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The Law Office of Gregory J. Calabrese, PLLC

An Unparalleled Client Experience

Metro-Detroit Divorce Attorney

Q:  What is alimony/spousal support?
A:  Spousal support is awarded by a Court or the parties may agree that it should be paid. Sometimes an alimony award is for the lifetime of the receiving spouse (or until remarriage), but more usually, it is a temporary order.  Alimony is a sum of money usually paid by one spouse to another spouse for their support and maintenance.  Alimony is always modifiable unless you give up your statutory right and make it non-modifiable. Unlike what many people think, it is not a punitive order.  Ideally, it is an order that courts make to provide each spouse with an equal share of the pre-separation income so that neither spouse is disadvantaged financially following a separation.

Q:  What factors does a court consider in determining eligibility for and the amount of spousal support?

A:  In Michigan, a court considers the following factors:  the past relations and conduct of the parties,  the length of the marriage, the ability of the parties to work, the source and amount of property awarded to the parties, the age of the parties, the ability of the parties to pay alimony, the present situation of the parties, the needs of the parties, the health of the parties, the prior standard of living of the parties and whether either is responsible for the support of others, general principles of equity.  Some are weighed more heavily than others by a court or judge, depending on the nature each specific case.  A judge does have wide discretion when allocating spousal support.