Spousal support, also known as alimony, is money that is paid by one spouse, either temporarily or permanently, to the other spouse during and/or after the divorce. Our Northern Virginia, Washington, DC and Maryland divorce and alimony lawyers have extensive experience handling all aspects of alimony issues, from assessing reasonableness of requests for alimony to engaging experts to achieve results.
A party may be ordered by the court to pay temporary support, often referred to as "pendente lite" [pending litigation] support, in order to maintain the status quo while the divorce is pending. In some jurisdictions, like Maryland, the Court only considers (1) need; and (2) ability to pay in determining temporary support. To determine alimony awards that extend beyond the date of divorce, the Court often considers many factors, such as the length of the marriage, earning capacity and employability of the requesting spouse, career choices and sacrifices made for the benefit of the other spouse, mental and physical health, disparity in income between spouses, lifestyle enjoyed during the marriage, and the education and training necessary for a spouse to become self-supporting, among other factors. Even if both spouses are employed on a full-time basis, if one spouse earns substantially more than the other, then the higher earning spouse may be ordered to pay alimony, at least for a period of time, so that the standard of living does not dramatically decline immediately during or after the divorce.
At our firm, we engage the experts necessary to defend against excessive alimony requests, or ensure financial security for a client who needs it. We also work with tax professionals as necessary to assess the tax implications of an alimony award. In other words, whether you are seeking alimony or seeking to avoid paying it, we leave no stone unturned and will aggressively advocate for you.