A Short Guide to South Dakota Alimony Calculators
What is a South Dakota alimony calculator?
An alimony calculator helps an attorney and their client to estimate the cost of spousal support using a few important variables. Unfortunately, since they rely on states to have strict alimony formulas, alimony calculators in South Dakota are very inaccurate. But even if you can’t depend on an actual alimony calculator in South Dakota, you can still estimate your alimony award with a little research and common sense.
Part One: The Rough South Dakota Alimony Calculator
We don’t need a strict South Dakota alimony calculator to start the estimation process, but rather a ballpark figure that we can later refine. To do that, find some general financial figures from your divorce and follow this South Dakota alimony calculator:
1. Calculate the joint cost of your married standard of living. That means adding up all the costs incurred by you as a couple living together, such as food and shelter expenses. If you’ve lived apart for some time, disregard that time and instead begin with when you last lived together. Also, don’t include costs related to the care of a minor child or dependent adult.
2. Find the individual cost of your married standard of living by simply dividing the joint cost in two. This isn’t a hard number that will stand the scrutiny of logic—rent costs, for instance, will be significantly cheaper for two than one—but it helps establish the field of numbers that we are looking in.
3. Now find the difference between the income of the lower-earning spouse and the individual cost of their married standard of living. That is likely near the annual figure that they will likely be requested from the attorneys of the petitioning spouse, though they might mark it up significantly.
4. To find the monthly alimony payment, all you have to do is divide the result of Step #3 in 12.
If you’d like an example to make sure that you understand, consider a marriage in which one spouse makes $21,500 a year and the other $90,000 a year.
Consider their expenses include a $25,000 per month rent check, another $20,000 in food costs, $10,000 in other goods, and $8,000 in utilities and other expenses.
That’s a $63,000 joint cost of married standard of living.
Divided in half that’s $31,500.
Subtract from that the lower income and you have $10,000 in yearly alimony payments, or approximately $833 per month.
Part Two: Refining the Alimony Calculator for South Dakota
Once you get a rough estimate of your alimony, you should run through the factors a South Dakota judge will consider in his alimony decision. Predict whether they will raise or lower your alimony award:
• The duration of the marriage, with only marriages of five years or more getting awards normally.
• The earning capacity of both spouse.
• The age of the lower earning spouse.
• Whether one spouse contributed to the earning potential of the other.
• Whether further education is needed for the lower-earning spouse to find appropriate employment.