You know your divorce is going to change virtually every area of your life, especially your finances. If you have concerns about the potential impact this process may have, it may benefit you to know about alimony, also called spousal support. It is in your interests to know whether you could be eligible for this support and how you can pursue the amount you need to look to your future with confidence.
There are divorces in which two New Jersey spouses will reach an agreement regarding the amount of support one of them will receive from the other, and litigation over the matter is not necessary. In your case, it may be necessary to petition the court for the amount to which you believe you have a rightful claim. An order for alimony and the amount granted will depend on a number of factors that are unique to your individual situation.
The factors that influence alimony payments
The intent of alimony is to offset the economic inequity sometimes caused by a divorce. If you are the lesser-earning spouse or you did not work outside of the home during your marriage, you could be eligible for these payments. There is no set amount of alimony automatically granted to eligible recipients, but the following factors could influence the duration and number of payments:
- The length of the marriage
- The amount earned by each spouse during the marriage
- The ages and physical conditions of each spouse
- Standard of living enjoyed by the couple during the marriage
- The ability of the higher-earning spouse to support the other
- The amount of time you would need to become financially self-sufficient
Spousal support could be permanent or temporary, depending on the details of your individual situation. For example, you may receive alimony for the amount of time estimated for you to secure employment or a higher-paying job.
Intentional pursuit of a suitable outcome
The issue of spousal support can be complex. You may feel you deserve alimony, but the other party may be reluctant to make these payments. Whether you are negotiating these terms in out-of-court meetings or you will have to fight for your rightful support in court, you will find it helpful to know your rights and how you can seek terms that will allow you to secure a suitable outcome.