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The Law Offices of James A. Cuddy, LLC

Call To Find Your Way Forward 203-583-8256

Call To Find Your Way Forward 203-583-8256

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What determines the amount and length of spousal support?

On Behalf of | Sep 30, 2023 | Blog, Divorce

Spousal support often plays a role in divorce settlements. Arriving at a fair agreement is mandatory for everyone to remain happy.

The length and amount of payments vary widely, depending on the circumstances. A surprising array of variables factor into what determines these numbers.

Duration of the marriage

In general, longer marriages are more likely to result in higher and longer-lasting spousal support arrangements. Shorter marriages may not include any alimony obligations whatsoever. Legal professionals typically consider marriages lasting less than a decade as being brief.

Income disparities

One of the topmost considerations in spousal support calculations is the earnings difference between soon-to-be-exes. If one party earns significantly more than the other, it is reasonable to assume that monetary support will be necessary to balance the financial scales.

Standard of living

Courts often consider the way of life established during the marriage. When one spouse grows accustomed to a particular lifestyle that would be difficult for that person to afford after divorce, a mediator or judge may insist on awarding enough to help bridge the gap.

Marital misconduct

Misbehavior in one form or another is a common reason for getting a divorce. For example, 60% of divorcing couples cite infidelity as the cause of their split. Should cheating be the primary trigger for breaking up, the straying spouse can count on repercussions for that misdeed. Likewise, if someone gambles excessively, it may negatively impact the pair’s combined finances and thus affect the final determination.

Depending on whether one expects to be the recipient or payee, spousal support can be either a source of comfort or concern. Knowing what issues influence payment specifics helps both parties adjust their spending habits.