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James D. Madden & Aruna P. Rodrigo, Family Law Attorneys

5 Things Judges Look for When Deciding Alimony 01-15-2016

5 Things Judges Look for When Deciding Alimony

Divorce can be a stressful time in any couple’s life. It is never easy to admit when a relationship is not working. When two people decide to dissolve a marriage, it is not just a matter of going their own way. Things like support, property division, and custody must be taken into account. Financial matters can cause contention between two people. That is why matters of alimony must be taken seriously.

Spousal support is set up to ensure both parties maintain the quality of life they experienced during their marriage. If one spouse was the main earner, they will be expected to support their ex until the latter can earn their own income. If you are going through a divorce, it is important that you understand what a judge looks for when deciding on alimony.

Common Factors That Decide Alimony Payments

When a judge presides over a divorce, they want to make sure both parties receive fair treatment. They look at key things to determine the couple’s quality of life and who should pay to help the other party. This is used to protect individuals who forgo their professional careers to care for children and home.

The five key factors for alimony include:

  1. Need – Did one spouse support both parties? Did the other spouse stay at home and make domestic duties priority? Do they need help stabilizing their finances after the split? These are all things a judge will question.
  2. Length of Marriage – How long a couple has been married also affects how much spousal support one party will have to pay the other. In marriages that have lasted for years, spousal support may be necessary because of the time outside of work for one party.
  3. Financial Situation – In some relationships, there is one party who earns the majority of the household income. While this works during the marriage, it can be problematic after a divorce. This is because one spouse does not have the same financial status as the other. Thus, alimony is payed to equalize circumstances.
  4. Age & Health – Age and health are other factors when determining support. If one party is significantly older or in deteriorating health, they will need financial help.
  5. Earning Capacity – In some cases, one party has more work experience and education than the other. It means they can find jobs. For the other party, it might mean they need time to acquire marketable skills so that they can earn their own income. The judge takes this into consideration.

At James D. Madden, Attorney at Law, we understand how difficult the divorce process can be. If you are seeking to dissolve your marriage, make sure you have the right legal representation to protect your interests. Our board certified family law specialist can help! Contact our Rancho Cucamonga spousal support attorney today for a free consultation.

Categories: Spousal Support

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