How Spousal Support Works in Ohio

The divorce process is complicated, but it can get more unbearable if finances are involved. Alimony or spousal support is a court-ordered payment that one spouse pays to the other during or after divorce. The payment amount is intended to ensure that each spouse can maintain the lifestyle they enjoyed before the break-up.

Spouses should create an agreement regarding the details of the spousal support. However, when you and your ex disagree about spousal support, the court will decide who will pay for the alimony. The order will also specify the amount and the duration of the spousal support.

How is Spousal Support Calculated?

Ohio laws allow courts to consider certain factors and use their discretion to determine spousal support. This means that the calculation of alimony varies from county to county. A Youngstown family law attorney will help you understand how courts calculate spousal support in the area.

Factors to be considered when calculating alimony include:

  • Each spouse's source of income, including the income from property, divided after the divorce
  • Each spouse's retirement benefits
  • The spouses' age and mental, physical, and emotional health
  • Each spouse's earning ability
  • The duration of the marriage
  • Standard of living
  • Relative liabilities and assets
  • Each spouse's education
  • The duration the spouse receiving the alimony will take before they complete training, receive education or get the job experience needed to seek employment.

How Long Does Spousal Support Last

Once upon a time, spousal support could last until death. However, the court has the discretion to choose a shorter alimony duration. One of the most critical factors judges consider when determining the course of spousal support is the length of the marriage.

Ohio courts will not award alimony unless the spouses are married for at least five years. Besides, the court may not grant a lifetime spousal support if the marriage lasted less than 20 years. Although lifetime spousal support is expected in lengthy marriages, the spousal support's duration is determined by each case's circumstances.

If permanent support is not awarded in a lengthy marriage, the general rule of thumb allows the spousal support duration to be one-third of the marriage. For instance, if you have been married for 24 years, the spousal support can be paid for eight years.

Short-term and permanent spousal support is terminated if one party dies. Generally, permanent support ends once the spouse receiving the support cohabitates with another partner or remarries.

Contact a Youngstown Family Law Attorney

There are many legal and financial factors to consider when negotiating spousal support. Working with a Youngstown family law attorney can help maximize or reduce spousal support.

Contact the team at Hunt Law to schedule a case evaluation and allow us to represent your best interests. We are ready to respond to any query you may have about spousal support or family law.