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Will I Be Required to Pay Alimony After My Michigan Divorce?

 Posted on November 07, 2019 in Divorce

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:

  • The length of the marriage

  • The standard of living that was established during the marriage

  • Each spouse’s contributions to the marital estate

  • Each spouse’s age, health, and earning capacity

  • How much of the marital estate is being awarded to each spouse during property division

  • The ability of the obligated spouse to pay spousal support

Duration of Spousal Support Payments

In some states, the amount of alimony a payor spouse is required to pay the recipient spouse is determined by a fixed formula. However, in Michigan, a judge typically has discretion when deciding the amount each spousal support payment will be and how long these payments will last. If a spouse wishes to modify spousal support after the final divorce decree is entered, he or she will need to petition the court for a modification. If the court finds that spousal support is no longer appropriate, the payments may be terminated.  

Contact an Oakland County Spousal Maintenance Lawyer

A divorce involves many issues that will need to be resolved before it can be finalized. In Michigan, spousal support decisions are made on a case-by-case basis with consideration to each spouse’s financial needs and life circumstances. Whether you are the paying spouse or the spouse receiving spousal support, an experienced attorney can be a valuable source of guidance and advocacy during alimony disputes. To schedule a free consultation with a skilled Novi, MI divorce attorney from Elkouri Heath, PLC, call our office at 248-344-9700 today.



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