Will I be paying or receiving maintenance and how is the amount determined?
It often depends on the discrepancies in income between husband and wife. Initially, judges will often formulate a Temporary Order before permanent spousal support can be decided. As far as the Permanent Order goes, the judge will take a number of things into account, including: how long you were married, what the standard of living was during the marriage, and the financial state of both parties—including income potential. For instance, if a wife has spent the majority of her 15-year marriage outside of the workforce, managing the home, her income (not to mention income potential were she to seek a job) is likely far below her husband’s.
The actual law states:
The maintenance order shall be in such amounts and for such periods of time as the court deems just, without regard to marital misconduct, and after considering all relevant factors including:
- The financial resources of the party seeking maintenance, including marital property apportioned to him, and his ability to meet his needs independently, including the extent to which a provision for support of a child living with the party includes a sum for that party as custodian;
- The time necessary to acquire sufficient education or training to enable the party seeking maintenance to find appropriate employment and that party’s future earning capacity;
- The standard of living established during the marriage;
- The duration of the marriage;
- The age and the physical and emotional condition of the spouse seeking maintenance; and
- The ability of the spouse from whom maintenance is sought to meet his needs while meeting those of the spouse seeking maintenance.
The Court will keep this in mind when determining how much maintenance will be compulsory, and your attorney will represent your interests in persuading the Court as to what is fair for you. Find out more about our Divorce Lawyer.