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Farmington Hills alimony attorney

When a couple divorces, one spouse may be at a significant financial disadvantage. For example, if a stay-at-home parent has not worked outside of the home in many years, he or she may have difficulty acquiring employment and becoming financially independent after the split. In some divorce cases, the higher-earning spouse is obligated to make payments to the lesser-earning spouse for a period of time. These payments are commonly referred to as alimony, spousal support, or spousal maintenance. Although wives have traditionally been the recipients of spousal support, both men and women may be entitled to this kind of monetary support depending on the circumstances.

Michigan Spousal Support

If you are considering divorce, you may be wondering whether you will be ordered to pay spousal maintenance. The answer depends on a number of factors. If you and your spouse had previously signed a valid prenuptial agreement that dictates your spousal support obligations, you will be expected to comply with the terms of that agreement. Michigan courts make decisions regarding alimony on a case-by-case basis. When determining whether spousal support is appropriate, the court will consider aspects such as:

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Novi MI alimony lawyer“Manimony” is a play on the term alimony that describes the court-ordered amount a divorced woman pays to her ex-husband each month. If a woman makes significantly more money than her husband, she may be subject to paying him alimony post-divorce. According to the 2010 census, 3 percent of alimony recipients were men but that number has risen. 

How Alimony is Determined

There are many factors that will determine if alimony will be awarded, in what amounts, and under what duration. Two key factors are the length of the marriage and the difference between spouses’ incomes. The larger the income differential is and a longer length of your relationship can result in a higher alimony award. 

Other factors include: the past relations and conduct of the spouses, the abilities of the spouses to work, the source and amount of property awarded to the spouses in the property settlement of the divorce, the parties’ ages and health, a spouse’s fault in causing the divorce, and overall fairness.

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MI divorce lawyerUnlike child support, spousal support is not as rigidly defined in the Michigan divorce codes. In Michigan, there is a formula that tells you whether or not you will receive child support and how much that child support amount will be. With spousal support, it is determined on a case-by-case basis if you are awarded it, how much it will be and for how long you will get the payments. Spousal support is sometimes a necessity in a divorce, especially if one spouse does not make as much as the other or was a stay-at-home parent. Spousal support can provide that spouse with a much-needed supplement to his or her income.

Am I Guaranteed Spousal Support?

In a Michigan divorce, spousal support is not guaranteed to be awarded to either spouse. You and your spouse do have the chance to decide on spousal support in your settlement. You have the option to negotiate with your spouse if you will receive spousal support and how much that support will be. If you and your spouse cannot come to an agreement, the judge will intervene and make the decisions for you.

Factors for Consideration

If the judge has to step in to make the final say about any spousal support decisions that must be made, he or she will look at a variety of factors surrounding you and your spouse’s situation. These factors can include:

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