Will Alimony Be an Issue in Your Divorce Case?
In Texas, what you may commonly call alimony is referred to by the law as spousal maintenance. Both terms refer to monetary payments made from one divorcing spouse to another for a period of time after the divorce is finalized.
Spousal maintenance is separate from child support payments and any award made by the court regarding the way that community property will be divided. It will not be ordered in every case as the Texas legislature has determined that it is only appropriate in certain limited circumstances.
Eligibility for Spousal Maintenance
If a spouse requests spousal maintenance, the first issue a judge will look at is whether the party is eligible. Under Texas Law, spousal maintenance is only appropriate where the requesting spouse will not have enough property after the division of the community to meet his or her “minimum reasonable needs,” which is usually considered to be the spouse’s monthly expenses.
The court can consider the property the spouse will receive as part of the community as well as any separate property the spouse owns. Once the judge finds that the spouse’s minimum reasonable needs will not be met after the property division, the spouse also has to prove one of the following:
The length of the marriage is at least 10 years and the payee spouse has made efforts while the divorce has been pending to earn income or develop skills to meet the payee spouse’s minimum reasonable needs.
- The payor spouse has inflicted family violence.
- The payee spouse has a disability that is incapacitating.
- A child of the marriage has a disability, which prevents the payee spouse from earning an income due to his or her caretaking responsibilities.
Contract a Sugar Land, TX Spousal Maintenance Attorney
If you believe that spousal maintenance may be ordered in your divorce case, you should seek out the assistance of a Sugar Land divorce attorney who can make sure that alimony is appropriate and that the issue is resolved as favorably as possible. The Katy at The Vendt Law Firm, P.L.L.C. has the knowledge and skill to represent you during your divorce. Call our firm at (832) 276-9474 to meet with our divorce attorney soon.