Areas of Practice

MATRIMONIAL/DIVORCE LAW

Maintenance/Spousal Support

Determining maintenance or spousal support (formerly referred to as alimony) can be a complicated process. Whether you are seeking to collect maintenance or may be required to pay it, you need a skilled matrimonial/family law attorney to protect your interests and financial future. At our New York family law firm, our experienced attorneys can explain the laws surrounding spousal support, inform a person of his/her legal options, challenge spousal support terms in court, and protect the person's individual rights in and around Long Island and the New York metropolitan area.

Maintenance is a long or short term payment of money from the monied spouse to the non-monied spouse resulting from a divorce or legal separation. Family Court can also award maintenance between spouses where there is no divorce or separation action, but where adequate support nonetheless becomes an issue. Maintenance is designed to cover the needs of the dependent spouse, including shelter, food, clothing, and medical expenses. When two people get married, they establish a standard of living. Upon a divorce, the law of New York endeavors to help the dependent spouse maintain that standard of living through the receipt of maintenance or spousal support. This type of support is designed to provide sufficient income for the dependent spouse to maintain the marital standard of living, at least until the dependent spouse is able to become self supporting.

In all maintenance cases the judge is required to consider the non-dependent spouse's ability to pay, the financial circumstances of both parties, the time and effort that it will take for the non-monied spouse to become self-supporting, and a variety of other factors. Maintenance is generally designed to afford the dependent spouse adequate time to become self supporting, whether by furthering their education, obtaining job skills or otherwise. In some cases, "lifetime" maintenance may be awarded where it is apparent that the dependent spouse does not have the ability to ever become self supporting.