Brooklyn, NY – After some divorces, one spouse will want to receive financial support due to large differences in income. While the spouse with less earning capacity can petition the court for these payments, the ultimate decision is made by the judge assigned to the case. There are a number of procedures that must be followed for an order for alimony to be put in place. It is also possible that a judge may only order alimony to be paid temporarily during the divorce or for a short time afterward.
The procedure to file for alimony
A divorce must have already been formally started through the filing of a summons and complaint with the court, and these documents must be served to the defendant spouse. There is a section that is available for requests for relief within the divorce papers that must be completed with the request for alimony. There are also separate income and maintenance guidelines worksheets that must be completed with the requested financial information. This type of documentation helps guide the court in their decision whether to issue alimony payments and the proper amount, so it is crucial for the spouse requesting support to get legal help with these items.
What is the duration of an alimony award?
Like most other states, New York judges are given different types of alimony to choose from based on the couple’s particular situation while they are filing for divorce. Temporary alimony is only awarded from the time the award is issued until the final order of divorce is given to the couple. In practice, this tends to be a few months to a few years depending on the complexity of the divorce case. For a longer duration of payments, the courts are given guidelines based on the length of the marriage. The guidelines suggest that the support period increases along with the amount of time that the marriage lasted, along with other factors such as taxes. This means that a higher earning spouse who was married for several decades is much more likely to have to make alimony payments for several years afterward.
Ending alimony payments
Aside from the specific duration given in the order, there are a few other ways that alimony payments will end. One condition is if one of the spouses dies. Another way that the payments end is if the receiving spouse remarries or starts to live with another person and becomes financially dependent on them.
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