There are many issues to consider when a Houston couple chooses to get a divorce. One of the most common to arise is the possibility that one former spouse will be ordered to pay support to the other. The question is whether the recipient is entitled to it.
As soon as you recognize that your marriage is headed down the path of a divorce in Texas, it is imperative that you begin immediately to make strategic and wise financial decisions. Procrastinating the process of analyzing your finances and making needed changes can contribute to years of ongoing financial insecurity related to your divorce.
Like many other Texas residents, you may have had a long-term relationship with someone without having been formally married. Some states recognize common law marriage, which can give couples certain legal protections during their relationship and after they split up. In common law marriage states, property division and other matters are treated much the same way as divorce among legally married people.
Alimony laws in Texas and elsewhere can be complicated and emotional. Many people believe the concept of spousal support to be outdated and unfair to the paying party. On the other hand, those who did not work during the marriage or earn significantly less than their ex-spouse may need to receive spousal support until they become self-sufficient. You may wonder how long you are entitled to alimony, as well as whether you can receive it indefinitely.
There was a time when getting divorced almost automatically meant a husband would be paying alimony to a former wife. Today, however, spousal support may or may not be part of a Texas couple's divorce agreement. Changing social roles and even the new tax code are contributing to some new trends when it comes to agreements surrounding spousal support.
If you count yourself among the many people across Texas making their way through a divorce, you may be experiencing considerable change in your life. You may, too, need to take a new and different approach to filing your taxes this year in the wake of your divorce, because such a significant life change can have substantial tax implications. At Laura Dale & Associates, P.C. we recognize that divorce brings with it many changes, and we have helped many people facing similar circumstances navigate these changes and make informed decisions along the way.
As you and your husband go about seeking a Texas divorce, the issue of spousal maintenance may become a big one. While spousal support, which used to go by the name of alimony, traditionally has been paid by former husbands to former wives, this is no longer necessarily true.
Alimony, spousal support or spousal maintenance, as Texas courts call it: These terms all refer to the same legal concept. Either you or your former spouse would take on part of the financial responsibility for the other after your divorce.
Of all of the issues that divorced couples in Houston have to deal with, alimony may be the most contentious. Perhaps the reason for this is the perception that an obligation to pay alimony is often punitive. While the contribution that one may have had in ending their marriage may be something considered when rewarding alimony, its general purpose is simply to support a financially disadvantaged divorcee until they are able to secure gainful employment.
If you are filing for divorce in Texas, you may be eligible to receive alimony as part of your divorce settlement. Alimony is designed to help you get back on track if you were financially dependent on your spouse while you were married. Whether you stayed at home to take care of the children or you put your career on hold so your spouse could further their education or career, you may receive financial help from your spouse to help you get on your feet and maintain a consistent quality of life.