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Manhattan Alimony and Maintenance Lawyers

The state of New York recently passed a law related to spousal maintenance and alimony that has had an important impact on divorces taking place throughout the region. Specifically, the law relates to temporary spousal and divorce spousal maintenance.

Temporary Spousal Maintenance Explained

The notion of temporary spousal maintenance arises when a divorce in a status of pending. Spousal maintenance post-divorce is meant to begin once the divorce is officially granted. Prior to his new law coming into effect, there was no specific method for determining post-divorce maintenance that could effectively calculate the money that was to be paid in the form of temporary spousal maintenance. This new law changes that by providing a set formula that the court is able to make use of. However, it is important to note that this formula included within the statute is only meant to be used as a guide. In other words, the judge in the case is able to adjust any amount that is determined to be paid. Before the judge does this, he or she will typically look at several different elements prior to making a final decision.

Formulas In Use Today

There are now two main types of formulas in use in New York to determine temporary spousal maintenance payments. The first is put into use when the spouse is question is also expected to pay for child support, while the second one is used when a spouse either receives child support payments or does not make them. This new law means that most cases will result in a lower temporary spousal maintenance amount when child support payments are also being made. This is typically due to the fact that the court will make the determination that the spouse in question has less money available for spousal maintenance payments if he or she is also expect to pay for child support.

The formula in use today also contains a cap on income, which is currently set at $175,000. If the spouse in question earns more than the $175,000 threshold, then only $175,000 will be considered when calculating the amount of temporary spousal maintenance payments. With that being said, deep in mind that the consumer price index updates every two years. This can result in a fluctuation of the income cap, after which the Court can then calculate payments based on the current cap. At that time, the amount of spousal support payments can be increased, or decreased depending on the situation.

When Does Temporary Spousal Maintenance End?

One way that temporal spousal maintenance payments will end is when one of the spouses dies, or when the divorce is actually finalized. There are also situations where the Court can end up denying temporary spousal support payments and opt instead to end any type of maintenance before the divorce is even finalized. In this case, any temporary spousal support that comes to an end before the finalization of the divorce is most often the result of the divorce proceedings taking an unusually long time to complete.

Another formula is used to help determine the amount of time support payments will take place after the divorce is finalized. If the marriage was less than 15 years, the support payments will generally be between fifteen to thirty percent of that total amount of time the couple was married. When the marriage lasted between fifteen and twenty years, the duration of payments will increase to between thirty and forty percent. Marriages over twenty years will see payments of a duration in the thirty-five to fifty percent range.

by Leonard on Spodek Law Group
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