The Laws of Alimony in Missouri
Maybe that’s something a spouse can look forward to when dealing with an unwanted divorce? Alimony? Honestly, don’t bet on it.
Alimony, also known as “spousal support,” is the requirement on one spouse to financially support the other, most of the time temporarily. Although some divorces might require that permanent alimony be issued out.
The thing about alimony, especially alimony in MO, is that it’s not a definite. Each divorce case is unique, and not one single case can guarantee alimony for any party. Even if you happen to be a spouse believing that you deserve alimony, it doesn’t matter: there are so many other factors to consider, that you may end up not being awarded spousal support.
Child support, of course, is different. Why? It involves children. That’s a no-brainer! In a nutshell, if you have children, and you’re taking care of them, you have the right to child support. Plain and simple.
Alimony’s not that simple. But there are some guidelines considered by any family court when dealing with alimony in Missouri. Here it goes….
The Bases for Alimony in MO
The Uniform Marriage and Divorce Act states these common factors specifically for alimony. It doesn’t mean, though, that they’re the be-all and end-all of a decision to award alimony.
• The Age, Physicality, Emotional Health, and Finances of Spouses
• Time Length to Receive Training or Education for Self-Sufficiency
• Standard of Living
• Length of Marriage
• Whether or Not the Alimony Payer Can Support Both the Payee and Himself/Herself
Keep in mind that all of this would be considered. One factor won’t trump the rest; and a majority may not trump a minority either. It all depends on the situation, and every situation is unique.
This Should Tell Anyone Something About Alimony in Missouri
It’s a straight gamble when you think about it. Even if you may think a situation involving a divorce will end up not only with child support but alimony, it doesn’t matter: the court may see something else that can swing the decision completely around.
This is especially true when considering these other unique factors that may creep up in a deliberation for a divorce petition:
• Earning Capacity
• Earning Impairments
• Children in Home
• Tax Consequences
• Prenuptial Agreements
So think about this for a moment. What if one spouse has a physical disability? What happens to that spouse after a divorce? Big problems. However, on the flip side of the coin, maybe the other spouse’s job doesn’t pay a whole lot.
Considering finances on both ends is a big one for the court to determine whether or not alimony is necessary. This is especially true when determining the amount of alimony.
Obviously with alimony in MO, one big point is made. It’s simply this:
There’s No Formula for Spousal Support
None at all. The family court in Missouri would determine it cold, case by case, without the blind use of a formula. That’s just the way it goes.
The important thing, though, is that everything is considered. In that way, at least alimony can be considered fair in the eyes of the law.