Ekker Law, P.C. / Steven B. Ekker, Esq.

Will I Have to Pay Spousal Support if My Spouse Does Not Work?

 Posted on February 20, 2023 in Divorce

kane county divorce lawyerDivorcing spouses often have many questions and concerns about spousal support. Individuals who have been out of the workforce due to household responsibilities, child-related responsibilities, disability, or other reasons may worry about how to make ends meet after the divorce. They want to make sure they have the financial support they need. Breadwinners worry about how much spousal maintenance they will have to pay and how long it will last.

If you are getting divorced, make sure you understand Illinois laws regarding spousal support. For personalized guidance tailored to your specific situation, seek out the advice of a qualified family law attorney.

Spousal Maintenance Basics in Illinois

In Illinois, spousal support—also called alimony and maintenance—is an order from the court for one party in a divorce to pay the other for his or her financial support. Some spouses negotiate a spousal maintenance arrangement during the divorce process. If the spouses are able to cooperate and negotiate in good faith, they may be able to avoid the expense and hassle of a court battle.

If the spouses cannot reach an agreement through negotiation, the spouse requesting alimony can petition the court for a spousal maintenance order. The court considers several factors when deciding whether to award maintenance, including:

  • How long the marriage lasted

  • Each spouse's income

  • Each spouse's financial resources

  • The age and physical condition of each spouse

  • The standard of living during the marriage

  • The amount of property each spouse received in the divorce

Maintenance is usually ordered for a finite amount of time. Typically, the duration of maintenance payments is based on the length of the marriage. A spouse's maintenance obligation ends if the other spouse gets remarried or passes away.

The amount of spousal maintenance that a spouse may be required to pay is most often based on a statutory formula that uses both spouses' net incomes to calculate a reasonable maintenance award.

If you suspect that your spouse will request maintenance during your divorce, start working with a divorce lawyer as soon as possible. Your lawyer can help you protect your rights and negotiate a fair settlement on your behalf.




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