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Spousal support payments aren't automatic during a divorce

The issue of alimony is sometimes heard in high-profile divorce cases in which one former spouse wants the other one to continue to offer some support. It is also found in some high-asset divorce cases. If you think that alimony might be a component in your divorce, you should learn all you can about it so that you can decide what you are going to do.

Spousal support payments aren't something that is done automatically in a divorce. Instead, the person who wants to get the payments would have to bring it up during the divorce. You should realize that alimony payments are not subjected to the same strict laws as child support payments. Instead, courts have a lot of room to decide how alimony is handled in any case.

If a court decides to award alimony, there are several factors that are considered. A few of these include the health of each spouse, the ability of the potential recipient to support himself or herself, the length of the marriage and the income of the spouse who might be ordered to make the payments. Other considerations are also possible, so make sure you understand what the possibilities are in your case.

When you are seeking alimony, you should decide what type you are going to seek. You also have to determine how the alimony should be paid. For example, do you want monthly payments or would a lump sum payment be better? Be sure that you consider everything about alimony, including how it might affect your taxes or other aspects of your life, before you proceed.

Source: FindLaw, "Spousal Support (Alimony) Basics," accessed Nov. 04, 2016

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