Hawaii Alimony and Spousal Support Laws
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Hawaii courts may grant alimony if the court determines it is necessary during the divorce proceedings. The alimony payments are meant to help offset any disparity between the parties in employability or assets.
Types of Spousal Support
- Temporary – granted at the discretion of the court during the divorce proceedings and before the final decree.
- Short-Term – may be granted to allow the receiving party time to gain necessary skills.
- Long-Term or Permanent – may be granted to a party who has significant needs, usually reserved for lengthy marriages.
Who is Eligible for Alimony in Hawaii
Hawaii courts have wide discretion in considering factors to determine whether alimony is appropriate in cases of divorce. Alimony is a support payment meant to help the payee spouse adjust to the financial situation as a result of divorce.
Hawaii Alimony Guidelines (Factors for Awarding Alimony)
A Hawaii divorce court may consider the following factors to determine alimony in a given case:
- Financial resources of the parties;
- Ability of the spouse seeking alimony to meet needs independently;
- Duration of the marriage;
- Standard of living established during marriage;
- Age and condition of the parties;
- Occupations during marriage;
- Skills and employability of the party seeking support;
- Needs of the parties;
- Custodial and child support responsibilities;
- Other factors which impacting the financial condition of the parties; and
- Probable duration of support needs.
Reasons for Termination or Modification of Alimony in Hawaii
Substantial change in circumstances which impacts the paying spouse’s ability to pay is the most common reason for modification of alimony in Hawaii. The party that seeks modification must file papers as to the reason and provide any proof available to assist the court.
Marital Fault in Hawaii
No fault divorce may be granted in Hawaii in cases where the parties claim irreconcilable breakdown of the marriage or where the parties are living apart for two years and it is just to grant a divorce given the circumstances.
How Long Does Spousal Support Last in Hawaii?
Length of support is determined on a case-by-case basis. Length of marriage, needs of the parties and child custody are factors the court may consider in determining the length of a particular support agreement.
Hawaii Alimony Taxes
The paying spouse is entitled to claim the alimony payments as a deduction on federal income taxes. Likewise, the receiving spouse must claim the payments as income if they are court ordered. A tax professional or an attorney can advise you of the tax implications of your agreement.
Find an Alimony Attorney in Hawaii
Discuss the best way to handle your divorce with an experienced family law attorney. An attorney will make the process easier by filing and filing out paperwork and advocating on your behalf throughout the proceedings. A lawyer can help diffuse some of the intense emotions that go along with divorce.