Regardless of whether you are asking for alimony or expecting to pay for it, it is important you understand what factors a judge looks at when determining how much needs to be paid. Even if you and your spouse decide to work out a compromise outside of court, you need to understand all the considerations involved in calculating pay.
Need is not just based on how much the alimony recipient requires to pay bills, but other factors, too. For instance, how the marital property was divided up is important. If the recipient is getting most of the property, a judge could possibly lower the amount ordered.
The recipient's standard of living during the marriage is also important. Enough alimony could be ordered to ensure that the recipient's standard of living will be maintained.
Other factors that could be considered includes how long the marriage lasted, whether or not the recipient was entirely dependent on the other spouse for support during the marriage, and how much job training the recipient has.
Ability to Pay
Even if the recipient has a great need for support, how much the paying spouse can afford is important. The judge usually will not order support that exceeds the ability of the spouse to pay.
The possible earning capacity of the paying spouse could be considered though. If the spouse has job training or education that could result in more money earned, the judge could factor this into determining the amount ordered.
For instance, if the paying spouse has a degree and could earn far more than he or she is currently earning, the judge could order alimony based on the earning capacity and not actual earnings.
Earning capacity is also considered for the recipient. If the recipient has the education or training to get a job or a better paying one, the amount he or she can receive could be reduced. In fact, the judge could order that you only receive alimony for a brief period of time while you obtain work. Once that time passes, you might have to find other ways to support yourself.
Calculating how much should be paid in alimony is complicated. Judges can use many more factors, including who was at fault for the end of the marriage, to determine how much is owed. Work with a family law attorney (such as one from LaCroix & Hand PC) to ensure that you are fairly treated according to the law.
I'll be up front: I have a criminal record. As someone who's spent lots--and lots--of time looking for a job in my life, I've gotten used to being up front with this fact. It's difficult to get hired with this on my record, and frankly, it never gets less scary to have to tell an interviewer about it. But that doesn't mean I'm unemployable. I'm a hard worker who can bring a lot to any company. And I also know what an employer needs to do for me. I know my rights. There's no federal law protecting me from discrimination due to my record, but there are plenty of state laws that make it a little easier for me. If you're looking for a job and you have a criminal record, read through this information. Protect yourself during a job search. Know your rights.