Spousal Support (Alimony)
When you go through a divorce, one of your biggest concerns will be alimony or spousal support. Alimony is an amount of money awarded by the court to be paid by one spouse to the spouse who is economically disadvantaged in the marriage. Tennessee law goes out of its way to recognize the contribution of both spouses to the marriage. This means that both financial contributions and contributions to the care of children and the home will be recognized by the courts.
Tennessee law recognizes four types of alimony: in futuro; in solido; rehabilitative, transitional. Judges can award the party receiving alimony more than one type. Parties can also negotiate the types of alimony that will be paid in their case.
The Four Types of Alimony
Let’s say your case doesn’t fall neatly into just one of these categories. In this case the court might award more than one type of alimony that fits your specific case’s facts better than one type alone. When judges have to decide what type and how much alimony to award, they must evaluate a list of factors specifically laid out in Tennessee statutes. Our Nashville Lawyers understand the factors cover a wide range of characteristics in each marriage and include:
- The “earning capacity” or ability to make money, financial obligations, needs, and financial resources of each spouse;
- The education and job training each spouse has;
- Length (in years) of the marriage;
- Age and mental condition of each spouse;
- Physical condition of each spouse;
- Extent to which is it feasible and reasonable for each party to work outside the home (generally a factor to be weighed when the parties have children);
- The separate assets each spouse has;
- The division of marital assets;
- The standard of living the parties enjoyed during the marriage;
- Contributions, both monetary and intangible, made by each spouse to the marriage and contributions made by one spouse that contributed to the education or increased earning power of the other party;
- Fault of each spouse;
- Tax consequences to each spouse and other factors the court finds necessary.
Alimony can be modified or terminated if you or your ex-spouse has undergone a substantial change in circumstances since the court entered an order for alimony. Life events such as re-marriage, moving in with someone, the loss of income, and disability can all be grounds for alimony modification or termination. If you are experiencing any of these changes after an alimony order has been issued in your case, you should reach out to our Nashville divorce attorney for an evaluation of your case.
Our office’s dedicated divorce attorney can guide you through issues related to alimony and other challenges you will encounter going through a divorce. If you are in the process of getting a divorce or are considering a divorce contact our office by phone at (615) 475-7041, email a request for consultation to email@example.com, or fill out our “Contact Us” form.