Spousal Support: Designated Dollars after Divorce
When it comes to spousal support, neither divorcing person wants to be the one left responsible for paying any amount to the other. Unfortunately, the court can and does award spousal support in a divorce proceeding that often dictates that one spouse will be required to make pre-determined monetary payments to their ex for a set period of time. The purpose of awarding spousal support is often to create more equality between two people whose incomes may have been vastly different during the marriage. However, as logical as this seems, it’s often of very little consolation to the person forced to write a check every month to their ex-spouse.
“Spousal support is a very touchy subject for all parties involved in a divorce because both people want to get it from the other, but neither want to be legally forced to give it to the other person,” said Norman Green, Senior Partner at Green & Metcalf of Vero Beach, FL.
In the past, spousal support was regarded as payments to ex-wives whose husbands provided for the couple (and any children) throughout the marriage. Since these wives did not typically work, regular spousal support was seen as a way for them to continue their lifestyle after divorce, as they re-established themselves in society. However, with today’s couples, it’s common that they both work, which can lead to a situation where a higher-earning wife is required to make payments to her lower-earning husband instead or a similar instance with same-sex partners.
“Many factors determine if spousal support is warranted in a divorce, and if so, how much will be paid and for how long. Because the court has such discretion, we try to do as much as we can so our clients are as informed as they can be about all possible outcomes,” Green said.
Norman A. Green is the founder and a partner of Green & Metcalf - Attorneys At Law. He has over 40 years of experience in the practice fields of criminal defense and family law (divorce, child custody, child support, paternity, modifications of existing orders, prenuptial agreements and alimony cases).