The end of a marriage is always a difficult time. In addition to the obvious need to move out of a shared home, to make arrangements for the care and custody of children, it is also necessary for both people to consider how they will provide for their economic futures.
In some cases, one party to a divorce is far better able to achieve financial independence. These people may have more education, have a better work history, or have the resources to support themselves. In some cases, it may be necessary for a court to order one spouse to provide spousal support to the other.
A Frederick spousal support lawyer could help you to make the case for spousal support in conjunction with a divorce. A dedicated family law attorney could also help argue the other side of the case: that a spousal support order is unnecessary as the other party is fully able to support themselves.
When a Spousal Support Order May be Appropriate
A divorce will always have a significant life-changing effect on a person’s life. Not least of these changes are those that affect a person’s finances. While every couple has their own methods for sharing income and expenses in advance, the court may be tasked with making their financial decisions in the future. When the marriage ends, a person may find themselves unable to maintain their standard of living moving forward.
The ultimate goal of any divorce is to give both parties an equitable chance to thrive moving forward. Yet the simple fact remains that both parties may not be able to give themselves this chance. When this is the case, the court may order one party to provide spousal support. This may be done for a set period while the recipient:
- Finishes their education
- Obtains employment
- Gets a new place to live
Under Md. Code, Family Law §11-106, the court will evaluate the abilities of both parties to earning a living. The court will examine both parties’ incomes, education, and overall financial independence. A Frederick spousal support lawyer can help to provide more information about spousal support and to evaluate whether you may have a valid claim to these payments.
Making the Case Concerning Spousal Support in Court
According to Md. Code, Family Law §11-101, courts will never assume that spousal support will result from a divorce. Indeed, one party must actively petition the court to implement these orders. Either party may make these motions, and the court no longer makes any differentiation between former husbands and wives in issuing orders for spousal support.
The court has the power to issue a spousal support order for any period of time, even indefinitely. These orders may require payment for a set amount in regular intervals for a certain period of time or indefinitely. However, there are certainly situations where a former alimony order is no longer appropriate.
Under Md. Code, Family Law §11-107(a), either party to a spousal support order can ask the court to issue a modification of an alimony order when a material change in circumstances renders an existing order inappropriate if the award of alimony is, in fact, modifiable by the court. These changes in circumstances can include:
- The recipient finishing a college degree
- The recipient obtaining a lucrative new job
- The recipient getting remarried
- The payor losing a job
- The payor becoming disabled
A Frederick spousal support lawyer could provide more information about how to ask a court to issue a spousal support order. They could also help people who are currently bound under an existing order to ask a court to change the terms of that order under certain circumstances.
Talk to a Frederick Spousal Support Attorney Today
Spousal support can be an essential part of a divorce. However, spousal support is never a guaranteed result when a marriage ends. Still, either party to a divorce can ask a court to institute an order requiring them to provide support.
A Frederick spousal support lawyer could help you to push for the creation of a spousal support order during a divorce. They could also stand on the other side of the issue to argue against the court imposing an order upon you.
Finally, an attorney could work to modify an existing order in case of a material change in you or your spouses’ circumstances. Contact a Frederick spousal support lawyer today to make an appointment.