Spousal Support & Alimony
Family law attorneys that practice Collaborative Law will work with the spouses to craft a financial solution for spousal support and alimony. The Collaborative Process is an alternative to litigation and designed to keep you and your spouse out of court. Financial assistance during and after a divorce in the form of spousal support or alimony should be agreed upon with the support of an attorney. Collaborative lawyers can explain the Pennsylvania Support Guidelines and help you and your spouse come to an agreement.
Contact a member of the Collaborative Law Professionals of Southeastern Pennsylvania in Bucks, Montgomery, Delaware, and Chester Counties, Philadelphia, or one of the surrounding areas.
What is Spousal Support?
Spousal support is a form of financial assistance that may be paid by one spouse to the other spouse during the couple’s period of separation and before a court enters a divorce decree. Spousal support in PA is calculated based on a formula found in the statewide Pennsylvania Support Guidelines. There are some defenses that may prevent a spouse from receiving support. These defenses raise issues that are often emotionally charged and accompanied by a lot of adversarial, court proceedings. In the Collaborative Process, spouses, their Collaborative lawyers, financial specialists, and divorce coach(es) work together in a respectful, private setting to fashion a resolution that considers the financial needs of each spouse.
What is Alimony?
Alimony refers to periodic payments that a spouse may receive after the divorce is final. Alimony may be appropriate if a spouse will be unable to support themselves financially after the divorce or will need to pursue education or training to get a job and become financially independent. In Pennsylvania, alimony is a secondary remedy, meaning that it is more likely to be awarded where the division of marital property does not provide sufficient resources to enable the financially dependent spouse to pay for reasonable living expenses after the divorce. There is no formula for calculating the amount or duration of alimony payments in Pennsylvania. The result is that spouses are often “stuck” in an adversarial environment that is time-consuming and costly. There are many factors to consider in alimony discussions.
- Temporary Alimony
- Permanent Alimony
- Length of Marriage
- Balance of hardships
- Tax Consequences
- Age and Health
- Established Standard of Living
- Extent of support that contributed to paying spouse’s success
Don’t Divorce Alone
The Collaborative Law Professionals of Southeastern Pennsylvania are more than lawyers. We are financial specialists, mental health professionals, communication coaches, and child specialists. The collective and diverse knowledge our professionals have allows us to provide individualized advice and assist with complex issues in a healthy manner. Depending upon the spouses’ specific needs and the details of the settlement your Collaborative family lawyer may add additional professionals to your Collaborative team who can help you to reach a mutual agreement.
- Financial Specialists consider various components of a financial settlement such as division of marital property, alimony, and, if applicable, child support.
- Divorce coaches assist in limiting the adversarial environment.
- Child Specialists contribute to discussions involving child support and child custody.
Divorce Advice From a Financial Specialist
- Jeff Metz, MT, CFP explains how using life and disability insurance can protect alimony in the event one of the income streams is interrupted.
- David Anderson,, CPA, CFE, CVA, a collaborative business valuation expert, provides a wealth of information and tells you what you need to know about alimony payments and recent tax changes.