Temporary Vs. Permanent Alimony

Temporary and permanent alimony is part of spousal support guidelines which can be agreed on in or out of court. Alimony, also called spousal support, is a specific amount of money a spouse pays to their ex-spouse. Typically, alimony is provided to the spouse who is not as financially well off as their spouse. The alimony, under the terms of either a court order by a judge or agreed on by both parties. The amount of money paid can be temporary or permanent depending on the stage or the divorce and the extenuating circumstances.

Temporary Alimony Is Given Before the Divorce

Temporary alimony can be provided after the spouses separates. In other words, the spouses’ divorce doesn’t have to be finalized before the ex-spouse receives alimony. Typically, both parties agree to and draw up a marital separation agreement. The agreement outlines the payment amounts and how much will be paid. A temporary alimony agreement doesn’t have to be approved by a judge. However, according to Legal Zoom, if the temporary alimony agreement is filed with the court, the judge can decide whether the amount is appropriate. For instance, a judge may decide if the amount of the temporary supposal support is fair. Or the judge can ask if either spouse was coerced or talked into signing the agreement.

Permanent Alimony Continues Until the Ex-Spouse Remarries or Either Spouse Dies

Permanent alimony is just that—continuous. The judge determines or agrees to the amount of spousal support. Usually one of three things has to occur. The payee or payer dies or the ex-spouse remarries. However, the permanent alimony can be adjusted for a variety of reasons. For example, ex-spouse making the payments suffers a job loss or the spouse receiving the money an additional source income. The judge will usually adjust the spousal support payments. The judge will often take into consideration if the alimony reduction is in good faith and has merit before agree to it.

Seek Legal Advice about Alimony

Since spousal support guidelines may vary by state, individuals interested in either temporary or permanent spousal support should contact a divorce lawyer. The lawyer will explain the spousal support guidelines in their particular state and if spouses can receive alimony temporary or for a specific amount of time.

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