Johns Creek Alimony Lawyer
Alimony, or spousal support as it is commonly called, is a form of financial assistance that some people are required to pay to their former spouses. Determining whether someone qualifies for this assistance can, however, be difficult, so if you have decided to file for divorce and have questions about your alimony-related options, you should speak with an experienced Johns Creek alimony lawyer who can advise you.
Who is Eligible for Spousal Support?
There isn’t a set formula for calculating alimony in Georgia. Instead, judges are tasked with making these decisions based on the application of a variety of factors, including:
- The couple’s standard of living while married;
- The length of the marriage;
- Each spouse’s age, earning potential, and physical health;
- Whether one spouse primarily cared for the couple’s children, but didn’t earn an income;
- The financial needs of both parties;
- Whether one spouse has the ability to pay; and
- Whether one of the parties was at fault for the end of the marriage.
Of these factors, the needs of one spouse and the ability of the other to pay, often prove to play an especially important role in determining alimony in Georgia.
In the event that a couple reaches an alimony agreement, or a judge issues a ruling ordering one party to make payments to the other, the parties or the court will also need to address:
- The amount of payments;
- The form that those payments will take; and
- How long the payments must be made.
Some alimony awards, for instance, are only temporary in nature, as they are intended to help a non-income earning spouse until he or she has obtained employment or vocational training. These payments are typically made on a weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly basis. Long-term support, on the other hand, is usually paid for a longer period of time, often to those who primarily fulfilled a caretaking role in the home.
How long these payments will last depends on the facts of a case and the court issuing the ruling, but these orders are often highly dependent on the length of the marriage. Some courts, for instance, use a standard for calculating alimony in which one year of alimony is paid for every three years of marriage. These payments will, however, automatically cease upon the death of either party, or the remarriage of the supported spouse.
Contempt for Non-Payment
Alimony awards are court orders, so any failure to comply with them could result in contempt of court charges and the eventual garnishment of the non-paying party’s wages. For those who are unable to pay, however, because of a change in circumstances, it is possible to avoid contempt of court proceedings by requesting a modification of their alimony order in court.
Call Our Office Today for Help
If you believe that you may qualify for alimony, or have not yet received a payment from a former spouse, please call Buckhead Family Law at 470-600-6699 to speak with an attorney about your