There are certain factors that will increase the likelihood of one spouse needing to pay alimony in a particular divorce. These factors are important to consider, whether you are the potential recipient or payer of alimony. Estimating the likelihood of alimony in your case will help you arrive at an out of court settlement rather than needing to litigate the matter in court.

Here are several factors that courts consider when making a decision about alimony:

What are the characteristics of the spouses?

When the court sees that both spouses are in excellent financial condition independently, excellent health, and are young enough to work and successfully earn an abundant income, the court will be less likely to award alimony. When the court sees that one spouse will have trouble being financially independent — for whatever reason — the court will be more inclined to order the spouse who is in good financial condition to pay alimony for a set period of time.

What will it take for the alimony recipient to become financially independent?

Depending on what it will take for the recipient of the alimony to become independent, this could affect the court’s decision to award alimony. If the potential recipient of alimony will require some education or training — and a period of time to complete this training — then the other spouse may need to pay alimony for that amount of time.

What was the standard of living enjoyed by the spouses during marriage?

Courts will try to award alimony at an amount that helps the less-moneyed spouse maintain the same standard of living that he or she maintained during the marriage.

Courts consider a lot more factors when making an alimony determination. If you are curious about your right to receive alimony — or whether you’re likely to pay alimony — reach out to a Maryland family law attorney now.