Bronx Durational Alimony Lawyer

Durational alimony is simply alimony that is awarded for a set duration rather than permanently. Alimony is referred to in the New York statutes as spousal maintenance. Durational alimony is the norm; there is an expectation that alimony will end, because its primary purpose is to enable the recipient spouse some support until they are able to become self-sufficient. Despite statutory guidelines, the judge has discretion in how long they award alimony, so it is important that you consult with a good Bronx durational alimony lawyer whether you are the party who will be paying or receiving alimony.

Alimony is awarded only about 10% of the time in divorce cases, must less than in the past. Bronx courts award durational alimony to both men and women. Most of the time it is women, however, both because they are more likely to be the spouse who stays home to take care of the household and because of the hesitance of some qualified men to have their attorneys request alimony.

How a Court Determines the Duration of Alimony

It’s not uncommon for spouses to play different roles in a marriage. One spouse may concentrate on their career and earning income while the other may concentrate primarily on taking care of the home and children and supporting the primary earner’s career. Durational alimony is meant to help the spouse who was not the primary earner become self-sufficient. They may need to pursue an educational degree or other kind of training in order to do so. Your Bronx lawyer should present all a judge needs to know in order to make a fair award of durational alimony.

The reality is that judges in the Bronx have quite a bit of leeway in determining the duration of alimony, but they can start out with a statutory advisory schedule and then consider a number of factors laid out in the statutes. The advisory schedule is not compulsory. It simply looks at the number of years the couple were married and then suggests a percentage of that as the duration.

  • How long the parties were married
  • 0 - 15 years
  • 15 - 20 years
  • Over 20 years
  • Length of time suggested for alimony
  • 15% - 30%
  • 30% - 40%
  • 35% - 50%

If the court uses the advisory schedule at all, it is only a starting point. The court will consider many other widely-ranging factors including age and health, earning capacity, the payer spouse interfering with the other’s earning capacity, tax impact, standard of living established during the marriage, contributions of the recipient spouse to the career of the other spouse, anticipated retirement assets, income-producing marital properties awarded to the recipient spouse and a number of other factors including whatever the court decides is “just and proper.” It is up to your Bronx durational alimony lawyer to be sure all factors in your favor are presented to the court.

When a Court May Not Award Durational Alimony

Although it’s uncommon, a Bronx court may still award nondurational or permanent alimony. This is generally where the marriage was a long one, and the recipient spouse is older, ill or unlikely to ever be able to earn a living.

Other Factors that Can End Durational Alimony

Though durational alimony has a set time that is meant to end once the recipient spouse can become self-sufficient, it is possible for durational alimony to end before that. Alimony also ends

  • If one of the spouses dies
  • The recipient spouse remarries or
  • The recipient spouse begins to live with a partner they represent as being a spouse
Postnuptial Agreements, Prenuptial Agreements and Durational Alimony

Those who have executed postnuptial or prenuptial agreements can include terms concerning the duration of alimony. If the Bronx divorce judge does not determine the terms are inherently unfair, and if neither attorney challenges the agreement for legal grounds such as fraud, the court will adhere to its terms.

Bronx Durational Alimony Lawyer

Judges have a lot of discretion in awarding durational alimony. It’s common for one spouse to be the primary breadwinner while the other contributes in other ways such as raising children, maintaining the household and entertaining the breadwinner’s business associates. Your Bronx attorney must present contributions of each spouse carefully to the judge in order for the judge to be able to make a fair decision regarding durational alimony. The attorneys at Stephen Bilkis and Associates have years of experience successfully representing clients in the New York Supreme Court and Family Court who are seeking spousal support or maintenance. Contact us at 1-800-NY-NY-LAW (1-800-696-9529) to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your concerns related to your family law case. Contact us at 1-800-NY-NY-LAW (1-800-696-9529) to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We represent clients in the following locations: the Bronx, Brooklyn, Long Island, Manhattan, Nassau County, Queens, Staten Island, Suffolk County and Westchester County.

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