Paulding County Spousal Support Lawyer
Cobb County, Douglas County & the Atlanta Metro Area
Spousal support is not automatically awarded to either the wife or the husband in a divorce, but is often available when it is specifically requested by either spouse. It is, however, only available on certain grounds-a spouse's request for alimony will be denied if there is evidence that the divorce is the result of that spouse's adultery or desertion.
In determining whether or not to award spousal support, the judge will weigh the needs of the one spouse versus the ability of the other spouse to pay, with the goal of ensuring that the divorce does not place either party in a position of financial distress and to ease the transition back into single life.How Does the Judge Decide How Much to Award in Support?
There is no set formula for calculating how much an award of alimony should be-instead, state law has laid out a set of guidelines which the judge is directed to follow.
According to Georgia Code § 19-6-5 (2012), these include:
- How long have the parties been married?
- How old is each party, and in what state of health?
- What standard of living has the couple enjoyed during the marriage?
- What financial resources and earning potential does each person have?
- How long will it take for financially-dependent spouses to become self-sufficient?
- What financial contributions and services did each spouse make to the marriage?
Modifying Spousal Support Payments
After a divorce, each spouse may undergo significant changes in their lifestyle, employment, or living situation. Oftentimes, these changes will have an effect on alimony payments—the payments may need to be increased, decreased, or they may no longer be necessary. However, spousal support payments will not adjust on their own.
In order for alimony payments to better reflect these new circumstances, a spouse will need to request modification of the arrangement. Our Paulding County divorce lawyers help our clients determine a fair support agreement that reflects their changed circumstances, and they also help our clients make their case in court.
How Can I Avoid Intervention from the Court?
While the goal of the judge is to issue a ruling which is as fair as possible, this standard is not always met. If you are concerned about protecting your interests on the matter of alimony-whether in securing payment or in avoiding being ordered to pay too much-it is in your best interests to avoid a contested divorce.
A divorce attorney in Paulding County from Henrickson & Sereebutra can assist you with mediation and other strategies for achieving an uncontested divorce, but will be prepared to fight aggressively for you if the matter must be settled in court.
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