As more and more Courts become more and more stingy about awarding alimony-and some states are working towards limiting or eliminating alimony altogether-people often ask me how alimony is going to be calculated in their case.
You can certainly read my other blogs regarding alimony, but this one is dedicated to the “short” marriage. Let’s start by defining what truly is a short marriage.
Marriages under five years after most commonly referred to as “short.” Let’s define five years. Is it a total relationship of knowing each other five years? Is it just the date of marriage to the date you separate? Is it the date of marriage to the date of divorce?
Good questions! Judges handle it differently, so rule one is that you ALWAYS need to understand who your judge is going to be. Or Family Law Magistrate.
Great information starts with a consult with a highly experienced family law attorney. The more experienced your attorney is, especially with the tendencies of the judges and magistrates of your county, the more likely your attorney can provide you with great advice to know whether to settle, go to court or go to mediation.
Strategy is incredibly important. Men tend to not like paying alimony. However, alimony can be a powerful tool for the payor, because (a) it is tax deductible, and (b) it is taxable to the person who receives it.
Defeating an alimony claim with a short marriage is highly judge dependent, but additional factors, like extremely high income or an incredibly long pre-marital relationship will need to be part of the conversation.
Step one-get to a highly experienced divorce attorney first, and then take it from there!