According to Michigan’s Department of Health and Human Services, there were 28,186 divorces in the state in 2018. When a marriage ends, in or outside of the courts, there are always challenges. In addition to the emotional difficulties divorce creates, spouses have to face financial problems as well.
An experienced Michigan family law attorney can help you navigate the divorce process and determine the best spousal support, also known as alimony, arrangement for your specific situation. For more than two decades, Steven L. Rotenberg has provided Michigan residents with knowledgeable legal support. As your advocate, he will fight hard to protect your legal rights and your family’s best interests.
Steven L. Rotenberg, PLLC provides expert legal services to clients in Bingham Farms, Monroe, Pontiac, Mount Clemens, and the greater Detroit, Michigan area.
If one spouse needs financial support during or after the divorce, and the other spouse can afford to pay, they may request spousal support. The courts want to ensure the spouse’s financial needs are met during this difficult time of change.
In Michigan, there are four types of spousal support available: temporary, periodic, permanent, and lump-sum.
Temporary: As the name implies, temporary spousal support does not last forever. It is only available while the divorce is pending.
Periodic: Over a set amount of time, one spouse will receive alimony payments in equal installments if periodic spousal support is granted. Periodic support is the most common type of alimony in Michigan.
Permanent: Permanent spousal support lasts indefinitely, meaning when it is granted, there is no end date set for the alimony payments.
Lump-Sum: In a lump-sum alimony settlement, the spouse receives all of the alimony in one single payment.
Either spouse can ask for alimony, but they must request the spousal support in the initial paperwork. Typically, the person who receives spousal support will have a significantly lower income than the other spouse. The other spouse must respond to the request for spousal support.
Whether the judge will grant alimony (including the type and amount) depends on several key factors.
One of the most important factors the judge will consider is how long the marriage lasted. However, the length of the marriage is not the only consideration. The judge will also look at:
Whether a spouse’s actions caused the divorce
Each spouse’s age, health, financial situation, and needs
Each spouse’s ability to work
Each spouse’s prior standard of living
Whether either spouse will be supporting dependents
Any other relevant factors
Alimony will end when either spouse passes away or when the person who was granted the spousal support is remarried. The exception is if you agreed to different terms in the divorce settlement.
One consistent truth about life is that things will change, sometimes disrupting our finances. Life changes can affect how much alimony one spouse needs or how much the other spouse is able to pay. For example, if one spouse loses their job, then they may file for a modification of spousal support because they can no longer pay. Fraud, as well as a change in the needs of either spouse, can also be grounds for a modification of a spousal support agreement.
Steven L. Rotenberg can help you make sure your rights are protected and your interests are represented during the spousal support determination process. With over two decades of experience, he knows how the Michigan courts work and can assist you in your family legal matters. Steven L. Rotenberg, PLLC is proud to advocate for clients in Bingham Farms, Monroe, Pontiac, Mount Clemens, and the greater Detroit, Michigan area. Contact the firm today to schedule a consultation.