In Georgia, a lesser earning spouse may have a legitimate alimony claim where there is a disparity between incomes.
The system of alimony is intended to avert serious financial hardship to the lesser-earning spouse. If, for example, you were dependent on your husband or wife’s considerably higher income, divorce can raise the frightening prospect of destitution.
The lesser-earning spouse may be able to claim alimony as part of divorce proceedings via a court order or as part of the final divorce decree.
Alimony is intended to ensure one party to the divorce is not left in an unfair financial position. However, the mere existence of a disparity of incomes does not mean alimony will be granted to the lesser earning spouse by right.
Alimony is intended to shield a spouse who will be affected most severely by the divorce from the negative financial impact, but a number of factors impact alimony.
Factors That Can Impact an Alimony Claim in Georgia
- The duration of a marriage;
- The standard of living maintained by a spouse during a marriage;
- A spouse’s physical ability to work ;
- A spouse’s ability to pay at the same time as providing for his or her own household;
- The contributions of each spouse to the marriage, including homemaking, child care, building a career for the other spouse and education;
- The spouse’s physical and emotional condition and age.
If alimony is awarded in a divorce, it terminates on the remarriage of the recipient.
Although there is no guarantee you will be given alimony, also known as spousal support, it is certainly worth making a case if you are likely to be unfairly disadvantaged financially by the end of a marriage.
If you are contemplating divorce, you should seek a wide-ranging evaluation of your case. Often spouses may fail to realize they may be awarded alimony and assume they will be financially worse off post-divorce.
You should never agree to a settlement before discussing your options and your rights. A Georgia family lawyer can examine what you are entitled to and advise you whether you have a case to claim alimony.
Call the Law Office of Michael West at (404) 913-1529 for a consultation.