In Connecticut, courts refer to post-dissolution spousal support awards as “alimony.” Either spouse, regardless of gender, may ask the judge to order the other to make alimony payments during divorce proceedings or after the marriage ends. Spousal maintenance might provide you with financial support while job hunting or serve as repayment for contributions to your former spouse’s career.
A knowledgeable family attorney can help you determine if you qualify for alimony and negotiate the terms of a spousal maintenance settlement. If you and your former spouse cannot agree on alimony, a Hartford spousal support lawyer can represent you in court.
If a judge decides that one spouse should receive financial support, the court must then determine the amount of alimony to award, the type of financial support, and the duration of periodic payments. Connecticut General Statute § 46c-82 outlines many factors that can be used to determine the spousal support an individual may need. Common factors the court may consider include:
A qualified attorney can present a strong argument for spousal support based on each party’s financial circumstances.
Alimony can take the form of one lump-sum payment, short-term payments to help a stay-at-home parent transition into the workforce, or long-term support for spouses ending a lengthy marriage. An attorney might also request spousal support pendente lite during dissolution proceedings.
This temporary alimony generally exists to help spouses maintain the marital home, raise minor children, and support themselves during litigation. A local attorney can help the receiving party request the court to continue spousal support following a divorce.
Financial circumstances often change following the entry of a divorce decree. As such, either spouse may petition the court to modify alimony and support judgments under Conn. Gen. Stat. § 46b-86. Former spouses must show substantially changed circumstances necessitating termination or modification of the support order. These often include serious illnesses, job loss, or remarriage.
In some cases, the spouse receiving support begins cohabitating with another person who shares in household financial responsibilities. Judges may terminate alimony in such cases if it appears the primary reasons for the award no longer exist. Working with a lawyer can improve an obligor’s chances of successfully reducing or terminating spousal support.
Many spouses who are entitled to financial support feel hesitant when requesting the alimony payments they need. Whether you want reimbursement for working while your spouse went to school, financial help as you reestablish your career, or long-term spousal maintenance, consider retaining a dedicated legal advocate.
An experienced Hartford spousal support lawyer can help you fight for your rights to alimony. Call us today to begin building your case.