Alimony Lawyer in Worcester Assisting Clients With Alimony & Spousal Maintenance
Following a divorce, there is often a lot going on. Not only has your life completely changed, but now the court is likely involved in determining how much money you will have to pay or receive from your former spouse. Thankfully, with an alimony lawyer on your team, you will not have to tackle this complicated legal battle on your own or figure out what all of these rules and decisions mean for you and your family.
When you retain a Worcester alimony lawyer, your attorney can advocate for you, no matter if you are the one having to pay alimony or looking to receive it from your ex-spouse. With these lawyers working on your behalf, you can expect that your rights will remain protected, and these attorneys will help get you through these legal proceedings, making sure you understand everything that is going on from start to finish. Divorce lawyers at the Law Office of Polly Tatum put the attorney-client relationship at the forefront of their dealings. Give the Law Office of Polly Tatum a call at 508-795-1557 for a free initial consultation and general information purposes.
What is Alimony?
Alimony often refers to a court-ordered payment to a former spouse within a separation or a divorce agreement. Alimony is generally provided to offer financial support to the ex-spouse who makes no income or has a significantly lower income than their former partner. As a result, these payments are designed to equalize the financial resources of the divorcing couple.
However, it is important to note that alimony is generally awarded when the spouses have been married a long time and have unequal earning power. Consequently, the amount that the court gives out is often a pre-determined award that ensures the spouse can continue to live the lifestyle to which they are accustomed to following their divorce. In addition, if a spouse refuses to pay this alimony, they can often face criminal or civil charges.
Alimony Vs Spousal Support
There is no difference between the terms alimony and spousal support. In truth, they both mean the same thing. However, alimony is an older and outdated term that was often associated with men supporting women since, in the past, women would often leave their jobs to take care of their children.
In comparison, the term spousal support has nothing to do with gender. Instead, it refers to a former spouse with the resources and income necessary to support the other spouse following a divorce. As a result, the term spousal support focuses on income and earning potential instead of gender roles.
How Long Does Alimony Last?
Since the implementation of the Alimony Reform Act, the duration of alimony has been limited. Now, alimony duration technically corresponds to the length of time the couple was married.
In general, if a couple had been married for:
- Five years or less: The alimony cannot exceed 50% of the marriage length
- Ten years or less: The alimony cannot exceed 60% of the marriage length
- Fifteen years or less: The alimony cannot exceed 70% of the marriage length
- Twenty years or less: The alimony cannot exceed 80% of the marriage length
- Twenty years or more: The alimony will be for an indefinite duration
How is Alimony Calculated?
According to Massachusetts regulations, alimony should not exceed the recipient spouse’s needs or be higher than 30-35% of the difference in income between the partners.
However, to determine the appropriate amount of alimony that a spouse can receive, the court will often look at the following factors:
- How long was the couple married?
- How old is each spouse?
- What is the health of each spouse?
- How much does each spouse make?
- Is each spouse employed?
- What is the employability of each spouse?
- What are the spouse’s non-economic and economic contributions to their marriage?
- What was the couple’s lifestyle like when they were married?
- Did either spouse lose economic opportunities because of their marriage?
Additionally, the family law judge may also consider other factors that they find relevant, which can help them figure out how much a spouse needs to pay in spousal support cases.
How Can Alimony Lawyers Help with Alimony?
Going through a divorce is stressful enough. Figuring out alimony payments on top of everything else and fighting for this money can be an overwhelming ordeal that nobody wants to go through alone.
If you are currently going through a divorce or are about to get divorced, then it is important that you speak with an experienced alimony lawyer. They can help protect your rights and make sure that you receive the financial support that you need and deserve.
Fortunately, with an experienced alimony lawyer at your side, these attorneys can represent you in alimony negotiations or when you are trying to change a pre-arranged amount. Ultimately, providing you the legal help you need to make sure you get the money you are entitled to.
When Should I Contact a Spousal Support Lawyer?
In general, it is a good idea to contact an attorney any time you are considering divorce or legal separation, or have been served with divorce papers. An attorney can help you understand your rights and options and help ensure that your interests are protected throughout the process.
There are a few specific circumstances in which hiring a spousal support lawyer is particularly important. For example, if you believe that your spouse has hidden assets or income, an attorney can help you investigate and uncover these assets. If you are the breadwinner in your family, an attorney can help you negotiate a fair and equitable property division agreement. And if domestic violence is an issue in your marriage, an experienced divorce lawyer can help you protect yourself and your children from an ex-spouse.
If you are dealing with alimony issues, do not wait any longer to get the legal help you need. Instead, reach out to a skilled Worcester spousal support lawyer today and let the family law attorneys show you how they can help during these stressful proceedings. Our phone number is 508-795-1557; contact us today to get started.