Law Office of Kevin L. Beard, P.A.

Why is alimony essential?

A lot of Maryland residents going through divorce might question whether alimony is correct for them to pursue on a purely moralistic level. However, there are sound reasons why a spouse might need and want alimony, and based on these reasons, one can clearly understand why alimony is not only legally appropriate in many situations, but also fair. Here are some of the primary reasons why alimony is essential:

— Most spouses who pursue alimony have sacrificed something in their marriage, particularly their time and career ambitions, in order to invest in the rearing of their families or caring for the family home. Alimony honors this difficult-to-quantify investment by helping ex-spouses maintain the same standard of living they enjoyed during marriage.

— Alimony also recognizes that many nonworking spouses have assisted their working counterparts to pursue their career ambitions and increase their earning powers. Sometimes, nonworking spouses assist financially in helping the working spouses advance their educations. Alimony serves to honor these contributions and sacrifices.

— Alimony further recognizes the fact that, even if assets are divided half-and-half, career-oriented spouses will be able to add to their assets quickly, while nonworking spouses will deplete their assets due to a lower earning capacity. Alimony serves to equalize this lack of balance by subsidizing the lesser earning spouse's income and/or helping the spouse pay for education and training to advance his or her career.

Considering the above three points, alimony definitely makes sense from the perspective of what is fair. However, alimony may not be legally appropriate in all circumstances; therefore, divorcing Maryland spouses may want to discuss their unique situations with an experienced family law attorney.

Source: Forbes, "What Divorcing Women Need To Know About Alimony 'Reform'," Jeff Landers, accessed Oct. 14, 2016

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