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How Does Alimony Work in an Ohio Divorce?

It’s a common scenario: after spending years raising children in a marriage, the wife and mother is thinking about filing the petition for divorce but is worried about receiving enough alimony to survive. Conversely, the husband and father is worried about being taken to the cleaners, so to speak. Any way you slice it, alimony, officially referred to as spousal support in Ohio, is a common source of contention during divorce proceedings. This blog will tackle some of the common questions spouses have about spousal support. 

There is No Spousal Support Calculator

While there is a formula for calculating child support payments in Ohio, there is no such calculator for spousal support. If you and your spouse cannot come to an agreement about spousal support, the court will be forced to decide for you. When courts are considering how much spousal support to order in a divorce case, there are 14 factors they take into account. 

These 14 factors take many things into consideration. Some of the issues covered include the earning capacity, education level, and debts of each spouse. The 14th and final factor is a catch-all, “any other factor that the court expressly finds to be relevant and equitable.” So, the courts generally have a lot of flexibility to award spousal support. 

Permanent vs. Temporary Spousal Support

There are two types of spousal support that may be awarded in an Ohio divorce: temporary and permanent. Spousal support payments that are paid during the divorce process to assist one spouse are referred to as “temporary.” Temporary spousal support continues until the divorce is finalized or permanent spousal support is ordered. 

In this context, “permanent” spousal support does not refer to support that only ends with the death of either spouse. Permanent spousal support is meant to give one spouse the financial means to cover necessities and get him or her in a position to begin working (or resume working). Permanent spousal support can end when the receiving spouse remarries or moves into the household of a romantic partner. Other times, it can end on a specified date. 

Spousal Support is Not Automatic in Ohio

If you wish to receive spousal support from your spouse in an Ohio divorce, you must demonstrate a need to receive it. Additionally, your spouse must have the ability to pay. It can be in your best interests to work with your spouse to come up with a spousal support arrangement. If you are unable to do this, though, a court will decide whether or not you should be awarded spousal support. 

A qualified attorney is essential in a contested or uncontested divorce to ensure your rights are protected and you achieve your goals. Our firm will give your case personalized attention and be there for you every step of the way. Call us today at 330-664-9919 to see how we can help. 

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