Am I Entitled To Spousal Support In Loudoun County Divorce Proceedings?
Divorce represents one of the biggest stressors you can face in life. In addition to the emotional turmoil it causes and the impacts on family and friends, there are important financial issues to consider.
If your spouse was the primary breadwinner in your marriage or you relied on their income to supplement your own, you may have serious concerns regarding how you will support yourself and maintain your standard of living once your divorce is final. These concerns can be addressed in your divorce proceedings. Depending on the situation, you may be entitled to spousal support payments.
Your Rights To Spousal Support
Spousal support in Virginia, referred to as alimony in other states, is designed to help ensure vulnerable parties in a divorce are able to provide for themselves and their needs in the aftermath. As part of your divorce proceedings, spousal support may be awarded to either the husband or wife depending on the particular situation. Under the Virginia Code, factors that will influence your rights to spousal support include:
- The length of time you were married;
- The age and health of each spouse;
- Each spouse’s current income and earning ability;
- The amount of premarital property each possesses;
- The lifestyle you enjoyed during the marriage;
- Whether you sacrificed your own career or education for the sake of the marriage or to provide for children.
In some cases, marital misconduct can affect the outcome of spousal support hearings. If your spouse spent marital funds on affairs or wasted assets on addictions, it could make spousal support more likely. However, if you engaged in adultery or other types of behaviors, it could jeopardize your rights to receive spousal support payments.
What You Need To Know About Spousal Support
Being awarded spousal support through the Loudoun County Family Court as part of your divorce can help you get the fresh start you need. It allows you to gain the skills and experience you need to re-enter the workforce or increase your income while preventing drastic changes in housing or providing for other needs.
However, whereas spousal support payments in the past could go on indefinitely, today they are likely to be awarded for a far briefer period. Similarly, the amount you may be entitled to is likely to be less as well. Under general guidelines, the court may award up to 26 percent of your spouse’s income to be paid as spousal support, minus 58 percent of what you currently make.
Recent changes in the tax code could also impact your ability to obtain spousal support payments. Previously, the paying spouse enjoyed tax benefits as a result of being able to deduct spousal from their tax return. This offered some incentive for making these payments. Under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), this is no longer allowed.
Let Us Help You Today
To discuss spousal support payments and other important divorce-related issues, reach out to the law office of Schwartz Kalina, PLLC. Call or contact our Leesburg divorce lawyers online and request a consultation today.