Kathy D. Sheive Attorney at Law

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There are many factors to consider when negotiating alimony

There are often two issues that divorcing couples often wait up until the eleventh hour to settle before finalizing the end of their marriage. Child custody and alimony seem to be what couples most often have difficulty reaching an agreement about.

One of the reasons that alimony is so difficult for couples to reach an agreement on is because it ultimately involves one spouse giving up a portion of what they make to support their ex.

If their husband or wife has been dependent on their ex for an extended period of time, then they might not be aware of what their expected expenses may be once they take to living on their own. They may overestimate them, leading them to demand far more than their spouse is willing to allocate for them.

Another common reason why alimony negotiations drag out is there aren't any uniform standards that different states' judges must follow in awarding alimony. Instead, it's discretionary. Some states allow lifetime alimony, although rare, while others only allow for it to be awarded for half of the length of a marriage.

Spousal support negotiations often stall because a prospective recipient spouse feels forced into waiving alimony altogether. While a husband or wife may initially think that they can make it on their own without support from their ex, lawyers often advise their clients to not completely waive their right to alimony.

The reason that they do this is because once it's waived, there's no chance of negotiating to receive it ever again. Many divorce attorneys instead encourage their clients to think of worst case scenarios and of alimony as a type of contingency plan. If things don't go as intended, then securing some degree of alimony in the divorce settlement can mean a lot in the long run.

There are a number of economic factors that a judge takes into account when making an award of spousal support. They include each spouses' contribution to the marriage, health, education levels, job prospects and age. Each may affect a decision a mediator makes, or a ruling ordered by a judge. Having a proactive Kissimmee alimony attorney on your side can ensure that your legal rights are protected when these are considered.

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