Georgia Alimony Laws

How Long Does Alimony Last?

Alimony is spousal support that one spouse has to pay after a divorce. This court-ordered spousal support varies widely from state to state. Generally speaking, some principles are universal. These principles include determining alimony based on the income of each spouse and on the length of the marriage. 

Alimony is not always granted to a spouse. This is because there has to be proof that financial dependence was established during the course of the marriage. Even in cases where a spouse became financially dependent on the other spouse during a marriage, alimony is not 100% guaranteed. 

Family court determines the necessity of spousal support based on several factors. If the income of one spouse is significantly less than the other’s, then this might be considered in favor of alimony. Likewise, if the estate of one spouse is significantly smaller it’s also a point toward establishing payments.

The standard of living, employability, and ages of the spouses all play a role in determining spousal support. All these factors considered, the spousal support agreement can be one of the most difficult agreements to reach during divorce proceedings. A divorce attorney, like those at the Edwards Law Group, can help navigate you through this complex process. 

Several variables come into play when considering support. One such variable is whether or not the divorce is ‘fault-based.’ If the divorce was initiated based on a fault made by a spouse then alimony can be affected. Georgia has 12 grounds for fault-based divorce

Conversely, child custody is not a factor that judges can consider when awarding alimony. Meaning, if a spouse receives physical custody they can’t use that determination to benefit their alimony agreement. 

There are three types of alimony in Georgia. These three types of support depend on the specific circumstances of the divorce. The three types are permanent, temporary, or rehabilitative. 

Permanent alimony is not really permanent. There are scenarios under which it can be ceased. Theoretically permanent spousal support ends if a spouse dies or if they remarry. It can also be changed through a spousal support modification. It can also be agreed upon that these payments are for a set amount of time. Or, that they are paid out until the dependent spouse gains sufficient income. 

Is there a way to calculate Alimony in Georgia?

Courts determine alimony first and foremost on ability and need. What does this mean? If one spouse has the ability to pay alimony and another spouse requests spousal support then a judge can determine the need

As we wrote earlier in this article, there are a set of legally defined factors that determine an alimony award. We’ll go over these 8 alimony determining factors here. Before we do that you should know that no standard formula or calculator exists for determining spousal support in Georgia. 

The 8 factors are Standard of Living, Duration of Marriage, Age/Physical/Emotional Condition of both parties, Financial Resources, the time needed to train or learn in order to find employment, contribution to the marriage, condition of the parties, and all other relevant factors. 

Atlanta Divorce Lawyers – The Edwards Law Group

How should you pick which divorce lawyer is best for you? There’s no simple answer to this question. There are things you can ask and consider. Experience in family law and divorce cases is paramount. Meeting in person and asking about their strategy is recommended. 

Our firm can offer you 15 years of family law experience and stellar reviews. We’re a driven family law practice that prides itself in compassionate and professional legal service. Give us a call or contact us today to set up your consultation.