Alimony, or spousal support, is not a part of every divorce, but can be requested by either the husband or the wife under Ohio state law. Alimony is a separate issue from property division and child support, and may be issued on a temporary or permanent basis, depending on the court’s decision. Spousal support is most often issued when one spouse was the primary income earner during a marriage. This type of support is not considered punitive, rather reasonable and appropriate to help pay expenses such as mortgages, food, clothing, and medical needs after the marriage ends. In addition, in appropriate cases spousal support will be Ordered to enable both spouses to maintain their pre-divorce lifestyle and standard of living to the extent possible.
Cincinnati alimony spousal support lawyer John Heilbrun has extensive experience on both sides of the spousal support issues. He is prepared to help determine if you may expect to receive alimony or to protect you against unfair rulings.
Spousal support is determined by the court only after property division issues have been determined. Once the division of marital property and debts have been determined, the Court will consider alimony based on factors such as:
- The length of the marriage
- The age and health of both parties
- The standard of living established during the marriage
- The education level of both parties
- The income and earning capacity of both parties
Other factors may include contributions the receiving party made towards the education or career advancement of the pauing spouse, work limitations based on child custody or parenting agreements, and the viability of the receiving party to seek additional education in order to join the workforce.
The term of the spousal support obligation may be a specified period of time or it may be indefinite.
Modifying or Terminating Alimony
If you want to be able to modify alimony to reflect changing circumstances for you or your spouse, that needs to be written into the agreement or Ordered by the Court. If your decree does include authorization for the court to change or terminate spousal support, typical circumstances include:
- A substantial involuntary reduction in the income of the paying spouse
- A substantial involuntary decrease in the income of the receiving spouse
- The remarriage or cohabitation of the receiving spouse
- The disability of the paying spouse
- The death of either spouse
Read more about How Earning Ability Can Affect Alimony
Cincinnati alimony attorney John Heilbrun can help you under these circumstances to ensure you do not continue paying spousal support when it is no longer necessary, or to assist you in opposing a request by your former spouse to decrease or eliminate their spousal support obligations.