage? The judge may pay attention to this.
When you are going through a divorce, you should note that there are many types of spousal support options that you can choose from. The most common ones being:
You don’t have to wait until the judge makes the final ruling on the amount of spousal support that you should pay. If you have a lower-earning spouse, you can come up with a spousal support arrangement that will cushion the spouse.
While the divorce process is going on, reach an agreement on the amount that the higher earning partner will be paying.
Rehabilitative and short-term support
Short term support is often ordered by the court when the marriage was short.
Also known as “bridge the gap” support, rehabilitative support is a form of short-term support designed to help the dependent spouse get retrained and back into the work environment. This support lasts until the recipient goes back to work.
You should note that the date isn’t set when it should end. If you are the one paying it, you have to wait until the recipient completes the retraining and finds employed.
If you feel that the recipient isn’t getting the necessary training or getting a job, you can ask the court to reduce the support amount or set a date when you should stop paying. Remember, when you are looking for a modification, you should have proof that your ex isn’t working hard enough.
Permanent or long-term support
The judge will order long term support if you have been married for a long time (usually more than 10 years). The judge can also order it if they are convinced that the dependent can’t go back into the workforce.
While the spousal support is said to be permanent, you should note that it ends when the payer or recipient dies. It also ends when the recipient remarries.
In most states, it will end when the recipient begins living with another person in a marriage like a relationship where the couple provides mutual support and share the financial responsibilities.
This doesn’t originate from a financial need—it’s a form of compensating a spouse who sacrificed their education, training, and career advancement to take care of the family. Since the support isn’t tied to a financial need, the support ends when the court order stipulates.
Regardless of the type of support that it’s handed to you, you should do your research with your divorce lawyers Fairfax VA to ensure that you aren’t getting the shorter end of the stick.