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Find Alimony Lawyer

Find Alimony Lawyer

Alimony

When a couple divorces, they are inherently less financially stable. If both spouses worked, their buying power decreases mutually, but if one spouse stays at home, their income has effectively been reduced to 0. In order to protect spouses from potential financial ruin, the couple may agree or the court may mandate that one spouse pay alimony to the other.


Featured Alimony Lawyers

Law Office of Michael D. Rose

Google rating
4.2
28 years in practice
Alimony, Child Custody, Child Support, Divorce Law, Domestic Violence
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The Law Office of J. Michael Clay

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5
32 years in practice
Adoption, Alimony, Child Custody, Child Support, Divorce & Family Law
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Foster-Morales PLLC

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1
33 years in practice
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Kenna Law Center, PLLC

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4.4
9 years in practice
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The Law Offices of Piazza, Simmons & Grant, L.L.C.

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3.8
51 years in practice
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The Law Offices of Jonathan A. Zahler, P.A.

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5
31 years in practice
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Maintaining a Reasonable Quality of Life

The purpose of alimony is to ensure that both spouses can enjoy a standard of living similar to one that they had while married. In most cases, this means that the more financially well-off spouse pays alimony to the less affluent spouse. The two most important considerations when it comes to alimony are how alimony is assigned and how it is taxed.

Alimony Assignment

How alimony is assigned depends strongly on the relative incomes of the spouses. Since alimony is designed to provide for a spouse who makes less money than the other, the bigger the disparity between spouses, the more alimony that may be ordered. Other factors may also come into play when deciding alimony.

For example, if one spouse delayed educational or professional opportunities in order to better serve the marriage, that loss of life opportunities may be taken into account when determining alimony payments. Additionally, if there has been abuse or infidelity in the marriage, alimony may be increased to compensate the harmed spouse.

Alimony Taxation

How alimony is taxed has actually changed in recent years. Historically, alimony was considered to be income for the recipient. Therefore, alimony payments were taxed to the recipient, and the payer of alimony was allowed to count money spent on alimony as a deduction.

In 2017, however, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 was passed. This law reversed the traditional interpretation of alimony as income for the recipient and instead loaded all of the financial responsibility on the payer of alimony. Now divorces that are finalized after Jan 1, 2019, have a very different taxation structure. Under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, alimony was declared to be the financial responsibility of the payer, negating the ability of the payer to use alimony as a deduction and forcing them to pay income tax on money spent on alimony.

Fighting to Protect Your Interests

Alimony is one of the top reasons for divorces to become contested. Debating who pays alimony, how much, and under what circumstances are all important questions that need to be answered before the divorce can finalize. In order to ensure that your interests are protected during a contested divorce, you will need the help of an experienced family law attorney. An experienced family law attorney will be able to use their experience, legal skills, and shrewd negotiating abilities to decisively argue your case before judges and mediators in order to expedite the divorce process and deliver the results you want.

In order to achieve this best outcome, however, you will need an attorney who has the expertise and resources to take your case all the way. That’s why you should contact Attorney at Law. By partnering with AAL, you will be able to avoid slogging through the quagmire of unscrupulous lawyers looking to exploit your case.

At AAL, we only partner with the best firms in your area, helping you find the best attorney for your case. Don’t wait, contact AAL today for a free no-obligation consultation and begin your journey to justice.

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Alimony Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is alimony?

Alimony is a payment or series of payments designed to maintain the standard of living that a former spouse enjoyed while married after they are divorced. Alimony payments can be a temporary accommodation that occurs during the divorce proceedings or they can be a permanently implemented part of the divorce agreement. 

In general, alimony is given to a spouse who makes less than the other. When deciding alimony, the court will take into account factors including differences in income, life circumstances, and relative need. Additionally, if the divorce is filed due to some misdeed such as abuse or infidelity, that may also impact the alimony decisions.

2. Is alimony taxable?

Alimony is taxable as income, but how it is taxed has recently changed. Before Jan 1, 2019, alimony was considered income for the recipient and a loss to the payer. Therefore, the payer of alimony could write off the alimony as a deduction, while the receiver would owe money on their alimony payments. However, with the passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, alimony payers became responsible for paying taxes on their alimony and can no longer count it as a deduction on their taxes.

3. What is alimony based on?

Each state has its own rules for calculating alimony, but broadly alimony is determined by comparing the incomes of both spouses, the payer’s ability to pay, and the recipient’s need for money. This can mean that if one spouse is financially successful and the other is not employed, the alimony will be greater than if both spouses were working.

4. How long does alimony last?

Alimony can last until the financial obligation between former spouses is dissolved. This can be dissolved after a period of time specified in the divorce documents, such as in the case of temporary alimony payments during the divorce procedure, or it can be ongoing until the alimony recipient remarries. Sometimes a prenuptial agreement will include the terms for alimony payment or state that in the event of divorce, neither spouse will be financially responsible for the other.

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