How Do Courts Determine Length and Amount of Alimony?

How Do Courts Determine Length and Amount of Alimony?

Factors That Affect Alimony Payments

At Glouzgal Law PLLC we represent both husbands and wives in divorce proceedings, both as the party filing for divorce or defending against it. In most cases, the issues of alimony arises early on:

  • Who will pay alimony to who?
  • What will be the amount of the alimony payment?
  • How long will alimony payments last?

In deciding whether alimony should be awarded, and if so for how much and how long, the Court will consider a list of factors as provided by Connecticut General Statute Sec. 46b-82. The section provides that either party may be liable for alimony to the other. In coming to a decision, the Court will take evidence and hear testimony on:

  • the length of the marriage
  • the cause of the separation or divorce
  • the ages of the divorcing parties
  • the station and occupations of the divorcing parties
  • the amounts and sources of income for the divorcing parties
  • the vocational skills and employability of the divorcing parties
  • the estate (total assets) of each divorcing party, and
  • any other awards of property in connection with the divorce.

The Court is looking at the financial situation of each divorcing party, how much one party may have relied on the other for financial support, and whether the situations of either divorcing party are likely to change in the future. What the Court is doing is establishing a need, or lack of need, for the financial support of one of the parties, trying to evaluate the ability of the other party to provide that financial support, and finally deciding the extent of that financial support and when and if it should stop.

The Courts perception of the circumstances will depend heavily on which documents or testimony are presented to the Court and whether they are presented in the proper manner. While each factor is relevant, some are more relevant than others in specific situations, and those need to be highlighted to Court. An experienced Connecticut divorce attorney can be instrumental in the fair and adequate award of alimony.