Understanding Alimony & Determining Spousal Support in PA
If you are getting a divorce, you may have questions about alimony and spousal support in Pennsylvania – which can be a difficult concept to understand and figure out in your own life. Many people who are getting a divorce have to worry about so many different facets of their lives – will they be able to afford their bills? Can they keep their homes? Will they be able to afford health insurance? Will they be able to dip into their retirement funds? Can they afford to provide for their children? All of these fears are rational and valid- and almost all of them trace back to one big thing: money.
Money is a key part of our lives, whether or not that is for the best. After a divorce, spousal support and alimony can help people to get their lives back on track and make their way into the future. Even so, it is one of the most stressful, emotional, and difficult things to resolve during a divorce. Sometimes, it can get contentious and people are afraid to go after what they deserve. With the help of a lawyer, it isn’t impossible to get what you deserve and rebuild – and you deserve to do just that.
Differences Between Alimony & Spousal Support In PA
It is important to understand that there is a difference between alimony and spousal support in Pennsylvania. They should not be used interchangeably. Spousal support is temporary financial support paid from one spouse to another throughout the process of their divorce. Alimony is the financial support paid once the marriage ends and the terms of the divorce have been finalized. It is important to use the correct terms when talking about what you need.
Why Does Alimony Exist?
People who have to pay alimony often question why alimony exists in Pennsylvania. Alimony is based on need – if someone was dependent on the other person to live a good life, they qualify to receive alimony. It is not based on gender – it is based on need. Alimony helps to provide for that person, especially if he or she needs to leave the home and stay in a hotel or apartment. The amount of alimony helps to balance the lifestyle of both parties until the financial details can be sorted. If someone gets alimony during a divorce, that does not mean they will get spousal support after the divorce. Similarly, if someone doesn’t get alimony during a divorce, that doesn’t mean they won’t qualify for spousal support.
Usually, alimony is necessary when one person earns more money than the other. This could be when someone decided not to work to raise the children or one was able to get a better job while the other didn’t. The goal is to get the partner receiving alimony to a point where he or she can be self-sufficient.
Challenges Of Determining Alimony
If you are going through the process of determining alimony payments in Pennsylvania, you should know that it is not a simple process. There are many things that need to be uncovered and the law can be way too vague in some instances. If you are looking to get alimony or spousal support, a lawyer can help you to get the information to prove what you need. If you are expected to pay alimony, a good lawyer will ensure that it is necessary.
At our family law firm in the Philadelphia area, we exclusively provide comprehensive legal services for divorcing couples and those seeking alimony. We have over 35 years of experience handling contested and uncontested divorces, situations involving children, and alimony payment. We can put our experience and focused representation to work for you.
To schedule a consultation with an experienced Philadelphia alimony attorney, contact the Law Office of Smith & Horwitz by calling 215-545-2880.