PLM Family Law

  1. Home
  2.  → 
  3. Divorce
  4.  → How do the courts determine alimony in a divorce?

How do the courts determine alimony in a divorce?

One of the most significant issues that might arise when going through a divorce is the question of alimony. Also known as spousal support, alimony is a payment that one spouse makes to the other during or after a divorce.

The purpose of alimony is to limit any unfair economic effects of a divorce by providing ongoing income to a lower-wage-earning or non-wage-earning spouse. Here is how the court in North Dakota will determine if you get alimony in your divorce.

Examining the financial circumstances of both parties

In North Dakota, one of the primary factors the court will consider when determining alimony is the financial circumstances of both parties. The court will look at your income and assets, as well as those of your spouse. If there is a large difference between your income and that of your spouse, the court may award alimony to help bridge that gap.

Considering the length of the marriage

The longer the marriage, the more likely the court is to award alimony, particularly if one spouse has been out of the workforce for a significant period. This is to acknowledge the financial sacrifice made by a spouse who might have given up or postponed their career to support the family.

Assessing the ability of the paying spouse

The court will also make sure that the paying spouse can support themselves while paying alimony. If paying alimony would cause financial hardship to the paying spouse, the court may choose to reduce the amount or duration of the alimony payments.

Evaluating the need for further training or education

If you need more education or training to become self-sufficient, the court might award you temporary alimony. This alimony provides financial support while you gain the necessary skills or education to enter or re-enter the workforce.

Understanding the factors that go into determining spousal support can help you prepare for what to expect as you navigate the divorce process.