If you live in New Jersey and are getting a divorce, alimony is probably on your mind. Whether you think you are going to receive it, or have to pay it, more than likely, alimony will be a hotly debated issue in your divorce negotiation. Alimony, also called spousal support, is simply money paid from one ex-spouse to another once the divorce is final.

The purpose is so spouses, regardless of income levels, can enjoy a post-divorce lifestyle similar to the one enjoyed during the life of the marriage. Additionally, it is available so one spouse is not left financially destitute after staying home to care for the house and children while the other built a substantial career during the marriage.

There are different kinds of spousal support agreements that a divorcing couple can consider. If you want to know which alimony agreement is best for you, speak to a qualified alimony attorney that can help. A New Jersey alimony lawyer can work towards a positive outcome for you.

Understanding Alimony

One of the first steps in determining alimony is to understand the different types allowable in New Jersey and then determine which one(s) applies to a person’s particular set of circumstances.

Alimony can actually be required before a person is officially divorced. If they are going through the New Jersey divorce process, they may either receive or be required to pay Pendente lite alimony. Pendente lite is Latin and stands for pending the litigation.

Why Would a Person Need to Pay Alimony

Paying alimony is typically appropriate when one spouse is considered the breadwinner and the other spouse takes care of the family; the caretaker. When there is a significant difference in the incomes of the parties and a marital standard, or status quo, that the court and the parties try to keep that consistent, especially if there are children involved, those are typical circumstances.

Legal Requirements Surrounding Alimony Payments

If a person is required to make payments for alimony, then they must pay. Depending upon the agreement, the payments would either go directly to the other spouse or go through the appropriate probation department for whichever vicinity or county they reside in. If the payments go through the probation department, the paying spouse either makes direct payments to the probation department and the probation department will disperse it to the receiving spouse, or the payment of alimony will be automatically garnished from the paying spouse’s wages.

Different Types of Alimony Allowed in New Jersey

During that divorce process, a person and their New Jersey alimony lawyer can discuss the types of alimony that may be applicable to their particular circumstances. There are four types of alimony currently recognized in New Jersey in applications for divorce:

  • Limited Duration Alimony: this type of support is granted until the dependent spouse has a change of circumstances, for instance, when the dependent spouse obtains a job. The amount given and length of time is specified and is usually short-lived
  • Rehabilitative Alimony: This type of alimony is awarded when it is believed that with training and/or education a spouse will be able to enter the workforce and find employment. When this is awarded, there is a plan in which the dependent spouse shows the steps to be taken, time frame, and period in which the dependent spouse expects to become employed
  • Reimbursement Alimony: This kind of spousal support is given when one spouse supports the other through training and/or school – is appropriate when one party supported the other through an advanced education, anticipating that the dependent spouse would have enjoyed the earning spouse’s higher income
  • Permanent Alimony: This is granted when it is believed that the dependent spouse will not be able to support themselves. It continues for life or until remarriage and is generally awarded when a spouse is unable to become self-supporting. This type of alimony is often awarded for long-term marriages where one spouse exited the workforce to be home taking care of children and/or the home

Final divorce arrangements can include a combination of these types of alimony depending on the particular financial situations and employment opportunities of the divorcing spouses. There are many factors and circumstances to be considered. A skilled New Jersey alimony lawyer will be able to look at a person’s situation and develop the best plan for their financial future. This may include using different types of alimony so a person can receive training and then launch into a very successful career.

Importance of Contacting A New Jersey Alimony Attorney

When going through a New Jersey divorce it is critical to fully understand each type of alimony and how each type can apply to you. The amounts and types of alimony you are awarded or that you have to pay, will have consequences on your child support payments and how other assets are divided. One important note, alimony is tax deductible for the payor and taxable income for the receiver and those rules alone can have a significant impact on your financial picture.

If you believe you are going to have to pay alimony or if you think you deserve to receive it, it is critical to discuss your situation with a New Jersey alimony lawyer. Not only are there legal options but also creative solutions to work out the best possible alimony plan for your future. Contact a qualified New Jersey alimony attorney that can advocate for you.