Whether you are male or female, if you have been married for a significant period of time and are now divorced, you may have to pay alimony to your former spouse. Here is a brief description of how alimony works in Tahlequah, Oklahoma.
What is Alimony in Tahlequah, Oklahoma?
Alimony, also called “spousal support,” is financial support paid by one spouse to another after divorce. It is usually ordered to be paid in monthly installments, but it may also be ordered in the form of a one lump sum payment. The terms of alimony payments may be agreed upon by you and your spouse or you can leave it up to the court to decide.
Alimony is not a legal right, but a remedy for the financial disparity that may exist between spouses after they divorce. The amount and duration of alimony is usually determined by the court and is based on a number of factors, including how long you were married, the age of each spouse, your individual incomes, and a spouse’s ability to find a job and be self-sufficient.
In Oklahoma, there are two kinds of spousal support available:
- Spousal maintenance: financial support ordered by the court to be paid by one spouse to the other while the divorce proceedings are taking place. This means from the time you file for divorce until the final divorce decree is issued.
- Alimony: financial support awarded in the final divorce decree and that is to be paid by one spouse to the other, in money or property, after the divorce and for a specified length of time.
How Alimony is Determined in Tahlequah, Oklahoma
In deciding the amount and duration of alimony payments, Tahlequah courts consider a number of different factors, most importantly the length of the marriage and the ability of the spouses to support themselves.
The duration of alimony in Tahlequah will be determined based on the amount of time it will take for the receiving spouse to become self-supporting and on what the court considers to be fair and reasonable under the circumstance.
Short-term alimony may be awarded to give the receiving spouse time to prepare financially for the separation. On the other hand, the court may award long-term or even lifelong alimony to be paid if the needs of the receiving spouse dictate such.
Modifying Alimony in Tahlequah, Oklahoma
Once ordered, alimony in Tahlequah will typically not be terminated unless the receiving party remarries or one of the spouses dies. Either party, however, can request that alimony be modified if it can be shown that certain material circumstances call for an adjustment in the terms.
An increase or decrease in income or living expenses can be grounds for a modification. Alimony may also be modified if the receiving spouse is found to be cohabiting with a member of the opposite sex.
Alimony is a remedy available to address the financial disparity between spouses after they have divorced. You and your spouse can decide upon the terms of any alimony to be paid or allow the courts to do it for you. An experienced Tahlequah family law attorney can help you and your spouse negotiate the terms of your alimony and estimate the amount and duration of alimony that may be awarded by the courts in your particular divorce.
Free Consultation: Tahlequah Divorce Attorney
For a free consultation, call Wirth Law Office – Tahlequah at 918-458-2677 or toll free at 1-888-447-7262.
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