Helping You Understand Alimony And Child Support

When divorce occurs, two individuals who have made a life together become separated. They go from sharing income, debt and responsibilities to individual ones. The factors involved in the individual finances of each spouse will determine if support needs to be paid and how much support should be paid. Support takes two forms in divorce - spousal support and child support. At Cummings Law Firm, our family law attorney will discuss each and help you understand how the Connecticut court reaches a support decision. Call us today at 203-754-7779 to learn more. We serve in Waterbury, Danbury, Torrington, and throughout the region.

Spousal Support (Alimony)

In your divorce, you or your spouse may be asked to pay spousal support. Spousal support is not awarded in every situation, but if there is a large discrepancy in the financial situation of each spouse, spousal support may be awarded to the spouse with a lower income level or a lower level of education. There are many different types of spousal support, and a few that you should be familiar with if you are going through a divorce. Rest assured that our alimony lawyer can explain everything in detail to you when you call for a consultation.

Permanent alimony is one form of spousal support that is sometimes awarded in divorce. As the name suggests, permanent spousal support is not just a temporary agreement - it will last until one of two things happen:

  • The recipient of the support remarries.
  • The recipient or the payer of support passes away.

Permanent Alimony is generally awarded in situations where the marriage lasted for a long period of time and one spouse makes much more money than the other. Permanent alimony is rarely terminated unless one of the two above situations occurs, but it can be altered based on changes to income over time. For example, if the payer begins making more money, the recipient can petition to have the amount of support increased. Alternatively, if the payer is demoted or has some type of loss of income, he or she can ask that the payments be reduced.

A more common form of spousal support is temporary spousal support. This type of alimony is paid to help both spouses maintain their standards of living while the divorce is pending. Again, the spouse with better financial standing will be ordered to pay support to his or her spouse for a short period of time.

Periodic alimony is another of the major forms of spousal support paid in divorce. This is usually given to a stay-at-home spouse who does not have a lot of education or job experience. The periodic support helps this spouse improve his or her education level and job training so that eventually, this spouse can support him or herself. Periodic alimony can be used to pay for bills, job training or education while the recipient attempts to make a better living for him or herself. To learn more about spousal support, contact New Haven County's most trusted family lawyer, James Cummings.

Child Support

Another form of support that is common in divorce is child support. If you are a noncustodial parent, meaning that your child does not primarily live with you, you will most likely be asked to pay child support. This money is used to maintain your child's standard of living, even if you cannot physically be with him or her. Your ex will not be asked to pay child support if your child lives with him or her. Alternatively, you will be awarded child support if you are the custodial parent.

  • Child support almost always occurs in a fixed amount that you are to pay until your child turns 18 or he or she graduates from high school. Your income and general financial standing will be considered in order to calculate child support fairly. If you feel that factors were not taken into account when child support was calculated, and you cannot afford to pay the child support, you should contact a child support lawyer immediately. Defaulting on your child support payments is not a good option, so it is important to make sure that your child support payments are affordable.
  • If you do not pay child support, the consequences can be severe. You can face jail time for defaulting on your child support payments. Because of this, it is always in your best interest to make your child support payments on time.

If you are having difficulty with your child or spousal support payments, you should talk to a qualified child support lawyer immediately. Defaulting on these payments will not end well for you, so it is important to protect yourself by talking with a family law attorney as soon as possible. Call us at 203-754-7779.