Massachusetts Alimony Lawyers in Mansfield, MA | Bristol County
Alimony can be a hotly contested divorce matter. When a dependent party needs support and the independent party disputes what the other deserves, it can easily lead a couple to a heated court battle. There are many instances of court cases based on this sole issue. A lot of factors go into a court’s determination of alimony. The most significant factor is the duration of the marriage. If you are facing a divorce and alimony is an unresolved legal matter, contact The Law Offices of Cynthia L. Hanley, P.C. For over 30 years, our firm has provided quality, forthright legal services focused on the best interests of our clients. With so much at stake, it is critical to pick the right attorney. For a consultation, contact The Law Offices of Cynthia L. Hanley, P.C.
Alimony in Massachusetts
Alimony is the legal obligation for one party to financially support the other after a divorce. The only people that can request alimony are the people divorcing and those already divorced. There are 4 types of alimony available to people in the state.
- General term alimony: This is a regular payment from one spouse to another for a determinate period. The length of the marriage will determine the support obligation.
- Rehabilitative alimony: This is a regular payment for a short period of time to help the dependent party become financially stable.
- Reimbursement alimony: This is support that can be paid regularly or as a one-time payment after a marriage to reimburse one party for the cost of supporting the other while he or she pursued education or job training.
- Transitional alimony: This is a support obligation that helps a person settle into their new life. It can be a regular payment or lump sum and only applies to marriages of less than 5 years.
General term alimony
The term at which a person may have to pay an ex-spouse through this structure depends greatly on the duration of the marriage. The longer the marriage, the greater the duration of support:
- Marriages lasting less than 5 years: Alimony cannot be required for more than 50% of the duration of the marriage.
- Marriages lasting less than 10 years: Alimony cannot be required for more than 60% of the duration of the marriage.
- Marriages lasting less than 15 years: Alimony cannot be required for more than 70% of the duration of the marriage.
- Marriages lasting less than 20 years: Alimony cannot be required for more than 80% of the duration of the marriage.
- Marriages greater than 20 years: The court will determine a fair and just obligation at the discretion of the judge.
Other factors that play into alimony
There are a few other reasons why alimony would normally stop, including:
- Remarriage or cohabitation of the dependent spouse
- The paying party reaches “full retirement age”, unless decided otherwise by a court
There are a few reasons why a judge would consider an extension of alimony, including
- A significant change in circumstances after alimony was decided
- Evidence for an extension that is clear and convincing
If you are receiving support and need to extend the obligation, you may file a Complaint for Modification. It is up to the judge’s discretion to issue a modification.
Contact a Mansfield, Massachusetts alimony attorney
Alimony can be one of the biggest issues of a divorce. Whether you are a person obligated to pay or the person who needs support, having the right attorney is important. For over 30 years, The Law Offices of Cynthia L. Hanley, P.C. has provided quality and effective legal support to clients across Massachusetts. If you need our help, please contact our firm for a consultation to discuss your legal matter.