When a married couple splits up, they will often need to make significant changes to the ways they handle financial issues. A couple that had combined their finances, deposited income into joint accounts, and worked together to pay bills and other expenses will need to separate their finances and determine how they will each be able to pay various costs on their own. While this process can be complicated and difficult, spouses will usually be able to make adjustments to ensure that they will each be able to live comfortably on a single income. However, there are some situations where one spouse may be unable to fully support themselves after their divorce, such as when a stay-at-home parent did not work outside the home during their marriage. In these situations, one spouse may believe that they should receive spousal support from the other. By understanding when a spouse may qualify for this form of support, a couple can ensure that this issue will be handled correctly during the divorce process.
Factors Considered in Decisions About Spousal Maintenance
Spousal support is known as spousal maintenance in Illinois, although it is often referred to as alimony. It is important to understand that even if the need for support seems obvious (such as when one party relies primarily or solely on the other party’s income to meet the family’s needs), maintenance will not be awarded automatically. A spouse who believes they need financial support will need to request it, and they must demonstrate that this support is necessary to meet their ongoing needs and maintain the lifestyle they were used to while they were married.
Illinois law details a number of factors that may play a role in determining whether a spouse is eligible to receive spousal maintenance, although a judge may consider any issues that may affect the parties’ ability to reach a fair and equitable outcome for their divorce. The specific factors that a judge should consider include:...