Kendall County Alimony Lawyer

Spousal Maintenance or Spousal Support in Illinois

Maintenance, alimony and spousal support are all one in the same depending on what statute or code you're referring to. Most laypeople call it alimony.

Unlike child support, there are no hard and fast rules regarding the amount or duration of maintenance. You need to speak with an experienced attorney and/or obtain a second opinion on your potential right to receive or duty to pay maintenance. As most issues in a divorce, there is a vase difference between cases in whether maintenance should be paid, the amount that should be paid and duration it should be paid for.

In some cases, maintenance is not even sought. In some, it is sought but not awarded. In a short-term marriage in which the earnings of both parties are substantially the same, it is doubtful maintenance would be awarded. Each party is "made whole" by an equitable division of the assets. Conversely, if there was a long-term marriage with few assets and there is a substantial difference between the spouse's income (or potential for income), maintenance is probably appropriate.

When ordered, maintenance is typically tax deductible by the obligor (the person who pays) and taxable to the obligee (the person who receives). There are reasons that maintenance would terminates by operation of law, ie. the death of either party or the remarriage or cohabitation with another adult by the obligee. In other situations it may terminate by its own terms-ie. a specified period of time or amount.

The obligee generally has a duty to rehabilitate himself or herself into the workplace to become self-supportive, unless this is unrealistic because of age, health, or some other legitimate reason, in which case maintenance may be permanent. Sometimes in lieu of maintenance, a disproportionately favorable award (more than 50%) of the marital assets is awarded to the lesser-earning spouse.

Whether or not maintenance is awarded, the duration it is awarded for, and the amount that is ordered to be paid is very fact specific. This issue is one of the topics you should discuss during your initial divorce lawyer consultation.

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