Alimony: Rehabilitative Spousal Support
Alimony awards, also called “spousal support,” are usually granted at the court’s discretion upon a determination, which takes into account certain factors, that spousal maintenance is necessary. Some of the factors considered when determining alimony payments include the education of the spouses, their respective work experiences, income histories, ages, health, the length of the marriage, and the time either spouse has spent out of the work force. Alimony may be either temporary (often called “rehabilitative alimony”) or permanent. The court grants rehabilitative spousal support when one spouse has been disadvantaged in order to equalize the burden of the divorce.
One important factor in property division in divorce is the date of valuation of the spouses’ assets and liabilities for purposes of dividing marital property. The courts must consider the date of valuation in order to establish a consistent basis for determining a fair distribution of marital property. Fixing values for different assets and liabilities at different times can affect the true value of assets and liabilities that a spouse receives.
In the United States, all but one state require that a person must attain the age of 18 years in order to marry without parental permission. Nebraska sets that age at 19. Some states allow marriage below the minimum age, with court approval, in cases of pregnancy or the birth of an illegitimate child. Although a marriage of underage parties might be void, it can be validated by parental consent in some states.
Property division in divorce generally affects only marital property, but some states allow equitable distribution of separate property. Marital property is presumed to be property that is acquired by both or either of the spouses during their marriage. Divorce courts divide marital property according to the classification schemes in controlling statutes or caselaw.
The divorce process can be a very emotional and trying time in one’s life. Often the process involves confrontations and complicated legal disputes. In recent years, divorce mediation has become more popular because it can be more effective, less costly, and yet a successful method for settling divorce disputes. Mediation is an alternative method of resolving matrimonial issues that are involved in divorce. It is a process in which couples can amicably work out marital, financial, and property-related disputes with the help of a neutral third party known as a mediator.