Spousal support, formerly known as “alimony”, refers to payments made from one spouse to the other during and or after the divorce. Either spouse can be ordered to pay support to the other; the award of spousal support is based on factors such as income discrepancy, length of the marriage, need of the lower-income spouse, and lifestyle acclimation.
There are no hard and fast guidelines in Ohio as to whether spousal support should be ordered, and if so, how much. It is a very grey area that often times becomes a point of contention in a divorce for that very reason; it is abstract and the law provides no black and white guidance. The courts are guided by §3105.18 of the Ohio Revised Code in deciding whether or not to award spousal support, and delineates fourteen factors for consideration, (see the statute here).
A spousal support order can be a temporary order to last through the pendency of the action, and or a more permanent order to last for a set duration after the case is over. It all depends on the unique circumstances of the particular case. Spousal support can be modified, (if the court retains jurisdiction over the issue), or terminated based on “changes in circumstances”.
Generally speaking, the following non-exclusive factors are helpful in determining a spousal support award, if any, and are relied on by the court in making its determinations:
- The length of the marriage
- The discrepancy in income between the parties
- The sacrifice of one spouse to either raise the family, forego a career, or helping the other spouse with his or her career
- Health issues or disability of a spouse
- The requesting spouse’s standard of living prior to the divorce
- The level of education of the spouses and earning capability of both spouses
- Any fact the Court finds to be relevant and equitable
Contact Cavinder Law Office and support attorney Jason Cavinder now if you have questions about spousal support. We can assess your unique situation and provide you with answers. The consultation is free and confidential. Or, if you simply have questions relating to the topic of spousal support, we are ready to help. We can be reached by telephone at (937) 751-4949, or by email at Jason@CavinderLaw.com.