Alimony, otherwise known as spousal maintenance, can have a big impact on both the one paying it and the one receiving it. It can greatly affect their finances and is a major consideration in their financial planning. Without it, many more unhappy couples would likely remain married. Why? If one spouse has filled the “homemaker” role while the other has developed their career, the nonworking spouse would otherwise have no way to finance their life if they divorced. The spouse who spent all those years working and earning would have been unable to do so if the other spouse had not stepped up at home, giving them the freedom and ability to go off to work. Recognizing this, the courts have formulated methods to calculate spousal maintenance payments. If you are considering divorce but have questions about alimony, a DuPage County, IL divorce lawyer can help clear up some of the confusion.
How Do the Courts Decide if Alimony Is Necessary?
Under certain circumstances, the courts could very well decide that spousal maintenance is not necessary in a divorce. For example, if both spouses work and earn enough to finance their own homes and lives, the courts could decide that spousal maintenance is not appropriate. Courts in the State of Illinois consider several factors when deciding about alimony for a specific couple, including:
Do either of the spouses own property? If one spouse works and the other owns rental properties that could serve as a source of income, alimony would likely be deemed inappropriate.
What expenses do each spouse have? If one spouse has significant regular expenses that they would not be able to otherwise cover, the court would likely grant them spousal maintenance.
How long was the couple married? The courts typically prefer not to grant alimony when a marriage has lasted only a few years. If a couple was married for a long time and during that time one spouse worked while the other took care of family and household responsibilities, the courts would highly likely grant alimony.
What sort of standard of living do the spouses maintain? The courts generally prefer to avoid one spouse’s lifestyle deteriorating much more drastically than the other, and will usually grant alimony as a way to prevent that from happening.
What is the earning potential of each spouse? Someone who has gotten degrees, been developing their career, and is now professionally established can expect a certain level of earning potential in the future. Someone who spent most of their adult years at home raising children will have a harder time guaranteeing any sort of earning potential. If they enter the workforce now, they will likely receive starting jobs with starting salaries, as opposed to someone who has been working in a certain field for over a decade. The courts take all of this into consideration when deciding about spousal maintenance in a divorce.
Schedule a Free Consultation with a Wheaton, IL Spousal Support Attorney
If you are considering divorce but are nervous about the kind of alimony arrangement you can expect, an experienced DuPage County, IL divorce lawyer can explain what steps you can take to help your financial stability in the future. Call [[title]] at [[phone]] today to schedule a free consultation.