Alimony

Massachusetts Alimony Attorney

Getting You a Fair Spousal Support Agreement

Alimony, also called spousal support or spousal maintenance in some areas, is the money that one spouse pays to another after a divorce has been finalized. With alimony, the goal is to help a spouse maintain a similar lifestyle as they had prior to divorce. Alimony prevents either spouse from becoming disproportionately responsible for the other after the marriage has ended.

Alimony Pre-2012

Before March 2012, Massachusetts courts possessed a standardized formula for calculating alimony. The formula factored in things like the age of both spouses, opportunity for future asset acquisition, how long the two had been married, what each spouse contributed to the marriage, employability and overall financial conduct.

Alimony After 2012: The Alimony Reform Act

One of the major changes to alimony that came in March 2012 was durational limiting. Now, the duration of alimony has limits that correspond to the length of the marriage.

  • Married 5 years or less – alimony cannot exceed 50% of the length of the marriage
  • Married 10 years or less – alimony cannot exceed 60% of the length of the marriage
  • Married 15 years or less – alimony cannot exceed 70% of the length of the marriage
  • Married 20 years or less – alimony cannot exceed 80% of the length of the marriage

Other changes to alimony law included changing alimony at remarriage or cohabitation (termination upon remarriage and reduction/suspension on cohabitation for three months or longer) and alimony termination at retirement, at which point the spouse can receive Social Security.