Long Island Spousal Support Attorney
Spousal support is long-term or short-term monetary payment from an independent spouse to a dependent spouse as a result of a divorce or a legal separation. In addition, family court has the power to award spousal support between spouses who live apart but have not filed actions for divorce or separation. Spousal support awarded in actions for divorce or separation is also known as "maintenance" in the state of New York. This form of monetary payment covers the dependent spouse’s daily needs, which may include: shelter, food, clothing, and medical expenses. When two people decide to marry one another, they establish a set way of living. If the people divorce, to the extent that such a standard of living has been established over time, divorce law seeks to help the dependent spouse to maintain that way of living through the receipt of spousal support. Spousal support should provide sufficient income for the dependent spouse to live within such an established marital means, at least until the dependent spouse is able to become self supporting.
In New York, there are two types of spousal support that may be awarded by the court. In all spousal support cases, the judge must use discretion when making an award decision. In determining maintenance the judge will consider the non-dependent spouse’s ability to pay, as well as other factors considered in awarding equitable distributions. The two types of spousal support are permanent support and rehabilitative support.
- Permanent support is payment for daily needs such as food, shelter, clothing, insurance, and medical expenses. Before a spouse can be awarded permanent support, he/she must prove that they are in need of it. Once permanent support is awarded, the independent spouse must make payments indefinitely, or until a change of circumstances occurs.
- Rehabilitative support is temporary payment that allows the dependent spouse to develop his/her vocational skills. Rehabilitative support is meant to help the dependent spouse return to a state of financial self sufficiency.
Any award of maintenance must terminate upon the death of either party or the remarriage of the dependant spouse.
Spousal Support Attorney
Any person who is going through a divorce or separation should speak with a skilled matrimonial law attorney. A matrimonial attorney can explain the laws surrounding spousal support, inform a person of his/her legal options, challenge spousal support terms in court, and protect the person’s individual rights.
Contact a Long Island spousal support lawyer at our law firm for help with your case.