Rhode Island Spousal Support Lawyer
Protecting Your Financial Interests
Spousal support, also known as alimony or spousal maintenance, is awarded
in many divorces, particularly if the marriage is longer term. Spousal
support requires one spouse to provide financial support to the other
following divorce. The ultimate goal is to provide the receiving spouse
with enough financial support to maintain the lifestyle established during marriage.
At TJC ESQ, we are very accessible to our clients throughout all of Rhode
Island. No matter where you live, we will be able to meet with you and
discuss the intricacies of your case. We are dedicated to delivering excellence
in legal representation and client care.
To find out more about spousal support,
schedule a consult online or call (401) 216-4414.
Will I Receive or Pay Alimony?
Alimony can be awarded on temporary or permanent basis. Generally, the
courts will assess whether one spouse is in need of financial support
to be financially independent and whether or not the paying spouse has
the financial capacity to provide these payments. The court will consider
a wide range of factors to determine if spousal support is appropriate
in your divorce.
Factors that affect whether alimony is awarded:
The length of a marriage — Marriages of short duration are far less likely to involve alimony
in the divorce orders.
A large wage gap — A wide disparity of income may indicate a need for spousal support.
Earning capacity — The earning capacities of both parties will be considered in any
spousal support award. Does one spouse have a physical disability or other
Property division in divorce — Was the property division (including revenue streams from a business,
for example) sufficient for the support of a spouse?
Actions during the marriage — The conduct of the parties during the marriage may be considered
in determining whether there should be spousal support.
Electronic discovery may be useful in discovering hidden assets or marital infidelity.
Our firm can help you determine what, if any, factors may warrant alimony in
your divorce. If circumstances change after the divorce, a post-decree modification
may be appropriate.
Our firm's lawyers can assess whether the spousal support issues can be reconsidered, and
can represent you in post-divorce litigation.
When is Permanent Alimony Awarded?
In certain situations, a judge may issue a permanent alimony arrangement
that will only terminate if the receiving spouse passes away or remarries.
Permanent alimony is mostly reserved for instances where a couple’s
marriage was exceptionally long or if significant financial inequality
between spouses is present. If it is determined that the receiving spouse
will never be able to acquire the necessary skills or training to become
self-sufficient, a permanent plan may be put in place. Disability can
also warrant indefinite financial support.
What if I Can’t Afford My Alimony Payments?
If you are unable to afford your alimony payments, you may be able to request
a modification to your spousal support arrangement. To begin these proceedings,
either spouse must file a motion with the county court’s clerk’s
office and request that the courts review your alimony order. In order
to have your court order changed, you must be able to show a substantial
change in circumstances from the time your arrangement was first issued.
The following can all be satisfactory reasons for a modification:
- Loss of employment
- Substantial changes in income
- Medical expenses from a sudden illness or injury
In some instances where the receiving spouse has experienced an increase
in income and no longer needs to receive alimony payments to be financially
stable, the courts can terminate alimony payments altogether. It is imperative
to note, however, that verbal agreements between you and your spouse to
alter your payments will not be honored by the courts and must be signed
by a judge to be official. If you are in need of a modification, an attorney
from our firm can advocate on your behalf and maximize your chances of
securing the results you need.
Serving Clients Throughout Rhode Island
We will analyze your situation and discuss how the statutory guidelines
for spousal support will affect you. We can also work with an alimony
calculator to give you an idea of what to expect in your case.
Contact us online to determine how spousal support might be considered in your divorce.