4 Questions About Spousal Support

Posted on: 14 December 2021

One part of the divorce process will be to determine how much spousal support each person gives or receives. This can leave you with a lot of questions about spousal support if you want to know what to expect. 

Are There Limits To How Much Spousal Support Can Be Awarded?

A big question you're likely to have is about how much spousal support you may be ordered to provide. Be aware that every state has their own rules regarding the maximum allowable amount of spousal support. For example, Texas has a cap at either 20% of your average income or $5,000, whichever is the lesser amount. While chances are the spousal support awarded will not be the maximum, it's important to know what it could potentially be.

What Impacts How Much Spousal Support Is Given?

A judge will look at a variety of factors to determine what is the right amount of spousal support. This includes a person's earning potential, education, age, job history, and things of that nature. Some states use spousal support calculators to determine what is a fair amount, which considers multiple factors so that spousal support is predictable. 

When Does Spousal Support End?

There are some reasons that spousal support can end, which includes making a request to a judge down the road when circumstances change. For example, your former spouse may have been promoted or may be earning more money that would justify spousal support to end or be lowered. 

Each state also has their own laws regarding when spousal support will end. This can be based on the total length of your marriage, with a longer marriage resulting in more years of spousal support. Spousal support can also be terminated as a result of a former spouse getting married or cohabiting with another partner. 

It is also possible for spousal support to be indefinite in some situations. This often involves a situation where the former spouse receiving support is disabled and needs more financial support as a result. 

Can You And Your Spouse Agree On Spousal Support?

You can come to an agreement on how much spousal support will be provided. However, that agreement still needs to be approved by a judge. This is to prevent people from agreeing to spousal support that would not be fair, potentially due to pressure from the other person. If this happens, the judge will then request that you come to a new agreement on spousal support or make the decision on your behalf. 

Contact divorce lawyers in your area to learn more.


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