Spousal support is perhaps better known as alimony. New York courts tend to use the term spousal maintenance. Whatever you call it, it’s a difficult subject and a point of contention in many divorces.
Whichever side of the debate you are on in your divorce or afterward, you need the help of a skilled attorney when the subject of spousal maintenance comes up. Located in Rochester, New York, the Law Offices of Kristine M. Demo-Vazquez, P.C., helps people throughout Monroe County with all issues in divorce and family law. We represent either maintenance payers or recipients, helping ensure that, when necessary, the obligation is fair and sufficient.
Understanding Spousal Maintenance
At the end of a marriage, New York law demands that the spouses must divide their property in a way that is equitable. In practice, this means something more complicated than the common conception of “fairness.”
For example, a 50-50 split of all property might look fair at first glance but not upon closer inspection. If one spouse has a high-paying job while the other decided long ago to forego a career in order to stay home with the children, the homemaker will be at a distinct disadvantage even after the 50-50 split.
In such a case, a family court may order that the party with the lucrative career must pay maintenance to his or her ex. This obligation will typically be for a limited period of time to give the ex a chance to find sufficient income. The exact period of time required and the amount of each payment will be determined according to a list of factors, including the paying party’s income.
Of course, many things can happen in our lives after we sign an agreement, and many people may have to request a modification to an existing agreement when their circumstances change. It is important to speak to a lawyer about the best ways to keep spousal maintenance fair, sufficient and sustainable.