Am I Eligible for Spousal Support?
It depends on the duration of your marriage, you and your ex-partner’s financial situations, and some other factors, which we’ll discuss below.Eligibility for Spousal Maintenance in Arizona
When couples can agree on alimony or spousal maintenance during an Arizona divorce, the court will usually uphold these agreements.
If, however, spousal support is a point of dispute in the divorce (either because the parties disagree that maintenance should be paid or because they are disputing the amount of these maintenance payments), then the court will typically consider the following factors in determining eligibility for spousal maintenance in Arizona:
- Whether the individual requesting support payments (i.e., the requester) is in financial need and whether that individual is able to become self-sufficient by getting a job
- The age and physical condition of the requester
- Whether the requester contributed to his or her partner’s professional education and/or career advancement.
If the court determines that the requester is eligible to receive spousal maintenance following the divorce, it will generally, then, consider at least the following factors in determining how much these support payments should be going forward:
- The length of the marriage
- The standard of living established during the course of the marriage
- The financial contributions each party has made to the household/marriage
- The financial resources each party has (including the payer’s ability to make support payments).
- Spousal maintenance & prenups – When a couple has a valid prenuptial agreement in place and that prenup contains terms regarding spousal maintenance in the event of divorce, those terms will be upheld.
- Marital misconduct – In general, either partner’s misconduct during the marriage (e.g., infidelity) will not be considered when determining eligibility for (and/or the amount of) spousal maintenance.
- Duration of spousal maintenance – The duration of alimony will depend on the type of spousal support awarded. For instance, while temporary spousal maintenance can end with the final divorce decree (or within months of the divorce being finalized), “permanent” alimony can extend until remarriage or until either partner passes away.
- Modifying spousal maintenance – Although permanent spousal maintenance can last for months or years, it is possible for the payer to get this obligation modified in the future if or when his or her life circumstances (and ability to pay) may change. For instance, grounds for requesting modifications of spousal maintenance in Arizona can include persisting unemployment or the development of a new health complication.
Do you need help resolving spousal support issues in an Arizona divorce case? If so, you can rely on Scottsdale Divorce Attorney Karen Schoenau for honest answers, effective representation and the best possible outcomes to your case. Since 1987, Karen Schoenau has been committed to helping people resolve their important family law matters, including complex cases related to divorce, custody, paternity and other issues.
To receive professional advice and learn more about how we can help you, schedule an initial consultation with Attorney Karen Schoenau. You can set up this meeting by calling 480-209-1918or by emailing us using the drop-down contact form at the top of this page.