What is the difference between alimony and spousal support?

After getting a divorce, a couple has to deal with a lot of new issues that come up in their life. The most common issues include child support, custody, property division, and many more. But among them, the most common concern is to deal with financial support.

When a couple separates, they also need to separate financially. In some cases, they need to go through some financial hardship. Even for some people, finding a job after the divorce is not as easy as it sounds. That is why spousal support and alimony are concerned about financial issues.

In this writing, we are going to explore some basic differences between alimony and spousal support. So keep reading the entire article to learn more.

Definition of spousal support

Generally, spousal support refers to the payment where the high-earning spouse has to pay to the low-earning spouse after their separation. In some cases, it gives financial relief and support to the low-earning spouse. Sometimes, when a spouse did not work during the marriage, it is really hard to deal with the financial hardship after the divorce.

That is why, after the separation, the high-earning spouse is required to pay the lower-earning spouse. There is some qualification for spousal support. One needs to meet the requirements before claiming for spousal support. And different states and provinces have different kinds of requirements in this regard. Nonetheless, there are mainly three types of spousal support. They are in the following;

  • Temporary spousal support
  • Permanent spousal support
  • Rehabilitative alimony

Differences between alimony and spousal support

Generally speaking, there is no big difference between this two-term alimony and spousal support. In reality, they are the same thing. Alimony is usually an older term for spousal support where the ex-husband is responsible for maintaining the financial hardship after the divorce. Mainly it refers to when a man supports her spouse financially.

On the other hand, spousal support is a more modern term with the same meaning and purpose. Regardless the gender, it is a neutral term. Both can be responsible for maintaining spousal support. It usually refers to when the husband or wife pays a certain amount of financial support to the other spouse for a certain period of time.

In some states, when a spouse is done something wrong with the other spouse, the court may order them for the alimony for what they did with their innocent spouse. After the separation, the victim’s spouse can claim to the court if they want. But in such cases, they need to prove them innocent in court. Also, you can synonymize alimony as a penalty for the wrongdoers.

In most cases, people usually like to use the term spousal support over alimony. And spousal support is widely known worldwide. Also, according to the law, it is a more appropriate term while describing the financial support than the alimony. But including the court, and so many people still like to use the term alimony over spousal support.

Seek spousal support

As we have known that, in order to get spousal support, you need to go through some legal processes and meet some requirements. And a person only can seek spousal support after legal separation, divorce, domestic violence, and so on.

In addition, sometimes, spousal support is also available more the domestic partners, former spouse, same-sex spouse, and so on. When you claim spousal support, the court will review your case then they may grant it for temporary or long-term spousal support. Also, the amount of spousal support will depend on certain factors.

Amount of spousal support

Almost every state uses its own formulae in order to calculate the spousal support amount. Your country’s local court has a certain rule to determine temporary spousal support. When the court needs to calculate the spousal support, they basically rely on certain aspects or factors in this regard.

Some of these factors may include the following:

  • the duration of the marriage or the partnership
  • earning capacity of the spouse
  • the age, health condition of the partners
  • standard of living of both partners
  • their daily and basic needs
  • source of earning or income
  • marital or shared property or debts
  • any additional costs like hospital costs or education costs

Family lawyer for spousal support

When a spouse needs to deal with financial hardship after the separation, perhaps this is the hardest time for an individual. That is why claiming spousal support is very important. But one needs to follow certain legal procedures and court rules in order to get spousal support. In some cases, one can find it so complex in their hard time.

This is why seeking help from a family lawyer is always a better option. A family lawyer can guide you to get the spousal support payment as early as possible. Also, you can know your legal rights from a lawyer.

Financial stability after separation will play a huge role in your financial life. That is why you should contact an experienced professional family lawyer as soon as you can after your divorce.

The bottom line

Understanding spousal support or alimony is very important for an individual. After a divorce, when people have no knowledge about spousal support or alimony, they need to face and deal with new issues and financial hardship. That is why you can follow the above-mentioned description in order to get a basic idea about spousal support or alimony.

If all these things may seem difficult for you, then you can always seek help from a professional family lawyer. Also, you can follow the guidelines about spousal support online (i.e., spousal support advisory guidelines). Hopefully, this writing helped you to understand what is the basic difference between alimony and spousal support.