“What about alimony?” As Georgia divorce attorneys, after speaking with a client or potential client concerning the different paths an individual may pursue during their Georgia divorce, the topic of alimony inevitably comes up. Most commonly, we are presented with the following question: “Should I seek alimony?” As with many issue concerning divorce and family law, the answer to this question largely depends on the facts and circumstances of each individual case. However, below are some factors that anyone wondering whether to seek alimony during their Georgia divorce should consider.
Standard of living. What standard of living did you enjoy during the marriage? Will you be able to maintain that standard of living post-divorce without the aid of spousal maintenance? If you feel that is would be difficult or impossible to maintain your current standard of living without alimony, you should consider seeking an award of alimony.
Duration of the marriage. How long were you and your spouse married? If your marriage was relatively short, seeking alimony may not be the best tactic to take during divorce. However, if your marriage lasted several years, seeking alimony may be advisable, especially if you came to depend on the support of your spouse during the marriage.
Physical and emotional condition. Do you suffer from a physical, mental or emotional condition that would make it hard for you to support yourself post-divorce? If so, seeking alimony may be the appropriate alternative to ensure your physical and emotional well being post-divorce.
Financial resources and financial condition. Are your personal or separate financial resources limited as opposed to your spouse’s? Would your spouse have the ability to pay alimony in the event a judge awarded you alimony? Generally, when making alimony determinations, judges often weigh one parties need versus the other party’s ability to pay. You have sufficient need, and your spouse has the ability to pay alimony, you should consider asking for alimony in your Petition for Divorce.
Employment. Are you employed? If not, how long would it take you to obtain the necessary education and training to become employed? Do you have the financial resources necessary to obtain the employment and training necessary to become employable? These questions should be considered in determine whether to seek alimony, because a judge may award rehabilitative alimony to give you the opportunity seek the education necessary to become employed.
Contribution to the marriage. Did you sacrifice your career or earning potential to support your spouse during marriage? If so, you should asking the judge presiding over your divorce to award alimony.