The Basics for Alimony in Washington
There are divorce cases in Washington that may involve one spouse not obtaining assets or acquiring an estate of some kind due to the property distribution that would benefit the spouse financially. It’s those cases that may deem something called ‘alimony’ in Washington that is completely necessary for the court to order.
These are the basics for alimony in Washington. And for starters, learning what alimony is – also known as ‘spousal support’ – is crucial.
The Basic Definition of Alimony in Washington
It’s a type of support that requires one party in a divorce to make supplemental payments to the other in the event that a divorce has negative financial consequences – such as a lack of property or assets and a decrease in income that would otherwise not occur during the marriage.
This is essentially common in any divorce. Typically, one party loses some income in a divorce, hence the necessity for alimony in Washington.
There are, however, two types of alimony in Washington for a court to consider:
The Types of Alimony in Washington
1. Temporary Maintenance
2. Permanent Maintenance
Both types of alimony are pretty common and for different reasons. ‘Temporary’ maintenance simply involves payments on a temporary basis, typically during the whole divorce process. It can involve these particular factors:
3. Job Change
Anything in regards to the readjustment to the divorce can be applied to the need for ‘temporary’ alimony payments.
In regard to ‘permanent’ maintenance, the factors are slightly different:
1. Physical Disability
2. Mental Disability
3. Permanent Lack of Income
Generally speaking, if a spouse can’t reasonably obtain some source of income to sustain himself or herself without the other spouse, the court will award this form of support.
However…the state of Washington encourages the court to consider these standards and requirements when considering alimony and how much alimony to award:
Requirements for Alimony in Washington
1. Finances for Both Spouses Are Considered
2. The Duration of the Marriage Is Considered
3. The Standard of Living During the Marriage Is Considered
4. The Time It Will Take for the Spouse Seeking Support to Obtain Employment/Education
5. Age of Both Spouses
6. Physical Condition of Both Spouses
7. Emotional Condition of Both Spouses
These are important for any court to consider, because every divorce petition is different. Every marriage is different. And not every situation requires alimony.
In addition, alimony isn’t the same as child support in the sense that there are no provisions for wage garnishment or tax garnishment when it comes to alimony. This, however, doesn’t mean that a spouse with an order to receive alimony can’t file a complaint in court and establish and order for contempt on the part of the spouse holding the requirement to pay alimony.
The Importance of Alimony
No matter how anyone looks at it, there are certain aspects of divorce that can be seen as unfair to either party. Alimony is a way to rectify any negative changes that can happen to either party.
It would be important to any party in a divorce to know the facts, know the law, and know what to expect.