Spousal Support: 4 Questions That You'Ll Want Answers To


Whether you know it as spousal support or alimony, you know that it can often be part of a divorce. It involves one spouse paying their divorced spouse a certain amount of money for a certain period of time. Those are the basics. However, when it comes to the nitty-gritty of spousal support, there may be a lot of questions. Some of these questions are answered below.

How Exactly Is Spousal Support Calculated?

With spousal support, there is not a specific, clear-cut guideline to determine the exact amount of spousal support that a spouse may get when they divorced. These laws vary from one state to the next. However, the basic factors are the same: amount of income, length of marriage, earning capacity of both spouses, standard of living while married and the children. Depending on the state in which you live, fault of the marriage falling apart could play a role.

How Long Will Alimony Last?

As with the exact amount, the length of time that you will receive alimony varies and depends on a number of factors, including state law. You may receive spousal support for the rest of your life, or it may be just a few months. In Texas, the cap is set at 10 years. Ultimately, one of the primary factors that will be considered is the spouse's need. For example, if you were receiving alimony for a few months and then you returned back to work and were able to support yourself, the alimony amount may be reduced or it could be eliminated altogether.

What Can Be Done When An Ex-Spouse Refuses to Pay Alimony?

If your ex-spouse has been ordered by the court to pay spousal support to you and he or she is refusing to do so, you may have to go back to court for a contempt hearing. At the very least, you may need to consider mediation. In some cases, it may be possible to obtain an order that will garnish your spouse's wages to guarantee that he or she is paying you the money that has been ordered to you.

Do Taxes Have To Be Paid on Alimony?

When it comes to alimony, there are indeed tax implications for both parties, according to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). For those who receive spousal support, it is considered income and you must report it as income. This means that you must pay applicable taxes on the amount that you receive each year. For the payer, alimony payments are typically tax deductible.  

If you are getting a divorce and have questions about spousal support, consult with an experienced divorce attorney. He or she will help you make sure that you file all the necessary paperwork and get the amount of alimony that you deserve based on the criteria in place for your particular state. Contact a firm like Nichols, Speidel, & Nichols for more information.


17 September 2015

do you really need an attorney?

There are so many legal situations that you can find yourself involved with, but do those situations really require that you hire an attorney? Some instances you may not need an attorney working with you, but in other situations, an attorney is definitely a necessity. This blog contains tips and advice for working through the different elements of the legal system. You will find information that can help you determine if/when you need to hire an attorney to represent your best interests. Knowing this information can help you avoid the costly mistake of taking on the legal system without someone who knows how the system works.