Alimony Lawyer | Dickinson, TX

Divorce is a life-altering event that is hard to navigate due to the complexities and emotional turmoil it comes with. Spousal support or alimony is one of the challenging aspects of divorce, as it involves financial implications that can be difficult to deal with.

As such, it is important for people undergoing divorce to have an experienced alimony lawyer with a thorough understanding of the concept so that they can better prepare themselves for negotiations during divorce proceedings and ensure that their rights are protected.

If you are currently going through a divorce or are considering getting one in the near future, it is important to not only educate yourself about alimony laws in Texas, but also consult with a family law attorney. These professionals will give you personalized advice and guidance on how alimony may apply to your specific situation. Call our offices at 281-262-1311 to learn more about your options.

What is Alimony?

Alimony Lawyer in Dickinson, Texas

Alimony is also known as spousal support. It refers to the financial support provided by one spouse to the other during or after separation or divorce. It is designed to address any economic disparities between spouses and ensure a fair and equitable transition to post-divorce life. Alimony may be awarded in various forms, including periodic payments, lump-sum payments, or transfers of assets.

There are three main purposes for alimony:

  • Spousal Rehabilitation– This entails helping a spouse who may have stayed home to raise children or forgo career advancement during the marriage to retrain or complete their education to get back into the workforce.
  • Maintenance– This is to ensure a similar standard of living for both parties following the divorce, especially if one spouse is financially dependent on the other.
  • Reimbursement– To compensate a spouse who made significant financial contributions to the other’s education or career advancement during the marriage.

Is Alimony Taxable?

Before December 31st, 2018, spousal support was deductible for the paying party and taxable income for the receiving spouse. However, following the enactment of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) in 2017, this tax treatment no longer applies. Alimony payments made pursuant to post-2018 divorce agreements are no longer deductible for the payer or taxable for the recipient, providing important considerations for divorce negotiations.

How Long Does Alimony Last?

The duration of alimony varies depending on an array of factors, the most common ones being the length of the marriage, the income disparity between the two, as well as the age and health of both parties. It can be:

Temporary: Awarded for a limited period to allow the lower-earning spouse time to become financially stable.

Rehabilitative: Designed to help a spouse gain skills for getting back into the workforce.

Permanent: In rare cases where a spouse is unable to work due to disability or age, permanent support might be awarded.

Spousal support typically ends when the receiving spouse remarries, cohabits in a romantic relationship, or dies. Major life changes for the paying spouse, such as retirement or disability, can also be grounds for modification or termination of spousal support.

How is Alimony Calculated?

Dickinson, TX Alimony Lawyer

While some couples may come to an agreement on spousal support, in other cases, a judge is required to calculate a fair amount for both parties. They will calculate your alimony based on the current income of both you and your spouse, the paying party’s ability to pay, as well as the needs of the receiving individual. For instance, they will check the difference in income between you two and consider the future earning potential as well.

The length of marriage is another key factor when determining the amount of alimony. Longer marriages are more likely to result in one spouse paying spousal support compared to shorter marriages. The judge may also consider both party’s expenses, parenting arrangements, and any child support awarded. Note that the difference between spousal support and child support is that the latter is meant to meet the young ones’ basic needs, while the former is designed to benefit the ex-spouse who has a lower income.

What Can Disqualify You From Alimony?

There are a few reasons why spousal support may be denied. They include:

(i) Significantly Higher Income than the Spouse

If you earn way more money than the other party, the judge will conclude that you do not require spousal support to maintain your lifestyle.

(ii) High Earning Potential

If you have a high earning potential, regardless of whether you are employed or not, you may be denied alimony.

(iii) Short-term marriage

Courts are less likely to award alimony in brief marriages, typically defined as those lasting less than a few years. The rationale is that the financial needs of each spouse haven’t significantly changed due to the marriage’s brevity.

(iv) Remarried or Cohabitating

Spousal support can also be disqualified if one party remarries or starts living with another person in a marriage-like relationship.

(v) At Fault for the Divorce

The court may also consider the responsibilities of both spouses when determining spousal support. If the receiving party was at fault for the divorce or separation, then they are less likely to be awarded alimony.

How Long Do You Have to Be Married to Get Alimony in Texas?

In Texas, the length of the marriage is an important factor in determining alimony. The Texas Family Code, Section 8 stipulates that a person has to be married for at least 10 years to get alimony for a maximum of 5 years. 7 years of alimony if they were married for at least 20 years and 10 years if they were married for at least 30 years.

Hire an Alimony Lawyer in Dickinson, TX, Today!

Jeffrey Hannah & Liz Hannah | Hannah Law, PC

The takeaway is that alimony is a complex legal concept that can have a significant impact on individuals going through a divorce. By understanding the basics of alimony, including its tax implications, duration, calculation methods, and eligibility criteria, you can better navigate the divorce process and ensure that your financial rights are protected. Again, you will want to seek the services of an experienced alimony lawyer to navigate the process.

By hiring Hannah Law, PC, in Dickinson, TX, you can rest assured you have an alimony lawyer who has handled such cases before and will be there to ensure a favorable outcome. Contact us today 281-262-1311 to schedule a free initial consultation.

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