Financial Struggle

You've gone through a lot in your divorce. Your split comes with a lot of questions about property division, child custody, possibly alimony, among a host of other issues. The legal services of a family law attorney experienced with those issues, specifically including alimony, can help. When you are going through a divorce, contact The Law Office of Hans R. Hailey. We can help fight for your rights.

What is Alimony?

Alimony, or spousal support, is often an issue in divorce proceedings, but is obviously also an issue in separate support proceedings.  Alimony is not determined according to principals of reward or punishment but is based upon the need of the recipient spouse and the ability of the other spouse to pay alimony. So, the spouse that initiated the breakup of the marriage will not pay any more or less alimony because that party initiated the divorce. The exception is if there was financial misconduct that had a financial impact on the family. Spending substantial conjugal money on a relationship outside the marriage, for instance, will definitely be accounted for in the amount.

In Divorce: How Marriage Alimony is Determined

How can you estimate the amount of alimony that you might receive or pay? Massachusetts adopted a formula to determine the amount of alimony to be paid and for how long it should be paid.

In 2011, Massachusetts made major changes to the law of alimony. There are now has four types of alimony: general term alimony, rehabilitative alimony, reimbursement alimony and transitional alimony. Which type is most appropriate is quite fact dependent.

To determine whether alimony is due, Massachusetts courts are still required to consider:

  • the length of the marriage,
  • conduct during the marriage,
  • age,
  • health,
  • station,
  • occupation,
  • sources of income,
  • vocational skills,
  • employability,
  • estate,
  • liabilities and needs of each of the parties.

The focus, however, is on two of these factors: the need for support and the ability to pay.

Where the issue of alimony is raised, the issue of tax consequences follows right behind.  Alimony is taxable to the recipient and deductible by the payor.  In addition, if child support is also an issue, then an appropriate tax arrangement can be made by denominating part or all of alimony as child support because child support is not taxable to the recipient or deductible by the payor.  The best tax savings for both parties is not something to ignore.

An alimony attorney from The Law Office of Hans R. Hailey can help you determine what dollar amount is fair for your case. Contact our family law firm today.  Attorney Hailey frequently represents clients with family law matters in Boston and throughout Massachusetts.

Call (617) 571-7200 for a free consultation with an experienced family law attorney.