When we talk about alimony in a divorce, it is not necessarily a set monthly payment you will receive until you die. In fact, some people do not receive alimony in their divorce at all. However, under certain circumstances, an alimony award may be warranted. To understand the types of alimony and whether or not you could be entitled to an award, it is important to speak with an experienced Rolling Meadows family law attorney.
Permanent Maintenance Alimony
Permanent maintenance alimony is what most people think about when discussing alimony. However, this type of support is usually reserved for couples who have been married for a long time (20 years or more) and one spouse sacrificed their career in order to stay home and raise their children. If a spouse is disabled or has an illness that makes it impossible to care for themselves, then the court may consider an award of permanent maintenance, as well.
Temporary Alimony in Illinois is also called temporary maintenance. This is an alimony award that is paid out while the divorce is pending. The idea behind temporary alimony is to cover the spouse’s living expenses while the divorce is being finalized. This provides income to the spouse while they live apart during the divorce. If a spouse wants temporary alimony, they usually request it in the petition, although it can be requested at any time while your divorce is pending. Once the divorce is finalized, temporary alimony will end.
Rehabilitative alimony will start after the divorce is finalized and continue for a specified length of time. The idea behind this type of alimony is to help one spouse get back on their feet. Perhaps they need time to finish a degree or obtain some job training that will enable them to be self-supporting.
Also called fixed-term alimony, rehabilitative alimony is often awarded to people who gave up their own career for a few years or gave up their own educational and training opportunities while relying on the other spouse’s income. If one spouse has limited earning capacity but could maintain their standard of living after training or additional education, then rehabilitative alimony would likely be the type awarded.
Courts will look at a variety of factors when deciding on an alimony award. There are statutory guidelines they can refer to, and they can then use their discretion to deviate if the situation warrants it. For example, in a marriage that lasted at least 10 years, but less than 15 years, an alimony award would typically be a certain percentage of the duration of the marriage, which is a lower figure than a marriage that lasted at least 15 years but less than 20.
Contact a Rolling Meadows Divorce Attorney
If you have questions about alimony awards and/or need assistance with your Illinois divorce, contact SAM LAW OFFICE LLC today to schedule an initial consultation.