6 Interesting Facts About Alimony
Alimony is a sum of money paid by one spouse to the other when they separate or divorce. In Oklahoma, there are many factors affecting whether a spouse is entitled to alimony, which is often referred to as spousal support. The purpose of the support is to help one spouse, who is in need, gain financial independence when the other spouse has the financial ability to pay.
6 Interesting Facts About Alimony in Oklahoma
Every state has its own laws concerning alimony. Some things you should know about alimony in Oklahoma include but are not limited to, the following.
1. How to qualify for spousal support.
The court may consider any relevant factor when deciding whether to award alimony with the two main considerations being the ability of one spouse to pay and why the receiving spouse needs support. Some considerations include:
- The length of the marriage.
- The couple’s lifestyle during the marriage.
- Reasons why the requesting spouse needs support.
- The requesting spouse’s contribution to the financial gain of the other spouse.
- Health of both spouses.
- Ages of both parties.
- Employability of requesting spouse.
- Any other factor the court deems appropriate.
2. How the amount and duration is determined.
Each case is determined individually, and the state has no set formula as to how the amount is determined.
3. Alimony is never ordered to be paid just to punish a spouse. Although there are several different grounds for divorce in Oklahoma, such as adultery, abandonment, and more, alimony will not be ordered to punish an errant spouse who is at fault for the divorce should they be attempting to file an at-fault divorce. However, an exception may be made if the misconduct caused the other spouse’s need for support. At-fault divorce is not very common in Oklahoma though since it is a no-fault state.
4. Unpaid court-ordered alimony accumulates and is called “alimony arrears.”
It cannot be discharged in bankruptcy. The receiving spouse may have your wages garnished or take you to small claims court to collect alimony arrears.
5. The parent who has custody of the children may be entitled to a higher amount.
The court considers all relevant factors including which parent has custody of the children, and the custodial parent will likely receive more alimony.
6. It is automatically terminated when the receiving spouse remarries.
It also terminates upon the death of either spouse. If the receiving spouse cohabitates, then the amount of alimony may be reduced or terminated if the paying spouse can show the cohabitation has changed that spouse’s need for support.
For Assistance Contact Oklahoma City Family Law Firm Owens Law Office
At Owens Law Office, Divorce Attorney Phillip P. Owens has more than 20 years of experience in achieving the best possible outcome for each person’s unique divorce situation. The issue of alimony, whether you are the receiving or paying spouse, can have a major impact on your life. Contact us to learn more about how we can help.