If you’re going through the divorce process, you probably have plenty of issues on your mind, from child custody to property division to visitation rights. What about alimony? It can be difficult to predict if alimony, or spousal support, will become a factor in your divorce case. Keep reading to find out what awarding alimony looks like in the state of Oklahoma.
How is alimony paid?
If an Oklahoma court decides that you or your spouse needs financial support during your divorce proceedings, they may order temporary spousal support, also called spousal maintenance. This type of spousal support will only be paid until the court has made a final judgment on your divorce. The term “alimony” refers to spousal support paid after the final divorce decree has been issued. It may be paid in one lump sum or in installments over time, and it can come in the form of a money judgment, real estate, or personal property.
When filing their tax returns, paying spouses can deduct alimony payments from their taxable income. Supported spouses will count the payments as income and report them on their tax returns as well.
How is alimony awarded and calculated?
While courts in many other states have a set of guidelines to help calculate alimony, Oklahoma does not. Instead, the courts will evaluate each spouse’s general circumstances, as well as the length of the marriage and each spouse’s ability to support themselves. Because Oklahoma is a no-fault divorce state, the court will not treat fault as a factor when calculating alimony.
Oklahoma courts will award the type, amount, and duration of alimony payments on a case-by-case basis. If one spouse has the financial need and a lower earning capacity, and the other spouse has the ability to pay, the courts will be more likely to award alimony.
How long does alimony last?
Again, the courts will consider the particular case to decide on a reasonable alimony duration. It can be short-term or long-term. If the supported spouse will likely take longer to find a job, earn an income, or otherwise become self-supporting, the payments should also last longer. Permanent or long-term alimony payments are more likely to occur after lengthy marriages.
Alimony payments will end when the supported spouse dies or remarries. In the case of a remarried spouse, they can file a motion within 90 days of remarriage to continue payments. The motion may be granted if the supported spouse can prove that the support is still necessary under the circumstances.
If you have any concerns about alimony in your divorce case, make sure you consult with a qualified attorney. Contact Bedlam Law to speak with a compassionate, dedicated lawyer who understands the challenges you will face as you move through your divorce proceedings. We will provide you with the knowledgeable and efficient legal counsel you need to secure a better future.