Alimony, commonly referred to as spousal support, is the amount paid by one spouse for the support and maintenance of the other—either continually or in a lump sum—in the event of legal separation or divorce. In general, alimony is a factor in cases where there is a sizeable disparity in income or earning potential between the spouses.
The spouse who earns more money is the one who may be subject to an alimony order, as the dependent spouse will be perceived as not making enough money to pay for expenses and/or carry on with the lifestyle that they were accustomed to during the marriage.
Alimony awards vary widely and are dependent upon the circumstances of your case. If you are interested in learning about the factors considered by courts when determining the appropriateness of alimony requests, call a Raleigh alimony lawyer who can shed some light in this complex area of the law.
The North Carolina alimony law (NC Gen Stat § 50-16.3A) sets forth 16 factors that a court must evaluate before deciding upon the appropriateness of a request for a certain amount and duration. As a Raleigh alimony attorney can explain, these factors include:
If the court determines that the dependent spouse engaged in extramarital relations, as defined in NC Gen Stat § 50-16.1A(3)a., it may not award alimony to that spouse, provided that the conduct was not condoned. Similarly, if the court determines the supporting spouse engaged in extramarital relations, it may award alimony to the dependent spouse, provided, once again, the conduct was not condoned.
If, however, the court finds that both spouses engaged in extramarital relations, it may exercise its discretion regarding the alimony request after considering all the circumstances.
Note that it also may be held against a person for a spouse to attempt to avoid their alimony obligation by intentionally losing a job, accepting a job that pays a good deal less than the amount usually earned, or stashing money in hidden accounts.
Your case is unique, and thus, pinning down the amount of alimony that you may receive or owe is not plausible. However, a knowledgeable alimony lawyer can evaluate the facts of your case and may be able to offer an opinion as to what an award may look like. They can offer you invaluable advice and guidance that can make the process much easier.
An attorney can work with you each step of the way towards the best possible outcome based on your situation. Call today for an informative case review and let a passionate attorney help.