Spousal Support Payments in Massachusetts

Spousal support, more colloquially known as alimony, is one of the most common types of legal obligations that individuals are faced with when pursuing divorce. If you’re getting divorced in Massachusetts, attorney Michael F. Mimno will work as your alimony advocate.

What are spousal support/alimony payments?

Spousal support payments are payments that are typically paid by the financially independent spouse to the financially dependent spouse in the event of a divorce. The payments are court ordered, and a court sets both the payment amount and payment terms. Alimony payments cannot typically be adjusted once they are set unless circumstances change dramatically.

Types of Alimony

Spousal Support PaymentsThere are four primary types of alimony that a court may order to be paid in Massachusetts. The first, and perhaps most familiar, is general term alimony. General term alimony can be limited in duration or permanent, and is paid to the spouse who is financially dependent. Reimbursement alimony, on the other hand, is a periodic or one-time payment that is paid for the compensation of contributions – both economic and non-economic – to one spouse by the other.

The third type of alimony is rehabilitative alimony.  This type of alimony is paid to the spouse that is currently financially dependent, but plans to be financially independent within a five year time period (which is when the payments will be terminated, if not sooner). Finally, transitional alimony cannot last more than three years, and is intended for those who are adjusting from the termination of a marriage that was short-term.

How are spousal support payments determined?

According to Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 208, Section 53, a court determines spousal support payments by the consideration of the following factors:

  • Length of the marriage
  • Age of the parties involved
  • Health of the parties
  • Income
  • Employment and employability
  • Economic and non-economic contributions of both parties during the marriage
  • Marital lifestyle
  • Ability to maintain marital lifestyle following divorce
  • Lost economic opportunities as a result of the marriage

In addition to the list above, the court reserves the right to weigh other factors that it considers relevant.

How a Divorce Attorney Can Help

If you are getting divorced in the state of Massachusetts, a divorce and family law attorney can help to ensure that the amount of alimony payments that you are required to pay or that you are entitled to receive are fair and just. At the law offices of attorney Michael F. Mimno, our legal team will fight for your rights during this emotional and legally complex time. To receive a free consultation today, call us now at 978-470-4567.