Spousal support, also referred to as alimony, is the financial payments one spouse makes to the other either during or after a divorce. The court can award a few different types of alimony depending on your situation. These are:
- periodic: paid until the death of the payor or the receiver passes or remarries;
- reimbursement: repayment to a spouse who helped with their partner’s educational expenses; and/or
- rehabilitative: paid until the spouse receiving payments is self-sufficient.
Either party can seek spousal support from a divorce court. Support of this kind is awarded when one spouse has a substantial financial need and the other spouse has the monetary ability to help. Alimony is not automatic; it is based on the following factors:
- marital length;
- the age, health, and physical capabilities of each spouse;
- how marital property has been divided;
- the education level of each spouse;
- the earning capacity of the spouse seeking support;
- the ability of the spouse seeking support to be self-sufficient;
- any tax consequences of alimony; and/or
- mutual agreements the spouses may have made in regards to alimony.
Cohabitation & Alimony
If parties engaged in a long-term romantic relationship share a residence, assets, and/or income, they are cohabitating. The beginning of a cohabitation relationship does not automatically end the receiving spouse’s alimony. Rather, the paying spouse who would like their alimony payments either reduced or canceled must file a motion with a court. Additionally, the paying spouse must prove cohabitation has occurred and the receiving spouse is financially benefitting from this arrangement.
Remarriage & Alimony
In Iowa, if the receiving spouse remarries, alimony will not automatically terminate. Some divorce decrees require alimony to continue even if the receiving spouse marries another person. However, if the decree makes no mention of remarriage, either spouse may file a motion in court.
If the receiving spouse would like to continue alimony after remarrying, they must prove a reasonable and justifiable need exists for doing so. If the court determines alimony should be terminated, the supported spouse may still be able to continue receiving payments, but only if their new marriage is annulled or made invalid.
Fighting for Your Financial Interests
The Law Offices of Mark R. Hinshaw is home to attorneys with extensive experience in spousal support cases. Whether you are the spouse seeking support or giving support, our lawyers offer sound legal guidance and strategy to protect your best interests.
For your case evaluation, contact our firm online or call us at (515) 200-7571 today.