Spousal support is sometimes awarded in divorce cases (not paternity or custody matters involving unmarried parents) to help a spouse meet their financial needs. There are three kinds of spousal support.
Spousal support is not awarded in all divorces. When it is, it can be one of the types above, or a combination of two or more. For example, you may get both transitional support to assist you in re-entering the work force and longer term maintenance support. When determining the type and amount, the courts consider the length of a marriage, incomes of the parties, division of assets, child care responsibilities and more.
Spousal support can have a significant financial impact for both parties and like most aspects of a divorce, is negotiated with a spouse. If the parties are unable to reach an agreement, a hearing or trial might ultimately be necessary. How your case is presented will greatly influence the outcome. In most spousal support cases it is in your best interest to be represented by an experienced divorce attorney.
Spousal support may be modified or terminated if there is a substantial change in the financial circumstances of either party. Events such as job loss or change, remarriage or a significant health change may warrant a modification in a spousal support obligation. For more information on, see Judgement Modifications.