Alimony, which is called “spousal support” in the modern day, is awarded by the Court to support the spouse who is unable to provide for his/her own needs, taking into account the style of living to which the parties have become accustomed during the marriage.

There is no “formula” that is used to figure out if alimony should be paid and if so, how much alimony should be paid. The Court looks to certain factors to determine if alimony is appropriate and then determines what amount is due by looking to the parties’ individual circumstances. A spousal support attorney in Massachusetts would do the same.

Massachusetts alimony

In Massachusetts, G.L. 208 §34 prescribes the following thirteen (13) factors that the Court considers to determine if alimony is appropriate and if so, how much should be paid:

1. Length of the marriage
2. Conduct of the parties during the marriage
3. Age of the parties.
4. Health of the parties
5. Station of the parties
6. Education, Vocational Skills, and Occupation of the parties
7. Income
8. Estate of the parties
9. Liabilities of the parties
10. Needs of the parties
11. Opportunity of future acquisition of assets
12. Contribution to Acquisition, preservation, and appreciation of value of the marital estate:
13. Contribution as homemaker to the family unit:

New Hampshire Spousal Support

In New Hampshire, RSA 458:19(IV)(b) dictates that the Court consider the following factors to determine if alimony is appropriate and if so, the amount of alimony awarded:

1. length of the marriage
2. age
3. health, social or economic status
4. occupation
5. amount and sources of income
6. the property awarded under RSA 458:16-a
7. vocational skills
8. employability
9. estate
10. liabilities
11. needs of each of the parties
12. opportunity of each for future acquisition of capital assets and income
13. fault of either party as defined in RSA 458:16-a, II(l)
14. federal tax consequences of the order.

Because the Court looks to these factors, and the argument is rather subjective, it is very important that you have a spousal support lawyer to articulate your position. If you are seeking alimony, you must make a valid argument, using these factors, that you are in a position where you are unable to provide for yourself to live in the same fashion as when married, yet your spouse is in the position to provide you support, either permanently or temporarily. If you are the party that does not want to provide support, you must make the argument that your spouse is able to provide for himself/herself and live in the same style as in the marriage using the factors and/or that you are not in a position to provide support to him/her. A legal professional can best apply your circumstances to the factors and make the best argument for you.

Contact a spousal support attorney today

Contact a spousal support lawyer serving New Hampshire and Massachusetts today to evaluate your case and to help you determine if alimony is a consideration in your case. Attorney Christine G. DeBernardis will help you to understand this process and show you how we will work to fight for the best outcome in your case. You can contact Christine G. DeBernardis here.