Spousal support is commonly referred to as alimony. This is the payment that the court orders one spouse to pay to the other. There are several ways for this payment to be settled, such as installments, a lump sum, or yearly payments. Alimony is not the same as child support, as even if the couple does not have a child together, one party will still have to pay spousal support.
The purpose of the ongoing spousal maintenance payments, or spousal support, is to ensure that one party does not have to risk putting their lives on pause or becoming bankrupt due to a divorce.
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Ensuring You Get the Financial Support You Deserve
During the marriage, if one spouse is responsible for the financial well-being of their partner, the court may order that party to pay spousal maintenance payments to the other. This payment was created so that the one party is not left in a state of financial crisis following a divorce, which is a very common issue. Attorney Buckley is an experienced family lawyer that can help you to get everything you deserve after a divorce, including spousal support. If you require a consultation about spousal support in Flint, MI, I am here to help you with all of your needs.
What Factors Are Considered In Determining Spousal Support In Michigan?
There are several factors that go into determining the amount of alimony that has to be paid and who has to pay it. Typically, the party that has a higher annual income and net worth will have to be responsible for the other. Unlike in other states, Michigan courts do not follow an alimony calculator, which means that the court will demand that the party pays the alimony until all of the qualifications are met.
Listed below are some of the factors that will be considered when deciding the amount and duration of the alimony payment:
- The past relations and conduct of the parties
- The length of the marriage
- The ability of the parties to be a part of the workforce
- The source of an amount of property awarded to the parties
- The age of the parties
- The ability of the parties to pay alimony
- The present financial situation of the parties
- The financial needs of the parties
- The health of the parties
- The standard of living of the parties prior to and following the divorce
- The general principles of equity
When spouses agree to a divorce settlement, the agreement may list circumstances that would cause spousal support to end, including If the disadvantaged spouse agrees to stop receiving the alimony. When circumstances change, there is a chance that the spousal maintenance payments will end. For example, if the supported party gets remarried or if the paying spouse dies, then the alimony payments will stop. Additionally, in some other cases such as if the receiving party has significantly increased their income level, the court may decide that they do not need the support anymore. If the receiving party is found to be engaging in fraudulence or duress, the paying party has the right to halt the support and file for a lawsuit against their ex-spouse.
What if a Spouse Fails to Pay Spousal Support?
If the paying party fails to pay the alimony, the receiving party may file a motion where the paying party will be forced to explain themselves as to why they failed to make a payment. If the reason does not justify the halting of the payment, the court may charge the paying party with contempt of court, which means that they will have to pay an additional fine as well.
We understand that spousal support can be difficult and the paying party may not find it fair. At times, it may not be. If you suspect foul play on the part of your ex-spouse, please contact us at Kathleen Buckley, P.C. I am an experienced attorney willing to help with all of your spousal support needs. Call our Flint, MI law office today at 810-242-0407 for a consultation.