Not every divorce that passes through the Illinois courts will include an agreement or order for alimony. Alimony, also called spousal support, is money paid from one party to a divorce to the other to help the recipient party meet their financial needs. Since some divorcing couples include two parties who are financially independent and capable of managing their own post-divorce financial lives, not all divorces will require alimony for the security of financially dependent individuals.
How courts look at requests for alimony
If a party to a divorce believes that they will need alimony after their divorce, they and their attorney can request it. In some instances, the party and their soon-to-be ex may establish an alimony agreement, wherein the parties agree to terms regarding the support of the dependent party. If the parties do not agree then the divorce court will hear evidence on whether an alimony order is needed.
Some of the factors that courts will evaluate as they consider requests for alimony include:
- The parties’ incomes and needs
- The prospective incomes of the parties
- The length of the parties’ marriage
- The health and ages of the parties
- The standard of living the parties experienced while married
- Any other relevant factors
Based on their findings, courts can order or deny requests for alimony in divorce cases.
Advocate for financial needs during a divorce
Ending a marriage can be a hard process. It can be made even harder if one of the parties does not have the financial power to stay afloat on their own once they are single and free of their spouse. Individuals going through the divorce process should talk to their divorce and family law attorneys about their needs and expectations for requesting alimony. This post does not provide legal advice. Readers can direct their questions to their own legal advisers.