Spousal Support / Alimony in Connecticut
About Alimony Laws
There is no law that states alimony will always be ordered when a couple divorces. Whether alimony will be paid, how much alimony will be paid and for how long it is to be paid are often among the most challenging issues to resolve in a divorce. When the question of spousal support comes up, the court will consider certain factors in making a determination about whether alimony is appropriate in a particular case. Some of these factors include:
- The duration of the marriage
- The causes for the breakdown of the marriage, such as whether either party is guilty of adultery or domestic violence
- The age, health, station, occupation, and economic needs of each spouse
- The future earning capacity of each spouse
- How the marital assets and debts are being divided in the divorce
It is possible to reach an out-of-court settlement on the matter of spousal support in an uncontested divorce. Mediation and collaborative law can be effective approaches for pursuing this goal. When this is not an option and the judge is called upon to rule on the matter, the above are the factors that he or she will use. Even in an uncontested divorce, the settlement agreement will be reviewed to ascertain whether it is in alignment with the provisions of Connecticut family law.
Other Common Questions About Alimony
What is alimony?
In Connecticut, alimony, otherwise referred to as spousal support, is money paid by one spouse to another either during the divorce, or upon the divorce becoming final, towards the other spouse's living expenses. It can be limited to a term of years or payable for a lifetime, depending on the particular circumstances of the case.
Can I receive alimony before my divorce is finalized?
Yes. Sometimes, the court will temporarily order alimony payments, also known as pendente lite orders.
Does fault matter in determining alimony in divorce proceedings?
The cause of the breakdown of the marriage will be considered by the Connecticut courts in making its financial awards. If the fault is substantial and contributes to the breakdown of the marriage, the court may compensate the party not at fault by giving that party a greater portion of the marital assets or more alimony than he or she would otherwise be awarded. The court will try to distribute the assets and available income as equitably as possible, taking into consideration all of the relevant facts.