If you are divorcing from your current spouse and are worried about how you will be able to support yourself, then chances are you are considering fighting for alimony. Depending on the nature of your relationship with your spouse, you may or may not be able to come to an agreement on spousal support. So, this means that you will have to appear in front of a family court judge and have them decide the outcome for you both, so it may be beneficial to speak with a family lawyer. As the spouse hoping to receive alimony, it is important to be prepared with information that the judge may want to know, such as:
Your Current and Potential Earnings
If you were a stay-at-home parent or weren’t employed during your marriage, then let the judge know you have been out of the job market for some time. Provide financial paperwork that shows how much or how little you made throughout your marriage. Along with that, the judge may want to know about your work history, if any, and what kinds of jobs you may be qualified for now. The judge may ask if you went to college, received training related to a career path, took courses towards a degree, or completed some other educational program.
How Long It May Take For You To Obtain Employment
Depending on your experience, the judge may give you a designated period of time before the alimony ends. Or, the judge may necessitate that you check-in on a regular basis regarding potential job offers or how you have tried to obtain employment. If it seems like you aren’t trying hard enough to financially support yourself, then the judge may cancel the alimony permanently.
Whether Children Still Need a Stay-At-Home Parent
If you had children together, the judge may ask how old each child is and whether they need a full-time parent at home. If you are the custodial parent and children are too young to be home alone, then the judge may not require you to obtain full-time employment. The wellbeing of the children is likely going to be a priority, as the judge wants to create an environment in which the children can grow and thrive.
How Long You Were Married
If you were married for only a couple of months, you may not be eligible to receive alimony. In the eyes of the court, this may not be a long enough time to truly become financially dependent on the other. A spouse who was married for several years may receive alimony for half the duration of the marriage. If you were married for ten years or longer, then alimony may be imposed permanently.
Whether You Had Sacrificed For the Other’s Success
The spouse who didn’t work may have taken care of the family home and children as a way to enable the other spouse to achieve their career success. The court may view this as the spouse having sacrificed for the other, and that he or she deserves to be repaid through alimony until they can support themselves independently.