Alimony, or spousal support, is a financial payment that is made from a higher earning spouse or former spouse to a lower earning or non-earning spouse or former spouse in order to maintain that spouse at the financial level they were at prior to separation or divorce.
A Fairfax alimony attorney experienced in family law will best be able to assist anyone in determining alimony. Unlike child support, there is no specific and strict rule the court has to follow in terms of determining whether support should be paid and how much. Consult a Virginia family law attorney, who has experienced litigating alimony cases and will provide you a better opportunity to make the best case possible to the court regarding their spousal support case.
Determining Spousal Support
Temporary alimony or spousal support is traditionally determined based on a formula that takes a portion of the higher earning spouses income and a portion of the lower earning spouses income to determine what the temporary support amount should be. When it comes to permanent support, support that is going to be paid after a divorce is final, the court is required to consider a number of factors, but the primary two factors that the court is going to examine are the ability of the higher-earning spouse to pay, and the financial need of the lower earning spouse.
A lot of times lawyers start with at the ability to pay as a payor and the financial need of the payee. There are other factors that are set out in the law that the court is required to consider that a Fairfax alimony lawyer will consider, as well. For example, the Virginia court is required to consider the lifestyle that the parties became accustomed to during marriage, the ability of the party requesting salvage report to work, the health of both parties, and various other factors that are outlined in Virginia law.
In most cases, alimony is modifiable upon a change in circumstances, with a material change in circumstances that impacts the finances of those respective parties. A Fairfax alimony attorney will be helpful in these instances of modification. The most common situations in which a person is able to stop making alimony payments are when the recipient of support remarries and when the payor of support loses their job or has a decrease in income as a result of something out of their hands.
Working with a Lawyer
The importance of a lawyer in a case like this is that there is no concrete rule or calculation for determining what permanent spousal support should be. For example, for child support, there is a calculation that has been created by the Virginia legislator that courts are required to use. That does not exist for spousal support. As a result, it is important for a person who could be paying or receiving spousal support to have an alimony attorney in Fairfax who has experience with the court.
Because a lawyer who has experience in spousal support cases in Virginia has a good perspective on what many judges will consider, that lawyer can be useful in looking at the facts that exist in a person’s particular case and in applying them in the best way that is most advantageous to the clients to present to the court when litigating an alimony case. Because there is no concrete formula for spousal support, a Virginia alimony attorney’s spousal support experience is going to be a particularly knowledgeable position in this area of law.