If you are considering a divorce, alimony (also known as spousal support in Tennessee) is probably one of the most important factors that will be determined in the divorce process. Like many others who are facing divorce for the first time, you will likely have concerns regarding alimony (or spousal support).
Alimony provides financial assistance from one spouse to the other based on financial need and the payer’s ability to pay. The amount of spousal support and duration varies depending on the type of support awarded. In Tennessee, alimony is not awarded in all divorce cases.
The court will consider the following factors:
See T.C.A. § 36-5-121
These factors will help the court determine what type of alimony to award, including financial support to help one spouse transition to life after divorce or alimony for a spouse who cannot become self-sufficient due to illness, age, or other factors.
If the court decides to order spousal support, there are four different types of alimony the court can chose from:
Many times in divorce cases, there is a preference for rehabilitative or transitional alimony over alimony in solido or alimony in futuro. The intent of this preference is to help an economically disadvantaged spouse achieve self-sufficiency, if at all possible. A court will order alimony in futuro only when it finds that the disadvantaged spouse will be unable to improve his/her financial position with the aid of short-term alimony.
When determining spousal support in a divorce case, each spouse must provide a full financial disclosure. It is important to maintain proper financial documentation to provide to your Murfreesboro divorce attorney. If you believe your spouse is hiding assets, it is important to notify your divorce lawyer so steps can be taken to discover the hidden assets.
While a divorce case is pending, a court may order temporary spousal support, which will end when the final judgment for divorce is granted. The amount of alimony temporarily granted is based on the court’s discretion, not an exact formula. The current financial situations and present needs of the disadvantaged spouse, in addition to the couple’s standard of living at the time of separation, will be considered.
Some forms of alimony may be modified. A change in financial circumstances of either spouse may require a modification to a current alimony court order, which could result in an upward or downward modification of support.
Like other aspects of a divorce, determining a fair and equitable alimony amount is complicated. David Clarke has represented clients who receive alimony payments and those who have to pay alimony. He will review your specific situation to determine if alimony is needed in your divorce case and, if so, what type will realistically deal with your needs and the needs of your former spouse.
To discuss your specific case, please call (615) 796-6299.