The spousal support lawyers at the Zachary Law Group in Chandler, Arizona can help you seek spousal support or help you understand your spousal support obligation if you are planning to get divorced. When it comes to settling a divorce, few issues can raise as much anger as spousal support, but when both parties understand the purpose of spousal support, it can make the settlement process easier, help the negotiation process move along more smoothly, and potentially lead to a faster divorce settlement.
If you are getting divorced in Chandler, Arizona, one of the questions you might be asking is whether you are entitled to receive spousal support or alimony. Many factors must be considered when determining whether a person is entitled to receive spousal support during a divorce. Spousal support is designed to provide financial support to a spouse who earns less than a former spouse, provide support for a spouse who stayed home to raise children, or provide a stable standard of living for a spouse when a couple divorces after a long marriage or after a marriage where there were significant differences in each spouse’s income. If you are getting divorced and have questions about spousal support, reach out to the Chandler Arizona spousal support lawyers at the Zachary Law Group. Our firm can review your financial situation, help you finalize your divorce, and help you seek the spousal support you may be entitled to receive.
Different Types of Spousal Support in Chandler, Arizona
What many people getting divorced may not always understand is that, in most cases, spousal support is temporary. Temporary spousal support may be awarded to a spouse during the divorce process, or it may be awarded for a brief period of time after the divorce is settled to give a lower-earning spouse time to get on his or her feet, receive training, or adjust to a new income. Most spousal support is temporary. The temporary support is designed to be used to financially support a spouse while he or she receives job training, skills, and adjusts to financial independence from a spouse if he or she was financially supported by a spouse.
While in the past, permanent spousal support may have been the norm, permanent spousal support is now quite rare. Only in cases where a marriage was very long, where both partners are older, or where one spouse is disabled or completely reliant on the other spouse will a court consider permanent spousal support. Making a case for permanent spousal support is challenging.
Generally, when seeking spousal support, the real questions will be:
- How much support will a spouse need to get on his or her feet, and receive education and training to become financially independent?
- How long will this take? How long will the support period last?
The spousal support lawyers at the Zachary Law Firm in Chandler, Arizona can help you answer these questions. We can review your family’s unique situation, review your finances, and help you understand your options and rights. Whether you are the spouse paying support or the spouse who may receive support, it can be helpful to plan ahead for your financial life after divorce before you file for divorce. The spousal support attorneys in Chandler, Arizona at the Zachary Law Firm can help you.
Why Spousal Support?
If you have to pay spousal support, you may be wondering why on earth you should have to support your ex financially. After all, it’s one thing to pay child support, but spousal support, too? Understanding why the courts award spousal support may be able to help you negotiate a deal with your spouse, reduce anger, and help you avoid costly litigation in court. Why do courts award spousal support?
Judges award spousal support when one partner doesn’t have sufficient assets or income to support herself or himself. Yet, this factor alone isn’t often enough to warrant long-term spousal support. However, if your spouse gave up career opportunities to raise your children, or support your career, the courts may determine that spousal support is needed for your partner to gain skills and education to compete on the job market and build a career of his or her own. If your spouse has been married to you for some time, is older, or is infirm, he or she may require spousal support and may not be able to join the workforce and spousal support may be needed to supplement social security and other safety nets. If your spouse needs to care for children, spousal support can provide for childcare or pay to support the spouse who cares for children.
When thinking about the spousal support negotiation process, it can be helpful to think about the ways in which your spouse has helped your career or income, or if you are seeking spousal support, it can help to think about the added earning potential your spouse has gained thanks to your support. Support isn’t always financial. Sometimes it can be caring for children or elderly loved ones.
Need help negotiating spousal support amounts? Reach out to the Chandler, Arizona spousal support law firm at the Zachary Law Group today. We can help you reach a spousal support agreement that is best for your family.
What Factors Can Prevent Me from Receiving Spousal Support in Arizona?
There are several factors that the courts will consider when determining spousal support awards in Chandler, Arizona. While the court will consider the length of your marriage, each spouse’s financial situation, and the standard of living that both parties enjoyed during the marriage, there are few things that can outright bar a person from receiving alimony. If you signed a prenuptial agreement that bars you from collecting alimony, there is a possibility that the court may uphold this agreement. Yet, prenuptial agreements may not always be upheld by the court. For example, if the agreement was signed shortly before you were married, or if you didn’t have a chance to have your own lawyer review the agreement, you may be able to show the court that the agreement is not valid. There are other factors that can render a prenuptial agreement invalid. For example, if you will end up on welfare or state aid because your ex won’t pay alimony, the courts may require that your ex pay alimony. Before assuming that a prenuptial agreement bars you from collecting spousal support, consider reaching out to the Zachary Law Firm, spousal support attorneys in Chandler, Arizona.
What Are Some Common Alimony Mistakes?
Increasingly, courts favor temporary spousal support over permanent support. Most, but not all, spousal support awards go to individuals who have been married for a long time, or to individuals who significantly supported a spouse’s career or business. Yet, there are certainly some assumptions that individuals make about spousal support that can harm them. Spousal support is generally awarded to give a person time to rebuild their career, go back to school, get work retraining, and help with childcare should the caretaking spouse return to work.
What are some things to consider when thinking about your alimony award? For one, remember that it is more expensive to pay for two households instead of one. Your lifestyle may need to change. If you plan to receive a substantial alimony award in a lump sum, you may want to speak to a financial planner to help you invest the money wisely. If your spousal support will only last for a short period of time, it may be wise to plan ahead. How will you get your work skills up to date? What is your 2, 3, and 5-year plan?
In general, alimony shouldn’t be seen as a paycheck. If you plan to keep the family house, consider how much it will cost to maintain in taxes and mortgage before you make a decision. Be realistic about what you can afford. Sometimes, it makes sense to downgrade a bit and stretch your alimony payments further.
Getting the spousal support you deserve is also an important step. The Zachary Law Group, spousal support lawyers in Chandler, Arizona, help individuals fight to get the alimony award they may deserve. Contact us today to learn more.
What Factors are Considered When Courts Determine Spousal Support Awards?
The courts will consider several factors when determining how long spousal support will be paid and how much will be paid. What factors will the judge consider? Here are a few:
- How long you were married. Longer marriages will generally result in more spousal support and longer periods of support. If you were married for a very long period of time and are at retirement age, you may even be able to receive spousal support for life in some cases.
- Standard of living during the marriage. The courts will consider your lifestyle before the marriage ended and will consider this when determining a spousal support award.
- Did you support your spouse while he trained to be a surgeon or lawyer? Did you stay home to raise the kids while your spouse went on to enjoy an all-star career? If you made sacrifices to your own career and earning capacity, you may be entitled to receive spousal support.
- Child care. Will you continue to stay home to care for children? Will you need to hire childcare services to return to work? If you are the children’s primary caretaker, spousal support can help you care for your children while you find work.
- Need for work retraining or school. If you need to return to school or need work retraining to re-join the workforce, you may be entitled to receive spousal support to give you time and money to rebuild your skills.
- Your needs. Will you lose your health insurance due to the divorce? Will you be at risk of going on welfare without support? These factors can be considered when the courts make a spousal support determination.
Do you have a question about spousal support? The Zachary Law Group, spousal support attorneys in Chandler, Arizona, work closely with individuals getting divorced. We can review your financial situation and help you understand what you may be entitled to receive so you can plan ahead. We can also fight for your rights either inside or outside of court.