Factors Impacting Alimony

Divorce Lawyer

Divorce can be a tricky and uncomfortable situation. When a divorce is pending and decisions are still being finalized, it can be easy to want to move on from that person and find a new relationship. However, if you are receiving—or plan to receive—alimony from your spouse after the divorce, it is important to know how getting into a relationship and even cohabitating with someone else can impact this alimony, as a family lawyer, such as from Daniel J. Wright, can explain. When you work with a lawyer, you know that they will work hard to give you the best outcome. Divorce, alimony, and new relationships can be difficult to juggle, though, which is why we are here to answer your questions and give you the best guidance possible. 

How do I know if I can get alimony?

When spouse A makes significantly more than spouse B, but spouse B has a higher cost of living than what they make, a judge can order spouse A to make a lump sum or continuous payments to spouse B. While the amount of alimony varies between couples, a judge will take into account many different factors, including spouse B’s ability to get a better job, their physical and mental health, and even their education level.

Is it possible for a spouse’s marital misconduct to affect alimony?

This will depend on the judge involved in your divorce case as well as the state. For example, if a spouse was particularly violent during the time of their marriage or if the spouse deserted the family or committed adultery, a judge can take this into consideration and even increase the alimony award.

I am moving on from my spouse and have moved in with someone else. How does this affect alimony?

It is possible for living with someone else to affect your alimony, even if you are divorced. Typically, a court can terminate alimony for three reasons:

  1.     One of the spouses passes away.
  2.     The dependent spouse cohabitates with someone else.
  3.     The dependent spouse remarries.

Thus, depending on which state you are in, if you move in with a significant other, it is possible that a court will immediately terminate your alimony award. The supporting spouse can also file with the court to have this terminated.

Is it possible to only receive temporary alimony?

Yes. Depending on your situation, a judge may award only temporary alimony while a divorce is being finalized to help the dependent spouse as they try to cover expenses. When the court finalizes your divorce, the judge can either decide to continue alimony on a more permanent basis or stop it. It is also important to note that if you move in with a significant other during your divorce a judge can also terminate your alimony.

If you have any further questions on what factors can influence alimony support, please reach out to an attorney now.