Top Five Legal Questions about Alimony

After a divorce, people can worry about the income they were used to during the marriage. This can be a difficult situation for an individual. The offset income the spouse may get after a divorce is called alimony. It is determined by alimony guidelines and spousal support law. Given below are top 5 legal questions related to alimony.

Q. If an individual is on social security disability, how can alimony be calculated?
The courts may decide whether to award spousal support to an individual or not. The court may also decide the amount that may be given as spousal support. The alimony may be determined keeping in mind factors such as, financial recourses, time needed for training for employment or education, the couple’s standard of living when they were married, age and health of the spouse asking for support. One spouse can collect on the other spouse’s record, if the couple is divorcing after 10 years of marriage or more.

Q. Is it possible for the court to take money from a business account if an individual is unable to pay the alimony ordered by court or pays less than what has been ordered?
If an individual is not able to pay the spousal support ordered by the court, he/she can petition the court to reduce the amount of alimony or relieve him/her from paying the alimony. The court may not be able to take the money from the corporate assets of an individual if they are not attached to any personal assets. However, the court may be able to take money from the stock of the corporation depending on the value of the stock.

Q. Is there a formula to calculate alimony for self employed businesses?
There may not be a particular formula to calculate alimony for self employed businesses. Though there are guidelines to follow, it is up to the judges to decide the amount of spousal support. The court may consider the past tax returns before awarding alimony. However one may have to retain a local attorney to get the best possible representation in court.
Q. Is Texas the only state with 3 years as the maximum limit for spousal support?
Though Texas is the only state with a strict limit on spousal support, it can be waived if the spouse is mentally or physically disabled. In many states instead of awarding permanent spousal support, rehabilitative spousal support is awarded. However in some states, permanent alimony may be awarded if the couple has been married for a long term.

Q. In NY state, if a couple has been married for more than 7 years, but has no children or mortgage, can the wife still get alimony if she is a student and is not able to work?
Whether an individual gets alimony or not would not be based on whether the couple had children. The wife may get alimony irrespective of whether the couple has children or not. The alimony may depend on the number of years the couple has been married.