Law Office of Daniel E. Forrest, P.A.

You know that alimony is something some people pay to their exes following a divorce, but what is it? Does it have any importance in your case? Spousal support is an important payment that is paid to a divorcing spouse who earns less than the other. The payment is intended to help the individual as he or she starts a new, independent life following divorce.

This kind of assistance can support a number of expenses from utility bills to household costs. While it's most often discussed as a cash payment, the truth is that assets may also be used as a form of spousal support. For instance, giving a home to a spouse in exchange for spousal support may be allowed by the courts.

Spousal support, otherwise known as spousal maintenance or alimony, is paid by the higher-earning spouse. The amount to be paid is determined by the length of the marriage, the expenses of each spouse, the health and ages of each partner and the overall earning abilities shown by the spouses.

If you are getting a divorce and feel you will not be able to support yourself afterward, you should speak with your attorney about spousal support. This is there for people who cannot support themselves after a divorce or who have limited earning power. Perhaps you had to watch your children, so you didn't have a full-time job, or maybe you supported your spouse while he or she went to school but now haven't had the chance to go yourself. Your attorney can help you get what you need, so you can support yourself.

Source:, "Importance of Spousal Maintenance after Separation & Divorce," Jessica Martin, accessed June 23, 2017

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