Divorce can take a tremendous toll on individuals when it comes to their lifestyle and financial stability. Under these circumstances, any financial support you receive can significantly impact your life. Whether this includes spousal support will depend your answers to some important questions.
What was your marriage like?
The details of your marriage will affect whether you can be eligible for spousal support. To determine eligibility, the courts will assess:
- How long you were married or lived together
- What roles you and your spouse played during your marriage
- Your marital standard of living
These factors can say a lot about whether it is appropriate for your soon-to-be-ex-spouse to support you after the marriage ends.
Do you need support?
You must also show that you have a need for support, which is not the same as feeling like you deserve it. You can show this need by establishing that:
- Your marriage or its breakdown triggered economic disadvantages
- You cannot maintain the high standard of living you enjoyed during your marriage
- You gave up your career to take care of your kids or home, interrupting your economic self-sustainability
- You supported your spouse’s professional or educational aspirations, contributing to their financial advantages
When these situations exist, the courts can decide to award compensatory or non-compensatory spousal support to account for them.
Did you and your spouse sign a contract?
One of the easiest ways to determine if you will receive support is to review any marital contract you might have. If valid, your agreement might lay out the circumstances under which you will or will not collect support. It might already detail how you calculate the amount of support.
Every case is different
While this information can give you a good idea of whether you have a reasonable chance of collecting support, it is crucial to understand that every case is different. Further, spousal support matters can be far more complicated than people realize, leading to conflicts over eligibility for and duration of support.
As such, seeking legal guidance if you wish to pursue spousal support can be essential. Legal representation can help you navigate the court system and understand the relevant guidelines and laws in place.