Finding The Way Forward For You

Finding The Way Forward For You

How Is Alimony and Spousal Support Determined?

As it becomes increasingly common for both spouses in a marriage to maintain their own careers, alimony is less frequently an issue in Tennessee divorce cases. However, if you are seeking a divorce after a lengthy marriage, or if you or your spouse forewent a career to raise your children or maintain the family home, alimony may be an issue for you. If this is the case, it is crucial that you fully understand your rights before beginning any type of divorce negotiation. Determining alimony can be very subjective, so it takes an attorney with experience and instincts to evaluate your position thoroughly.

At the Kennedy Law Firm, PLLC, our lawyers boast more than 75 years of combined legal experience in divorce negotiation and litigation. The skills and insight we have obtained over these years allow us to provide clients with informed legal advice backed by our reputation throughout the Clarksville area during the negotiation process.

Types of alimony and maintenance

Alimony or spousal maintenance in Clarksville is most often temporary. It may be awarded while the divorce is taking place and for a limited time thereafter to allow the economically disadvantaged spouse to maintain a reasonable standard of living until reentering the workforce. Clarksville courts may also award alimony as compensation if the nature of marital assets makes an uneven distribution unavoidable. Permanent alimony is available, although it is awarded only under very limited circumstances. Ongoing alimony obligations can be modified, usually when the obligor suffers a significant drop in income or the obligee enjoys a substantial increase in income or reduction in financial needs.

How courts determine alimony and maintenance

Unlike child support, alimony determinations in Tennessee are very subjective. There is no set formula for calculating alimony or maintenance. Instead, a court must consider a number of factors in making an award fair under the circumstances:

  • The length of the marriage
  • Each spouse’s earning capacity
  • Each spouse’s age and health
  • The allocation of child custody
  • The allocation of marital property
  • Each spouse’s separate assets
  • Each spouse’s contribution to the marriage
  • Which spouse was at fault for the divorce

Because Tennessee courts have so much discretion in this area, having an experienced advocate on your side is crucial whether you are seeking alimony or are a potential obligor. Having represented clients in the Clarksville area for more than 18 years, our attorneys at the Kennedy Law Firm, PLLC have seen firsthand how these cases play out. This knowledge informs our negotiations and strongly influences if we advise our clients to litigate the issue.

Contact our firm today if you are considering divorce

For better or worse, an alimony award can affect your life for years to come. If you are considering filing for divorce in Tennessee, our attorneys at the Kennedy Law Firm, PLLC can advise you of your legal position and help you negotiate or litigate a fair and beneficial resolution. Call us today at 931-444-5620 or contact us online to schedule a no-cost initial consultation with one of our Clarksville attorneys.