What is considered when making a determination of alimony?

UPDATED: Aug 20, 2011

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What is considered when making a determination of alimony?

I have been married for almost 12 years. Last year my husband had an affair at work and was fired later in the year. He has been collecting unemployment since. This year has been the only year he has not been employed during our marriage. We are currently separated and I am seeking a divorce. He says he will be asking for alimony. We have 3 vehicles, 1 with payments that I will keep and 2 are paid off and a plow he will be keeping. The house is barely worth what we owe if even. The income I make is what he used to make. Is there any chance he will be awarded any monthly alimony?

Asked on August 20, 2011 Minnesota


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

The decision to award alimony or spousal maintenance is one that Court will determine.   Two factors that they will look at are  whether your husband can reasonably support himself and whether you have the ability to pay maintenance.  If they do decide that he gets it then they can look at the following list of factors, of which is not exhaustive:

  • His financial resources and his ability to meet his personal needs independently.
  • Standard of living established during the marriage.
  • The time and effort necessary to secure sufficient education or training to enable him to find meaningful employment and the probability, given the spouse’s age and skills, of completing education and training and becoming fully self-supporting.
  • Loss of pay, reasonable expectation for advancement and additional employment opportunities.
  • His age and physical and emotional condition.
  • Your ability of the spouse meet your needs while paying maintenance.
  • The length of the marriage as well as the length of absence from employment.
  • Each spouse’s contribution to the amount or value of martial property, as well as the somewhat intangible contribution of the spouse who was the homemaker.
  • The court will not consider marital misconduct in making a maintenance award.
  • Get legal help.  Good luck.

    IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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