Goldsboro Spousal Support Lawyers
When a marriage ends, the spouses are looking at a new, and perhaps uncertain financial future. This can be particularly true in cases where one spouse earned substantially more income. Spousal support–or alimony, as it’s called casually–is a way that North Carolina courts seek to level the economic playing field.
The Goldsboro spousal support lawyers at Strickland Agner Pittman are here to fight for your interests and protect your economic future. Call today at (919) 893-0090 or contact us online to set up a consultation.
The Purpose of Spousal Support
Spousal support is intended to ensure that each person can live the same lifestyle that they enjoyed during the marriage. Perhaps one parent gave up or cut back on their career for the sake of raising children. Or maybe it was a parent sacrificing career opportunities so they could be a caregiver to elderly parents. Another possibility is one spouse helping the other through graduate school or in starting a business–a circumstance that now sees the spouses with drastically different economic prospects for the foreseeable future.
The separation of the spouses might mean that neither one can really live at the exactly the same lifestyle they could when they were together. But a fair spousal support agreement can at least aim at seeing the sacrifices shared.
An important distinction also needs to be made regarding what spousal support is not. Spousal support payments are not the same as child support payments. As a practical matter, they might be paid in one lump monthly sum, but each serves a different purpose. Child support monies are to be used exclusively for the benefit of the kids. Spousal support money can be used more flexibly.
Types of Spousal Support
Courts consider a wide range of factors in determining an appropriate level of spousal support. The length of the marriage is a prime factor, as are the responsibilities that one or both spouses may have for raising children. These responsibilities point to an overarching issue that must be considered–if one spouse is economically disadvantaged, what are their prospects for earning more income in the future.
Every situation will be a little bit different. As such, the state of North Carolina has different types of spousal support that can be applied:
Post-Separation Support: This a temporary form of support that applies only from the point the couple becomes legally separated to when the divorce is finalized. The state of North Carolina requires that spouses be separated for a full year before filing for divorce.
Temporary Alimony: This is different from post-separation support because it kicks in after the divorce is finalized. In some states it’s called rehabilitative alimony. It can work in situations where one spouse simply needs time to ramp up their earning potential. This alimony schedule has a clear end-date established by the court.
Lump Sum Alimony: As the name implies, this is alimony paid off if one fell swoop. It might involve the transfer of property. It could also apply where the economically advantaged spouse is going to make a large payment that might be used for vocational training, the starting of a business or some other form of investment in the other spouse’s economic future.
Permanent Alimony: Another form of alimony where the name says it all .This is alimony that is awarded until either spouse dies or the recipient spouse remarries. North Carolina is one of the few states left that allow a judge to award alimony in perpetuity. It can apply when a long-term marriage ends, one spouse spent the marriage raising children and are now at a point when ramping up a career is going to be very difficult.
Strickland Agner Pittman understands that the divorce settlement process can be a scary one. Spouses need to know that their Goldsboro divorce lawyer is in their corner and fighting for their financial future.
We pride ourselves on fighting hard–we always fight fair and clean, but we don’t back down.