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What Do Judges Think About?

Alimony/Maintenance

In divorce cases, the judge may be asked to award one party alimony or spousal maintenance. The judge may order either spouse to make maintenance payments to the other spouse if it finds that the spouse seeking maintenance lacks sufficient income and property to provide for his or her reasonable needs as determined by examining the standard of living established during the marriage. The judge will consider the following factors when determining the amount of the maintenance:

  1. the financial resources of the party seeking maintenance, the property apportioned to the party, the party's ability to meet his or her needs independently, and the extent to which a provision for support of a child living with the party contains a sum for that party as custodian;
  2. the time and expense necessary to acquire sufficient education or training to enable the party seeking maintenance to find appropriate employment;
  3. the standard of living established during the civil marriage;
  4. the duration of the civil marriage
  5. the age and the physical and emotional condition of each spouse;
  6. the ability of the spouse from whom maintenance is sought to meet his or her reasonable needs while meeting those of the spouse seeking maintenance; and
  7. inflation with relation to the cost of living.
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