Waldorf, MD Alimony Attorney

Baltimore Crimianl Defense Lawyers

Divorce proceedings can get dicey for many different reasons. Emotions and tensions are high on both sides, and both soon-to-be-ex spouses may feel very strongly about putting this chapter of their lives behind them and having nothing to do with their former partner. Alimony, or payment by one spouse to the other, is often a hotly contested issue in divorce proceedings. Many different factors go into alimony determinations, and the differing circumstances of each divorce proceeding can make it hard to know definitively what is going to happen.

If you have alimony concerns in Waldorf, we can help. Alimony can be tough to understand, but our attorneys have the skills, knowledge, and experience to work with you through the process and get you the best outcome possible for your case.

For a totally free and confidential review of your case, call Rice, Murtha & Psoras’s office at (410) 694-7291 and speak with our alimony attorneys today.

Alimony in Waldorf, MD Explained

Alimony is court-mandated payments from one spouse to the other on a set schedule. Usually, alimony is meant to ensure that one spouse is able to sustain themselves after a divorce until they are financially self-sufficient. Most of the time, alimony payments have an expiration date, although there are some circumstances that may warrant indefinite alimony payments. Ultimately, it is best to have our alimony lawyers look at your situation to advise you on what is likely and unlikely to happen.

Types of Alimony in Waldorf, MD

Since every divorce proceeding is different, there are also different versions of alimony payments the court can choose from to fit the needs of each divorce proceeding. The laws regarding alimony generally are found under Md. Code, Family Law Art. § 11-106. This statute deals with factors affecting how the court determines the structure of alimony payments, and they include things like a spouse’s ability to be self-supporting, the expected duration of payments, the length of the marriage, and many other considerations. In examining those things, the court can compel alimony payments in a way that both benefits and does not burden divorcing spouses.

Alimony “Pendente Lite”

Sometimes, alimony payments need to begin before divorce proceedings are over. This could be because one spouse intends to stop helping the other before a divorce is finalized, and the other spouse cannot support themselves. For example, suppose one spouse kicks the other out of their home, and the kicked-out spouse cannot afford somewhere to live. Alternatively, one spouse may not have the financial means to afford legal counsel without help from the other spouse. In those types of situations, a court may find that the right move is to begin alimony payments before divorce proceedings come to a conclusion. Alimony pendent lite is covered in Md. Code, Family Law Art. § 11-102.

Rehabilitative Alimony Payments

One of the more common reasons alimony is awarded is to enable the spouse receiving payments to become self-sufficient and not need them anymore. This is called “rehabilitative alimony.” A common reason for this type of alimony is when the receiving spouse is switching careers or pursuing some other opportunity that requires an apprenticeship, internship, or similar job training period where they will not be earning a lot of income. Alternatively, the spouse could be awaiting approval for a disability program of some sort and will need financial support until that approval goes through.

Indefinite Alimony Payments

In some circumstances, alimony payments will not terminate at a predetermined date. This is called “indefinite alimony,” and the rules governing it fall under Md. Code, Family Law Art. § 11-106(c). Indefinite alimony, as the name suggests, does not expire. Courts generally only award this type of alimony either when a spouse is not expected to become self-sufficient at any point in the future or when the difference in living standards between the spouses would be “unconscionably disparate.” While there is no set end date, courts can end indefinite alimony payments if circumstances change, so it is a good idea to discuss your situation with our lawyers if you feel that is the case.

Factors the Court Considers for Alimony Awards in Waldorf, MD

There is not a set template for how alimony awards play out in court. Instead, judges consider the unique factors and circumstances affecting each case and weigh certain factors against each other in making alimony determinations. Some of the factors that may influence alimony decisions in your case include:

Living Standards

If a spouse has become accustomed to certain living standards during the marriage, the court can compel alimony payments to maintain that living standard.

Spouse Finances

Courts also must consider the finances of the spouse who will be paying it. After all, an alimony payment is of no use if it is beyond the means of the spouse being compelled to pay it. Therefore, courts will try to avoid awarding payments that are impossible to make on the part of the paying spouse.

Duration of Marriage

The length of the divorcing spouses’ marriage can also come into play when determining alimony awards. The duration of a marriage can contribute to things like expected lifestyle, the age of the spouses, and other considerations. Generally, longer marriages are more likely to have alimony awarded, but this is not always the case.

Spousal Agreements

Any prior agreements the divorcing spouses have made, such as prenuptial agreements, can also factor into a court’s decision to award alimony and how much that alimony award will be.

Chat with Our Waldorf, MD Alimony Attorneys Today

Get a free review of your situation from our alimony attorneys when you reach out to Rice, Murtha & Psoras by dialing (410) 694-7291.